Bolinas Community Public Utility District
A Regular  Meeting  Of  The Board  Of  Directors

February 18, 2004      270 Elm Road, Bolinas 

1.  Call to Order

7:30 p.m.

2.  Roll

Directors Amoroso, Bertsch, McClellan, Siedman, Smith present
Director Bertsch presiding

3.  Manager’s Report    

Research on the use of Ultraviolet radiation as a means of reducing trihalomethanes in the drinking water produced little in the way of municipal treatment                   applications.   Staff will research the use of Ozone as an alternative to Activated Carbon and report at the March meeting.  

Directors received copies of the Association of California Water Agencies’ Guidelines for Conduct booklet.

The ACWA JPIA is offering a workshop on Workers Compensation issues February 25 at Soquel Creek Water District.  There were no objections to closing         the office that day to permit staff to attend.
The Marin County Community Development Agency is seeking comment on the Notice of Preparation and Initial Study for the Countywide Plan Update 2004.        This matter will be placed on the agenda of the March meeting.  Staff will request an extension of time to comment on the Notice of Preparation because the draft     Countywide Plan Update was unavailable for review by the announced date.

4.  Community Expression

David Kimball mentioned that the 32 acre cliff side property claimed to be owned by Howard Sloane and Louis Smadbeck is still on the market.  Realtor David Smadbeck, suggesting that the matter will be referred to legal counsel if there is no sale by April, 2004, reportedly told Kimball he wants to sell the property to a land trust or someone who would preserve it as open space.   Bobbi Kimball distributed copies of a letter from Smadbeck’s attorney in which she contends that the County Assessor has erroneously labeled the property as County Open Space (C-OA) instead of Residential (R1:BD).  The original subdivision map indicates this parcel is Parkland, and in 1927, Arthur Smadbeck quitclaimed all the land designated as Parkland to the Bolinas Property Owner’s Association, with the understanding that title would pass to a municipal corporation when such was formed.   Today, BCPUD is that municipal corporation.

Robert Hunter stated that BCPUD is involved in certain issues, like the Class 1 Bikeway from the School to Mesa Road, and the Bolinas Lagoon Ecosystem Restoration Project, but seemingly disinterested in others, such as the property issue described in the foregoing paragraph.  He asked what BCPUD’s policy is.  Director Siedman said the Board deals with such issues on an ad hoc basis.  If people present their concerns to the Board, it will do what it can, jurisdictionally or policy-wise, to meet those concerns. Director Amoroso explained that BCPUD is guided by the Bolinas Community Plan.  Director McClellan commented that the Plan is open to interpretation and the Board needs to be careful about getting involved in issues over which it has no jurisdiction simply because the Plan addresses those issues.  He cited downtown parking as one such issue, noting that the Board is divided on whether it should be involved in this initiative.

Robert Hunter suggested that now is an ideal time, during the Countywide Plan Update, to strengthen the Bolinas Community Plan.  Hunter’s assertion that the Community Plan hasn’t been updated in 20 years was challenged by Amoroso, who cited the Gridded Mesa Plan’s adoption in 1985, and the amended Circulation Element in 1996 as two significant changes to the original plan.  There was no expressed opposition to considering a further update to the Plan.  Director Siedman agreed with Hunter that now may be an opportune time to seek clarification on the Smadbeck property, but Amoroso pointed out that the County already considers the property Open Space so maybe it should be left as is.

Cela O’Connor reported on the Weber Coastal Permit to remove the dikes on his property adjacent to Bolinas Lagoon, and to construct a game fence that O’Connor argued violates 100’ wetlands setback requirement.  Tomales Bay Association is suing the County and the Coastal Commission over the issuance of the permit.

5.  Coastal Permit Application (CP 04-12); Expanded Water Use Permit Application:  Salwen.  216 Ocean Parkway

Bobbi Kimball read a prepared statement to begin the discussion, reciting the history of the property.  She stated that the original neighborhood concerns about the size and height of the proposed structure remain unaddressed.    She also said the project goes against the Gridded Mesa Plan’s prohibition, in the bluff erosion zone, of an increase greater than 10% in the footprint of the structure.
Robert Hunter complained about the permit process and he alleged the applicant has disrespected her neighbors wishes.  As an example, he mentioned a request that the power lines be put underground to remove a utility pole on Ocean Parkway from the neighbors’ view.  Hunter also stated that the proposed project is not for a replacement structure, but would be a completely new house.  He expressed concern that if this project is approved, and the County is forced to change the zoning for the Smadbeck property, the Local Coastal Program and the Bolinas Community Plan may as well be thrown away.

Director Smith stated that this is a development project, not a replacement project, and that it goes against the Bolinas Community Plan.   Smith noted that no new construction is allowed on less than 10,000 square feet, and that such requirement is separate from the maximum 10% increase in floor area in the bluff erosion zone.  He said the County should track the cliff erosion as they are required to do by the Gridded Mesa Plan.  He also emphasized that the plan prohibits any development on substandard lots. 

Director McClellan indicated he would not support any rule that prohibits a property owner from rebuilding a house destroyed by fire.  Others quickly clarified this issue with reassurances that the original structure can be rebuilt, but it’s size cannot be increased.  Kimball emphasized that neighbors have been supportive of the applicant’s right to rebuild her house.  Smith stated the applicant should be allowed to rebuild the structure that was there.  He also recommended that water consumption be limited to historical usage.

Director Siedman, noting that the Board needs to see what happens with the Coastal Permit Application, commented that the project is not ripe for consideration of the expanded water use permit yet. 

Amoroso/Siedman       all in favor       to forward the neighbors letters to County of Marin and to note that the Board of Directors believes there is merit to the expressed concerns.   The letter will state that consideration of the Expanded Water Use Permit application is being continued until the ultimate scope of the project is more clearly defined.

When Marin County declares the applicant’s submittals are complete, there will be a 10 day appeal period.  The Designated Zoning Administrator’s hearing usually comes within two weeks following that notification.

The applicant’s architect, Jack Byars, read a letter from the applicant listing her concerns and feelings about the process to date.   She wrote that the neighbors opposed to the project are not interested in compromise.  She accused them of being manipulative, noting that they expanded their houses with no objections from her.
6.  National Park Service:  General Management Plan Update for Point Reyes National Seashore and the north District of Golden Gate National Recreation Area; review of analysis of NPS appraisal of AP# 188-090-14 (Pine Gulch Creek property); legal opinion re easement issue

Cela O’Connor reported on the most recent public meeting concerning the General Management Plan Update.  She indicated strong sentiment at the meeting for preserving agriculture within the park.  Asserting that Park management would like to see the ranches disappear, O’Connor stated that the official emphasis is on wildlife, not agriculture.

In its Concepts newsletter, the Park listed 5 alternatives for the management plan.  O’Connor indicated she wants an additional alternative, Concept 6, to be considered during the environmental review process, so that long-term agriculture in the park is viable.  She handed out copies of a letter from MarinWatch to the National Park Service, urging consideration of Concept 6.

Tony Lewis, noting that he is not as enamored of agriculture as O’Connor, expressed a preference for Concept 2.

Siedman/Amoroso     all in favor      to send a comment letter to the Park, echoing the MarinWatch letter.

The Board reviewed Norman Orr’s letter regarding the Park Service appraisal of BCPUD’s Pine Gulch Creek property, expressing disappointment in the letter’s paucity of new information, but stressing the importance of retaining Orr’s expertise during the negotiating process.
The Legal Committee offered to seek a legal opinion on the easement issue associated with the property.  Director Siedman noted that obtaining a favorable legal opinion regarding access should be enough to convince the Park to re-appraise the property.    

Amoroso/Siedman      all in favor       to seek a legal opinion, for a not-to-exceed cost of $5,000.  

Continued to the March meeting. 

7.  Resolution 499, Accepting Completion of the 270 Elm Road Painting Project

 Amoroso/McClellan       all in favor       to pass and adopt Resolution 499.

8.  Resolution 500, Amending Resolution 498 Establishing A Connection Charge For New Sewer Hookups; Stating Exceptions To The Sewer Moratorium Established By Resolution 259.

 Siedman/Amoroso         all in favor        to pass and adopt Resolution 500.

Director Amoroso stated that he wants it understood that BCPUD will restrict water use to the Bolinas Fire Protection District property at 100 Mesa Road as a way to make sure the District can comply with the language of Resolution 500 regarding operating the facility in compliance with RWQCB’s Waste Discharge Requirements.

Director Smith suggested, if compliance with the Waste Discharge Requirements becomes a problem, BCPUD might begin notifying the heaviest users that they must reduce consumption.

Staff will submit a brief article to the Hearsay explaining that this resolution makes it possible for the firehouse/medical clinic project to proceed according to design.  Without a sewer connection, BFPD may need the clinic space for its onsite waste disposal system.
9.    Olema-Bolinas Road Bicycle/Pedestrian Path:  letter of support to Marin County DPW

Public Works Engineer Jack Baker has requested a letter supporting the path, to be used in grant solicitations.   Previously available funding has been re-allocated to other projects.  
Siedman/Amoroso          all in favor         to send a letter of support.

10.    Governor Schwarzenegger’s Tax Shift:  proposed BCPUD letters to Governor, Senator John Burton, Assembly Member Joe Nation

The Governor’s budget proposal would increase the tax shift instituted in the early 1990’s.   Financial impact on BCPUD would be approximately $4,500 per year.     
Sideman/McClellan       all in favor       to send letters opposing the Governor’s tax shift to Senator Burton, Assembly member Nation and to Governor Schwarzenegger.

11.  Other Business

a.  Committee Reports

     -- Downtown Parking and Traffic: 

Directors received copies of the January 7, 2004 minutes. The February meeting examined the concept of shared enforcement.  It may be easier to contract with County of Marin than to form a separate district.   Next meeting is scheduled for March 10. 
     -- Mesa Septic, Flood Control and Roads:

The depth of the Evergreen water main has been determined, and it may lie at the elevation needed for the culvert.  The pilot project committee will clean out the existing culvert to see if that improves the flow, and a group of volunteers plan to dig out the Grove Road section of the drainage way.   The committee will not go forward with the culvert replacement until it has had a chance to gauge the effects of  these two changes.

Director Amoroso reported on the February 11 Septic Social, held at the Bolinas School.  This first in a 3 part series is a public outreach effort sponsored by Environmental Health and conducted by an independent septic consultant, Kit Rosefield.  Amoroso noted that he was the only BCPUD Director there.  He said Rosefield covered the basics and that he had interesting things to say about politics, also.   The State’s minimum-standards legislation, AB885, is now law but nobody knows quite what to do with it.    Amoroso stated that Rosefield indicated ultimately there will be mandatory inspections.  The next social will be March 1 at 7 p.m. at the school.

Amoroso urged the committee to seek grant funding for the drainage plan.   Director Bertsch stated that the committee needs to complete the pilot project first, demonstrating with a test area that good drainage works.  She recommended developing a clear plan before submitting grant applications.

       -- Park and Recreation: 

Directors received copies of the December 8, 2003 Mesa Park minutes.  Director Siedman mentioned that letters from Senator Burton, Assembly member Nation and Supervisor Kinsey, to RWQCB, regarding the reclamation project may be helping to move the process forward.  BCPUD must get the reclamation permit in order to qualify for the State grant.  Mesa Park’s engineer, HydroScience, is investigating the feasibility of the BCPUD lab, and BCPUD personnel, obtaining the necessary certification to do the coliform testing.
      -- Personnel:  update on hiring process for administrative assistant

There are 8 applicants to date.  Manager Buchanan recommended waiting until the first week in March to begin the process of reviewing the applications and deciding on the applicants to invite for an interview.   Director Bertsch indicated she will be out of the District from April 12 to May 12.  Buchanan will schedule the committee work so that a personnel committee recommendation is ready to present to the Board for action by the April meeting.

      -- Sewer:  Resource Recovery Project; Community Paths Group

Directors received copies of the Resource Recovery Project financial report for January.

Director Smith reported on the status of the path initiative and the work of the consultant who’s investigating alternative layouts..

b.  Minutes of January 21, 2004 Meeting

Siedman/Smith       all in favor      to approve the January 21, 2004 minutes as amended.

c.  Warrants

McClellan/Smith         to approve the warrants.

d.  Scheduling of Next Meeting(s)

March 17, 2004

12.  Adjournment

10:29 p.m.