About Fullerton’s Illegal Water Tax
According to city records and the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, the City of Fullerton has been illegally charging a hidden 10% “in-lieu franchise fee” (a tax) on every water bill since the 1997.
The tax was pushed to 10% about 40 years ago, but in 1997 the passage of California Proposition 218 made the tax illegal. Fullerton’s city leaders continued to collect the tax and did not properly publish it on water bills or account for its use.
To make matters worse, the tax was not even used to pay for water expenses. Rather, it was redirected to pay for the salaries and pensions of the councilmembers and city administrators who approved the tax.
Over the last 15 years, the City of Fullerton has illegally collected at least $27,000,000 from water users.
The city was notified of the illegal tax in June of 2011, but it has since failed to take action to stop collecting the tax. As of April 2012, the city is still collecting over $200,000 per month illegally.
Councilmembers Pat McKinley, Don Bankhead and Dick Jones have failed to stop the tax and continue to defend it.