SAN JOSE, Calif. (KRON) — Santa Clara County water district is spending $3.2 million dollars on a ballot measure that’s part of the June primary election.

However this measure is now stirring controversy as critics call it deceiving and misleading.

The Santa Clara Valley water district recently approved a June ballot measure that, based on the language, would “limit” the number of terms that board members can serve. In contrast, the measure would actually do the opposite.

“Our water district decided to spend $3.2 million dollars in rate payers funds to put a measure on the ballot to extend their terms in office and they worded the ballot measure to say that it would limit them to four consecutive four-year terms,”said city council member Matt Mahan.

“Problem is they’re currently limited to three consecutive four-year terms so it’s frankly a huge waste of rate payers funds that could’ve gone to water conservation efforts.”

Mahan serves district 10 on the San Jose City Council. He put together a memo that would create a resolution to oppose the term limit extension.

He also created this online tool to raise awareness and ask voters what they’d rather see $3.2 million spent on.

“It’s time to get fresh ideas especially on something like draught,” San Jose resident Martin Rauchwerk said. “We haven’t been doing the right things in the past to be able to deal with it mainly because it’s unprecedented. It’s very misleading, the wording on the ballot.”

In a statement to KRON4 News, Valley Water CEO Rick Callender said quote:

“During the February 22 board meeting, they expressed their belief that allowing for voters to extend term limits for directors would allow complex projects like the Anderson Dam Retrofit Project to continue construction and be seen through by consistent leadership, potentially saving hundreds of millions of dollars by avoiding costly mid-course changes or delays in large infrastructure projects.”

The ballot measure was approved in a 4-3 vote by the board with three of the four men in favor having terms that expire in December of this year.

“Really a self serving ballot measure and if the directors really thought that it was so important that they extend to a fourth term they should’ve at least worded the ballot measure truthfully so the public can make a decision about it,” Mahan said.

The rules and open government committee moved Mahan’s memo forward on Wednesday and it will now be heard by the full council on Tuesday.