Bolinas Community Public Utility District
A Regular Meeting  Of  The Board  Of  Directors
April 18, 2012     270 Elm Road, Bolinas


1.   Call to Order.

    7:32 p.m.

2.   Roll.

    Directors Amoroso, Bender, Kimball, Siedman and Smith present; director Siedman presiding.

3.   Manager’s Report.

-- Update on the Terrace Avenue Bluff Stabilization Project

Staff reported that SAGE submitted a response to the district’s request for cost revisions to its proposal for next phase of geotechnical engineering; the total price for the work is now$44,940.56.  David Kimball and staff reviewed the revised proposal and found it acceptable, as long as SAGE is willing to commit that this phase of work will provide all the necessary geotechnical information needed for the design and preparation of construction documents for both the in-kind repair of the road level retaining walls and the full bluff stabilization project.  Director Kimball requested that the proposal be placed on the agenda of the Board’s next regularly scheduled meeting in May for action.

--    Update on Terrace Avenue Water Main Relocation Project

Staff plans to have this project out to bid in June.

 -- Update on the Wharf Road Service Saddle Replacement Project

        This project is now out to bid.  It has been published in the Marin IJ, sent to the building exchanges in both Marin and Sonoma counties, and is posted on the BCPUD website.  There is a mandatory pre-bid meeting on May 3rd (which will include an important site assessment) and the bids are due on May 15th.   Staff will include an item to take action on the award of the project on the Board’s agenda for the next regularly scheduled meeting in May.

-- Update on Video Inspection of Sewer Laterals on Wharf, Park and Portions of Terrace Avenues

    The video inspection of  the Wharf Road sewer laterals is nearly complete.  Affected homeowners have been very cooperative and, overall, the results of the inspection are good.  Staff is reviewing all of the video tape and customers will be notified of needed repairs. 

-- Update on the Wastewater Treatment Plant Pump Station and Electrical Upgrade Project

This project has been on hold due to the staff time focused on the Wharf Road and Terrace Avenue projects, but staff plans to go out to bid on the project this summer.
Staff reported that water consumption in the district was up slightly in the quarter ending in March (i.e., the downtown area).  Overall, consumption is up very slightly so far in 2012 as compared to the same time last year.  Staff believes that the very dry January and February months are to blame for this rise in consumption and that in light of the rains during March and April, staff expects consumption to fall back down again in upcoming months.

Operationally, staff has nothing unusual to report.  In general, the shift operators are maintaining and repairing the treatment facilities regularly and there were no major leaks or other unusual occurrences to report since the last meeting.   Director Smith noted that he and Lewie Likover have developed a protocol for a series of experiments to evaluate how chlorine disinfection byproducts in the district’s drinking water rise due to detention time.  He emphasized that all of the district’s water sources must be evaluated and that this analysis is very precise to the district’s water.  The plan is to initially evaluate the district’s reservoir water as this water appears to be the most problematic due to high levels of total organic carbons (which interact with chlorine to form certain byproducts).

On the wastewater side of operations, the main effort has been the video inspection of the sewer laterals on Wharf Road.  Staff noted that this work is very time-consuming and commended Chief Operator Bill Pierce for running a very good project.  Staff also is preparing for spray season in the disposal fields, which are scheduled to be mowed within the next few weeks.

-- Drainage Project Manager’s Report.

Drainage Project Manager Lewie Likover submitted a written report.

4.    Community Expression.

Director Amoroso stated that residents are concerned about whether the garbage company is mixing garbage and recyclables.  Director Kimball said she has seen that the larger trucks have divided compartments and that garbage is put in one side and recyclables are put on the other side.  Director Siedman noted that the garbage and recyclables are, in fact, mixed in the smaller trucks that do not have divided compartments, but the material is then sorted and separated at the yard.

Director Kimball said that she will update the Board on the community bike path during the committee reports later on the agenda but since Janine Aroyan is in the audience, she wants to acknowledge that Janine volunteered her time supervising two hired laborers to repair the bike path upper median strip that recently was damaged by truck tires.  Director Kimball thanked Janine for her efforts.

Director Smith observed that Jennie Pfeiffer spoke with Steve Kinsey about solar inspections in West Marin and he told her that the County will work on developing a third-party inspection program. 

Cela O’Connor submitted a  request that the BCPUD e-mail its customers about an upcoming meeting about the BALTAC on April 19th.   Director Amoroso questioned who was sponsoring the meeting.  The Board did not take any action on Cela’s request. 

Janine Aroyan said that the Conservation Corps North Bay (“CCNB”), the entity that picks up garbage and recycling from the Bolinas beach entrances, is looking for other places to put their bins to obtain more recycling.  She said CCNB will approach the Downtown Park about installing bins there.

5.    Request for Financial Relief from Quarterly Water Bill pursuant to BCPUD Resolution 553 – 49 Terrace Avenue (Flanagan).

Ms. Flanagan received a bill in the amount of $452 for 6900 cubic feet of water used in one quarter; typically, this customer averages approximately 1366 cubic feet per quarter.  Upon investigation, a toilet leak was discovered.  Janine Aroyan was present on behalf of the customer and explained that there is an apartment downstairs below the main house where guests were staying in March. The guests did not realize the toilet was leaking.  A plumber has now fixed the problem.  Director Kimball said that the district has approved relief equal to 25 –50% of the amount attributable to the leak in toilet leak cases.  Director Smith said that the standard is 25% and that 50% forgiveness has been granted for financial hardship cases only; he said the Board’s rationale in past cases is that toilet leaks are not “blind” leaks but rather something that should be discovered and repaired with reasonable diligence.

D. Smith/K. Bender        all in favor        to approve financial relief equivalent to 25% of the amount of water attributable to the leak, as determined by the average amount of water used during the same billing quarter in the prior three years.

6.    Request that BCPUD Pay the Cost of Relocated Water Service to 126 Terrace Avenue (Lowe).

Staff explained that the customer feels that he should not be required to pay for the installation of a new water service on this property because he is not requesting that the district relocate the meter serving his property.  Staff reminded the Board that this meter is located on an adjacent private property across which the BCPUD has an easement;  however, those property owners are not willing to provide continued access across their property for purpose of reading this meter.  The BCPUD agreed to relocate the meter to the Terrace Avenue public right-of-way and has done so;  it is now necessary for the water service to be installed to the new meter.  Discussion ensued about costs and staff was directed to continue this item to the May meeting agenda for further discussion and potential action.

7.    Request for Information Concerning the Sale of the BCPUD’s Pine Gulch Creek Property, Budgets and Related Financial Information. (M. Lewis).

Director Siedman, noting that Matt Lewis was not present, said this matter will be deferred until after item 12 in the event Matt arrives later during the meeting.

8.    BCPUD Policy re: Public Requests to Amend the Minutes of a BCPUD Meeting.

Director Siedman noted that staff has prepared draft policy guidelines for the Board’s consideration.  After a brief discussion, staff was directed to prepare a resolution embodying the guidelines for the Board’s consideration at the next meeting.

9.    BCPUD Comments on State Water Resources Control Board’s Policy for Siting, Design, Operation and Management of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (OWTS) – Septic Systems.

Director Smith reviewed the draft policy and considered whether the BCPUD should submit a comment letter, but he has concluded that it would not be worthwhile.  The State did not incorporate any of the district’s prior comments on the previously issued draft policy except for the public education suggestion; in particular, the State has not incorporated the phylochip technology to trace pollution sources.  This is especially frustrating given that this technology is readily available and using it could avoid unnecessary septic system upgrades.  Director Smith said that the overall policy approach in the most recent draft policy has not changed much since the district submitted its previous comment letter.  The State is proposing a tiered approach to septic systems.  Engineered systems will be required for new or repaired systems in areas with shallow water tables and clay soils.  In addition, systems located within 600 feet of an “impaired water body” must employ disinfection and have three feet of separation from groundwater.   Bolinas Beach is on the federal list of water bodies impaired for pathogens.  Director Smith recommends that the district wait and see if the proposed policy is enacted and, if it is, the district should work with the County Environmental Health Services department to ensure a coherent implementation of the policy in Marin.  The Board had no objection.

10.  Resolution 610:  Consenting to Join the Health Benefits Program of the ACWA/JPIA, Ratifying the Action of the ACWA Health Benefits Authority Board of Directors to Terminate the Health Benefits Authority Joint Powers Agreement, and Authorizing and Directing the Bolinas Community Public Utility District to Execute all Necessary Documents.

B. Kimball/K. Bender        all in favor        to pass Resolution 610.

11.    Discuss Amendment of BCPUD Resolution 247 (Water Service Termination Procedures).

Director Smith said that in light of the district’s enactment of its new resolution regarding suspended water meters, the district should incorporate a comparable reinstatement procedure for terminated water service. He suggested the reinstatement fee should be less than for suspended water service reinstatement because terminated water service reinstatement requires less administrative work.  Director Amoroso noted that there is administrative time involved in conducting the hearing to reinstate a terminated water service.  Director Bender suggested that the reinstatement fee should be one-half the amount for suspended water meter reinstatement, or $1,000.  Director Amoroso said perhaps “up to $1,000” and director Siedman suggested “the actual cost to the district, up to $1,000”.  Director Kimball said that she believes the fee may need to depend on the specific facts of the termination of service.  Director Siedman directed staff to include an item on the May agenda to amend Resolution 247.

12.    Update on Water Supply Augmentation Project.

    Director Smith reported that next week he, Bill Pierce and Mike Aitken, supervised by the district’s consulting hydro-geologist Rob Gailey, will install the pressure transducer in the irrigation well at the Resource Recovery Site and will install the accompanying monitoring software on the district’s laptop computer.  The district will begin a monitoring protocol to establish baseline conditions so that those conditions can be compared against conditions when Mesa Park starts using the well water to irrigate the ballfields.  In addition, the district will evaluate the barometric efficiency at the site to attain a better understanding of those dynamics and how they affect the underlying water table.  Director Smith noted that the equipment cost was approximately $3,500.  Director Amoroso said that this cost should be paid for from the district’s water study budget.  Director Kimball agreed, noting that at the recent Finance Committee meeting, it was confirmed that the Board should identify each source of revenue for unbudgeted expenses such as this one.

7.    Request for Information Concerning the Sale of the BCPUD’s Pine Gulch Creek Property, Budgets and Related Financial Information. (M. Lewis).

Director Siedman noted that it is now approximately 9:00 p.m. and Matt Lewis is not present for this item.  Director Kimball reported that the Finance Committee met the prior day, evaluated all funds expended from the proceeds of the sale of the BCPUD’s Pine Gulch Creek property, and developed a full accounting of the expenditures.  The Finance Committee plans to review the accounting at its next meeting and will present it at the Board’s next regular meeting in May.  Staff was directed to inform Matt Lewis about these developments.

13.  Volunteer Committee Reports

-- Alternative Energy:  Nothing to report.

-- Bolinas Lagoon Technical Advisory Committee:  Nothing further to report.

-- Community Path Update: Director Kimball reported that she met with Pete Maendle from the County road crew and that they agree that drivers coming from downtown cannot foresee that the road moves to the west after the intersection at Mesa Road, which is why there have been problems with people driving over the planted median strip on the east side of the road.  Director Kimball said that plants will be removed from the first 30 feet of the median strip at the top of the hill and base rock will be installed, along with reflectors along the side of the road to help drivers see the edge of pavement. 

-- Downtown Parking & Traffic Committee:  Nothing to report.

-- Resource Recovery: Nothing to report.

-- West Marin Mosquito Control Coordinating Council:  Director Kimball reported that the next meeting of the council is April 30, 2012.

14.       Other Business

a.  Board Committee Reports

-- Finance:  Update on Draft Fiscal Year 2012-2013 Budget. Director Amoroso reported that the district will be proposing an increase of $67 (or 7%) to the annual service charge for water service and an increase of $24 (or 2%) to the annual service charge for sewer service.  Director Kimball noted that page two of the budget identifies the use of proceeds from the sale of the Pine Gulch Creek project, as well as use of the district’s designated (or reserve) funds.  Discussion then ensued about the text of the Proposition 218 notice to be mailed to customers to explain the proposed annual service charge increases and director Bender offered to revise the notice accordingly and send it to staff for final edits.  As the Finance Committee will be meeting again on May 1st and since the notice must be sent out by no later than May 4th, the Board delegated authority to the Finance Committee to finalize the Proposition 218 notice.

-- Legal:  Nothing to report.

-- Mesa Septic, Flood Control and Roads:  Nothing to report.

-- Operations:  Nothing to report.

    -- Park and Recreation:  Director Siedman reported that the improvements to the Downtown Park are moving along; the next step is to install landscaping.  The goal is to have the park completed by no later than early November. 

-- Personnel:   Staff reported that agreement has been reached between the staff and the Personnel Committee on a 3% raise for fiscal year 2012-2013.  A revised Memorandum of Understanding will be included on the agenda of the next regular Board meeting in May for approval by the Board.  Director Kimball reported that she and director Siedman are collecting data and interviewing other agencies concerning their health care benefits to determine whether there are other more affordable options out there for the district to consider. 

-- Sewer:    Nothing to report.

b. Minutes of March 7, 2012 Special Meeting; Minutes of March 21, 2012 Regular Meeting

    Director Amoroso offered an amendment to the minutes of the March 7, 2012 special meeting to include a summary paragraph at the end of the minutes to clarify the decisions reached at the meeting.

D. Smith/K. Bender        all in favor    to approve the minutes of the March 7, 2012 special meeting, as amended.

Directors Amoroso and Smith offered clarifying corrections to the minutes of the March 21, 2012 regular meeting.

K. Bender/B. Kimball    all in favor    to approve the minutes of the March 21, 2012 regular meeting, as corrected.

c. Warrants

D. Smith/V. Amoroso        all in favor    to approve the warrant list.

d. Scheduling of Next Meeting(s) 

May 16, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.

15.  Adjournment.

    9:36 p.m.