Voters in Santa Clara County overwhelmingly approved Measure S, making it clear that safe, clean water, natural flood protection and caring for the environment are priorities now and for future generations. The measure needed 66% to pass and has garnered more than 75% of votes in an election that saw a record-setting number of ballots cast.
“I am grateful for the trust voters have shown in Valley Water,” Valley Water Board Chair Nai Hsueh said. “This program was built by the people, for the people. Tens of thousands of residents, community partners and stakeholders told Valley Water what they wanted to see in Measure S. Those priorities will guide us for years to come.”
Thanks to the voters’ support, the program will continue to provide $45 million annually for local projects, which includes the Coyote Creek Flood Protection Project, the Anderson Dam Seismic Retrofit Project and pipeline upgrades.
The voters also made it clear they want Valley Water to move quickly on the encampment issue. Measure S provides $38.7 million over the next 15 years to work with local cities and agencies to clean up the large creekside encampments that contaminate waterways and damage Valley Water facilities. We will also partner with local municipalities, social services, and nonprofit advocacy groups that will help provide housing alternatives to the unhoused population.
“With their votes the community has spoken, and we heard it loud and clear,” Valley Water CEO Rick Callender said. “Measure S will provide much needed local funding to better meet the needs of all communities we serve, including our most vulnerable neighbors. We are proud to provide support to disadvantaged and underserved communities. The voters have given us the green light, and we are ready to go.”
Measure S is a renewal of Valley Water’s Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program that voters also overwhelmingly passed in 2012.
More information on the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program, the priorities and the complete Community Preferred Program Report, can be found at safecleanwater.org.