Posted by: thepinetree on 05/29/2014 12:52 PM
Updated by: thepinetree on 05/29/2014 01:09 PM
Expires: 01/01/2019 12:00 AM
Directors Ask Supervisors To Reconsider Wild and Scenic Support
San Andreas, CA...During a May 28 board meeting, the Calaveras County Water District Board of Directors decided to request that the Calaveras County Board of Supervisors reverse its position on state Wild and Scenic designation for a portion of the Mokelumne River. Directors said legislation moving through the state Senate should be halted to allow for a “collaborative process” to take place among stakeholders....
Senate Bill 1199, authored by Sen. Lori Hancock, would protect 37 miles of the Mokelumne River between the eastern end of Pardee Reservoir up to portions of the river’s north fork. The Calaveras County Water District board has expressed concerns that such a designation would restrict the district’s ability to use water reservations it holds on the Mokelumne River, which could potentially impair the district’s ability to serve future residents of Calaveras County.
Director Don Stump said he’d like to see “ironclad” language drafted that would not only protect CCWD’s interests in the Mokelumne but could also be used in similar situations throughout the region. Director Bob Dean agreed that “these issues are broader than the Mokelumne.”
Director Jeff Davidson said the Mokelumne Wild and Scenic Senate Bill 1199 was moving much too fast and advocated for the bill to be put on hold until a more collaborative process could take place. “I for one want to ask the (Calaveras County) board of supervisors to reconsider their recommendation for Wild and Scenic,” Davidson said.
The CCWD Board of Directors was made aware that the Calaveras County Board of Supervisors had recently voted to bring the Wild and Scenic discussion back as an agenda item. While the board said this was a step in the right direction, directors felt that by the time Wild and Scenic was agenized in a couple of months, it may be too late to have any impact on the legislation.
Director Stump said he felt CCWD needed to take a more active role in the legislative process.
“This is a critical issue,” he said. “I see this as the future of Calaveras County. I think we need to do more. Let’s fix this thing before it does serious damage to the county.”
Director Dennis Dooley said even if amendments were made to the bill, there was nothing to stop a Wild and Scenic designation from “morphing into something else even more onerous in the future.”
“That spooks me more than anything,” Dooley said.
Board president Scott Ratterman said he didn’t think the Wild and Scenic debate was “all or nothing” however, his main concern was looking out for the interests of CCWD first and foremost.
At the end of the discussion, the board directed staff to formally request that the board of supervisors withdraw its support of the Wild and Scenic designation and send a letter to Sen. Hancock’s office requesting the legislation be withdrawn until an inclusive, collaborative discussion including stakeholders can take place. Directors instructed staff to work with area partners, including the Upper Mokelumne River Watershed Authority and the Calaveras Amador Mokelumne River Authority.
Directors emphasized the importance of continuing to work closely with the East Bay Municipal Utility District during this process.
The second half of the meeting was devoted to outlining a strategic plan update for the district. Mitch Dion, former CCWD general manger, laid out a schedule of monthly board study sessions between June and
December that will include:
June: Complete the board of director’s vision for the future.
July: Compose a strategic road map, which defines areas of service.
August: Assess capacity capabilities.
September: Identify options and set objectives.
October: Analyze and assess options.
November: Review the strategic plan and approve it.
December: Look at tools to monitor progress.
Dion said it is crucial for boards to create strategic plans in order to give staff and the community a clear outline of short-term and long-term goals.
“This is a compass, not a map,” Dion said.
After the regular board meeting came to a close, the board took a short break before convening in closed session to conduct a performance review of Dion. Upon emerging from closed session, the board reported a 4-1 vote to terminate its contract with Dion, effective immediately.
To view the agenda and full board packet for the May 28 meeting, go to ccwd.org/board/board_agendas_2014.html. For more information, visit ccwd.org or call 754-3543. The next board meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday, June 11, at 120 Toma Court, San Andreas.
For more information, contact Joel Metzger, customer service/community relations manager, at 754-3123 or firstname.lastname@example.org.