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From the Balcony: This doesn't hold water

July 06, 2010|By Gary Huerta

I've been doing a lot of head scratching lately, trying to make heads or tails of some of things I find to be massive lapses of judgment around town.

First, what the heck is going on with Glendale Water & Power? They tell us over and over and over how we all must conserve water. They sweeten the notion by telling us that mandatory conservation will save us money. Then they come out and say they are losing money and have to raise rates.

What? You can't tell us we can save money by conserving water and then raise our water prices. At least not with a straight face, right? If you ask me, it feels like an enormous pile of … false advertising.


Attention, Glendale Water & Power: Stop talking about how customers can save money while you contemplate a rate increase. It's completely two-faced. It's naive at best and blatantly deceptive at worst!

And don't think I'm complaining on my behalf. I have a pool, so my summer water bill is crazy anyway. But why should anyone have to endure a backward economic model that relies on raising prices when demand goes down? That makes no sense whatsoever.

Think about it. What would happen if Damon's restaurant reduced the size of its Mai Tai, charged two bucks more and said, "It's not less cocktail, it's more sobriety!" They'd go out of business.

But I digress.

On the upside, the lack of common sense on the part of Glendale Water & Power got me to thinking about this attempt to find a brand statement for the city of Glendale.

I figured I'd lend a hand to the branding effort. Not for free, of course. If the city likes my proposed brand position, they can pay me for it. I know the value of intellectual property, and I'm not giving this away.

Glendale has a real untapped opportunity to brand itself as something unique. But in order to brand itself differently, it must first do things differently. If we put a premium on intelligence instead of condoning the inane, we can brand ourselves as:

Glendale — The smarter city.

Of course, for the brand to have validity, we must live up to it. How? Let's start with the City Council rejecting any GWP rate increase solely on the stupidity of the request itself. Let's declare that, "In Glendale, no utility company can promote conservation as a money-saving opportunity while simultaneously raising prices." Why? We're Glendale — The smarter city.

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