Scott L. Marshall says he is a concerned Layton resident who isn't opposed to secondary water per se but is against "inequities" in the current proposal to create a special service district for pressurized irrigation.

"It's not that I'm against secondary water," Marshall said. "It's the hidden costs . . . There are just some negatives."Marshall, an elementary school teacher, has spent considerable time researching the costs of the secondary water system the City Council has proposed for the majority of Layton residents who live west of Fairfield Road.

If his own door-to-door contacts in his neighborhood are an accurate indication, most citizens aren't for the proposal, either, he said. Marshall said he contacted 50 residents Feb. 4 and found only three of them to be in favor of the district, and two of those had some strong reservations about it.

Marshall said several of the City Council members he's contacted also report that 80 percent or more of the citizens they've talked to oppose the district.

The council held a public hearing on Feb. 2 that was attended by more than 250 residents - most of whom also seemed to be opposed to the current secondary water plan.

Residents had until last week to submit written protests to the city offices. Not voting will be counted as an affirmative vote. It will legally take 51 percent of the affected voters or land owners to stop the district, but the City Council could vote next month to abandon the plan - if members believe most residents are against it - even if less than 51 percent end up responding in writing.

Marshall drafted some petitions he and neighbors planned to circulate before the deadline. They've been approved by the city attorney and will be accepted as no votes.

City leaders have proposed a secondary water district as the best overall option for providing the city with the water it will need through buildout - the maximum number of houses or population in a city - by taking peak demand off its culinary water system. In Layton's case, buildout is 112,000 people.

Marshall believes the City Council is taking the easy road with the special district and he wants the council to reconsider the plan. He's especially concerned about mandatory hookup to the system and the tax lien that could be waived against a person's property, if an owner fails to pay the required fees.

"It runs contrary to my way of thinking," Marshall said of mandatory hookup that he believes will especially hurt fixed-income residents.

He also believes secondary water will ultimately encourage wasteful water practices. Marshall says the city shouldn't be in such a hurry to plan for future water - if the needs of the present are ignored in the process.