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

May 19, 2004      270 Elm Road, Bolinas

1. Call to Order: 8pm

2. Roll

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

3. Manager’s Report 

Board members met Julie Beach, administrative assistant, hired April 26, 2004

Board members received copies of the May 12, 2004 Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) Communications Brief stating that Governor Schwarzenegger supports a $1.3 billion budget deal with local governments that will help alleviate the state’s financial crisis. The proposed agreement shifts an additional $350 million to the state this year and next (2004-05 and 2005-06). In exchange, special districts have a commitment from the Governor to support a constitutional initiative that would protect local agencies’ tax revenue in the future.

Board members received copies of The Comprehensive Traffic Management Plan. schedule of upcoming public workshops, which are part of an environmental review process addressing parklands traffic congestion and public access issues. 

Staff reported there is still a possibility that the Reusch property, a 35-acre parcel adjacent to the sewerage treatment plant property, may be offered to BCPUD. Details could be available by the June meeting.

Staff reported workers at Waste Management (WM) are on strike over wage issues. WM expects a protracted labor/management struggle. They are importing 100 employees from other areas during the strike.

4. Community Expression

Francesca Vietor read a statement from her husband, Mark Hertsgaard, requesting a sister city relationship with the town of San Francisco, Nayarit, Mexico. Implementing this relationship would help support the citizens of San Francisco as they organize to defeat a proposed resort project that may block tidal action in their estuary, a body of water similar to the Bolinas Lagoon. San Francisco is in the path of the Pacific Flyway, and damage to the estuary could negatively impact the migratory bird population. A resolution in the support of the proposal will be placed on the agenda of the June meeting.

David Kimball reported that the Bolinas Rod and Boat Club have joined the protest over the addition of rock to the Seadrift abutment.  The controversy centers on the scope of work and whether a Coastal Development Permit should be required. 

5. Coastal Permit Application 04-31:  Gallagher
              Project Location: 10 Mesa Road

The project proposes renovating an existing accessory structure to create a workshop area and storage space and to expand an existing deck from 50 feet to 150 feet. Staff will inform the Marin County Community Development Agency that an Expanded Water Use Permit application must be filed with BCPUD if the project will require a building or use permit.

6. West Nile Virus Task Force (WNVTF) Report:  Stacey Henderson

West Nile Virus (WNV) bird and animal infection has been reported in 8 states. However, there are no confirmed human cases so far this year. There have been no reported cases of WNV in Marin County.

Marin Sonoma Mosquito and Vector Control District (MSMVCD) is in phase II of its process to create a ballot measure adding an additional  $16.00 to each homeowner’s property tax bill. If approved, the measure would provide funding for four additional employees to perform mosquito abatement in Marin and Sonoma Counties.

7. Policy Review:  Expanded Water Use Permits

The Board reviewed its past consideration of 4 Expanded Water Use Permit applications. The Board also reviewed a listing of all conditional Expanded Water Use Permits issued to date.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Specifically discussed was how the maximum quarterly allowance is established in cases where a derelict or destroyed building is remodeled or rebuilt, second units, new construction and transferred water meters

Director McClellan stated that the Expanded Water Use Permit rules must be applied consistently to each case.

8. Draft Policy Re Hazardous Trees in BCPUD Rights-of-Way

The Board reviewed a draft document prepared by Director McClellan outlining key points of a proposed amendment to BCPUD Ordinance 30, V., Obstructions, and recommended budgeted expenditures for tree removal.                                                       

Director McClellan pointed out that BCPUD must determine if this ordinance would be enforceable in cases where BCPUD rules specific tree (s) are dangerous. Director Siedman indicated he thought the ordinance would be enforceable since BCPUD has the responsibility for roads as well as obstructions and dangerous conditions in the right-of- way. BCPUD could remove the dangerous condition and if the person responsible for the creating the condition is determined, BCPUD could bill the property owner.  Director Siedman pointed out that BCPUD would have to sue to collect. Director Siedman also pointed out that the ordinance’s language should be very specific and pointed out the example, “near the right-of-way” as language that is not appropriately specific.

Director Bertsch suggested budgeting to maintain a balance of $20,000 annually for tree removal. Unused monies would carry forward yearly. Any monies carried forward to the future year would be supplemented in order to maintain a $20,000 annually.  If a larger budget is required in future years, it could be increased.

Director Amoroso indicated that BCPUD should share costs with property owners where appropriate.

Continued to next month.

9. Terrace Avenue Pipeline Relocation Project

BCPUD has reached an oral understanding regarding a utility easement with the property owner at Terrace and Overlook.  BCPUD will remove trees across a northern portion of the property and replace the existing fence. In exchange, the property owner will give BCPUD an easement for the new pipeline. The existing line is threatened by cliff erosion.

Discussion followed concerning the possible loss of lower Terrace Avenue between house numbers 31 and 47. If the road is lost both here and near the intersection with Overlook, as many as 40 homes could be isolated.

Director Bertsch suggested that a letter be written to the County putting them on notice that if these cliffs fall, as many as 40 houses would loose access to their homes. 

Director Smith pointed out that it would cost far less money for the County to maintain the bulkhead between house numbers 31 and 47 than to wait until is completely destroyed. He further pointed out that the County has a duty to protect health and safety.

Amoroso/Siedman all is favor to send a letter to the county stating these concerns and putting them on notice.

10. Marin County Wide Plan Update

David Kimball reported that the plans for developing the Silvera property on the 101 corridor are a hotly debated issue. Two other main issues are the need for affordable housing and the potential shortage of water resources any added development might cause since Marin can’t count on water from the Russian River.

Director Amoroso asked if there was interest in revising and updating Community Plans. Kimball replied that his sense is that regular review of Community Plans will be required, but not regular updates unless the review so mandates.

11. Pine Gulch Creek property (AP# 188-090-14): NPS letter re easement/appraisal

The National Park Service (NPS), responding to BCPUD’s request for a reappraisal for Lawrence Baskin’s written opinion that a court would rule in our favor for widening the access easement across the adjacent property, has written the district to say that they will only re-appraise after the easement problem is resolved. In the letter NPS also asks for a timeline for any known action BCPUD takes.

Siedman/McClellan all in favor to send a letter to NPS indicating BCPUD will seek cooperation from the adjacent property owner based on the legal opinion, but will go to court if no response is received by June 15, 2004

12. Board of Directors Pay Increase Proposal 

Director Don Smith noted the difficulty of getting people to run for the BCPUD Board. The shortage of candidates can mean that the Board doesn’t well-represent Bolinas residents if an array of candidates with differing views is not available for voters to select. He suggested that it would help encourage candidates to run if the current $125.00 dollar a month stipend each Director receives, a rate established in 1974, is increased to more appropriately compensate the work of a Director.  He proposes that it take effect after current terms expire.

Director Amoroso objected to the idea of 2 different pay rates during the transition period. He pointed out that serving as a Director can diminish one’s time for earning income because of the amount of work involved and that increasing the stipend might make serving on the Board more attractive to potential candidates. He stated that the current time is not the correct time to raise the stipend.   

Directors Siedman and Bertsch expressed reservations about the proposal.
No action was taken.

Director McClellan left the meeting at 10:25 pm

13. Norcal Environmental Student Network: 

Request for contribution to water quality monitoring training program.
Directors declined approval of the request.

14. Sister City Proposal: 

Pursuant to the discussion during community expression, the board acted as follows:
Bertsch/Smith 4 ayes, McClellan absent, to take the steps necessary to establish the relationship. Continued to June Meeting.

15. Other Business

a. Committee Reports

Downtown Parking and Traffic:

Amoroso/Siedman 4 ayes, McClellan absent to appoint Fire Chief Anita Tyrell-Brown to the committee.

Director Amoroso reported that his approach is to provide Bolinas residents with 35 specifically protected parking places for access to downtown businesses, services and recreation. He said he favors County parking enforcement with BCPUD involvement. A different approach committee members suggest is to use parking restrictions to limit tourist access to the downtown beach, which Amoroso indicated he doesn’t think will work. Overall, the plan is not to add additional parking spaces.  Staff suggested the Board should encourage local residents to use alternative transportation to the downtown to help alleviate the traffic congestion. Director Amoroso suggested a walker’s depot, similar to the one that used to be at the intersection of Elm with Overlook where riders and drivers could connect with each other.

Director Smith mentioned he has requested the County to remove the No Parking signs on Terrace Avenue at Ocean Avenue because there is extremely limited parking space on Ocean. The property owner on Terrace at ocean has told Smith he has no problem with the proposal.

The Committee has expanded the study area to include all of Terrace Avenue and Olema-Bolinas Road to the Mesa Park intersection.

Finance:  2004-05 budget

The current draft proposes increasing the annual water charge by $24.00, the sewer charge by $29.00, and the charge for septic/drainage by $48.00. Only one written protest has been received to date. The proposed budget does not include funding for the needed repairs to the water and sewer systems, nor for any increase in the administrative assistant’s hours, any related expenses will be drawn from reserves, as needed, and replenished in the next fiscal year.

Budget Public hearing is June 16, 2004.


Director Siedman attended a Law of Easements conference and provided relevant materials to the Board. He pointed out the information about public easements. Specifically, BCPUD owns the land the unpaved roads are on. Regarding the 47-acre Smadbeck parcel, adjacent to Ocean Parkway, BCPUD may own this land for parkland, but when a public entity owns land and the entity doesn’t do anything to improve it, there is no liability for unauthorized recreational use of that land.

Director Siedman also reviewed an invoice to BCPUD from attorney Hadden Roth. There were no objections to Director Siedman contesting the charges with Roth. Staff is not authorized to pay the bill until the matter is resolved. 

Director Amoroso suggested BCPUD start interviewing alternate lawyers.

Mesa Septic, Flood Control and Roads:

Matt Lewis reported on a site visit by selected pilot project committee members, accompanied by representatives from Marin County DFW and the Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB). The RWQCB official indicated that installing culverts to lower the water table through the Larch swale would require a permit, but issuance of such a permit would be problematic because of the possibility of contaminated runoff reaching the ocean, and because of negative impact on the wetlands. The officials noted that drainage could be improved simply by removing non-native plants and man made materials, which would not require a permit. Lewis suggested a volunteer community cleanup effort.

Park and Recreation: Mesa Park:  Notice of Availability of Initial Study;
Notice of Intent to Adopt Negative Declaration:  water reclamation project

Staff will publish the notices in the Hearsay and make it clear that the opportunity to address this issue will be at 8pm on June 16, 2004.


The Memorandum of Understanding with BCPUD employees is tentatively scheduled for approval at the June 16th, 2004 board meeting.

Director Amoroso pointed out that Phil Buchanan is retiring in 2005 and a work plan with timeline is needed for finding a replacement.  The Board directed Buchanan to create this timeline.

Sewer:  Resource Recovery Project; Community Paths Group.

Resource Recovery may soon be the recipient of a $9,000 grant from the National Park Service for improvements to the site.

Director Smith reported that Phase One of the Path Project is in limbo due to a lack of money. With respect to Phase Two, DPW engineer Jason Nutt will meet with the group to discuss Phase One-Phase Two interface at Olema-Bolinas and Mesa Roads. Following that, the Phase Two plan will be ready to present to the community.

 b. Minutes of April 21, 2004 Meeting:

Amoroso/Siedman 4 ayes, McClellan absent to approve the May 21, 2004 minutes.

  c. Warrants
Siedman/Amoroso 4 ayes, McClellan absent to approve the warrants.

  d.  Scheduling of Next Meeting(s)

June 16, 2004

Joan Bertsch will make an announcement to the community that she will resign from the Board effective September 1, 2004. Planning for her replacement will be placed on next month’s agenda.

17. Adjournment 12:01 A.M.