We can understand why residents served by the North Valley Wastewater Treatment Plant would support charging a standby fee for vacant lots.
The sewer plant has had a checkered history, having prompted controversy when the county wasn't quick enough to expand it. Standby fees were implemented in 1997, but repealed in 2004 after accusations the county wasn't friendly to business.
Looking at the number of buildable lots in the North Valley, which was one of the fastest growing portions of the county, the county invested heavily in the plant in an effort to get ahead of the growth.
Less than …