Bolinas Community Public Utility District
A Regular Meeting  Of  The Board  Of  Directors
July 25, 2012     270 Elm Road, Bolinas


1.   Call to Order.

    7:42 p.m.

2.   Roll.

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

3.   Manager’s Report.

        The Manager was not present due to an emergency; the Board therefore deferred the Manager’s Report.

4.    Community Expression.
      Director Siedman noted that no members of the public were present and asked if any of the Board members had any community expression items.  Director Smith noted that the Board books include an e-mail from Cela O’Connor requesting a record of any contacts the BCPUD had with the contractor or the County of Marin regarding the Terrace Avenue slide repair project and asked what that was about.  Director Siedman said that staff should contact Cela to ask for clarification as to what she is asking for as the request seems overbroad; there was no objection from the Board.

5.    Hunt Coastal Permit (CP 12-11) and Design Review (DR 12-74), APN# 188-170-53, 280 Mesa Road, Bolinas.

Director Smith commented that although this property is outside the district, the Board included it on the agenda in the event any member of the public wished to comment.  Director Siedman said there were no written comments submitted and no one is present to address the Board on this agenda item.   The Board concurred that the district has no comment on this permit application.

6.    Request for Financial Relief from Quarterly Metered Water Delivery Bill pursuant to BCPUD Resolution 553 - 510 Evergreen Road (P. Brook).

Director Siedman stated that the Board has received a letter from Pegan Brooke at 510 Evergreen Road explaining she had a blind leak under her patio and submitting evidence that it was repaired immediately after it was discovered.  Director Smith noted that in such cases, the Board has forgiven the entire amount attributable to the leak as determined by the three-year average water use during the same quarter in prior years.

B. Kimball/K. Bender        all in favor        to reduce the amount of the bill by the amount attributable to the leak, as determined by the prior three years historical average water use during the same billing quarter.

    Director Smith observed that it required a tremendous amount of time and money for this customer to locate the leak due to its location; he said that the district has leak detection equipment that may be of use in such circumstances and he suggested that, for an appropriate fee to cover district costs, that the district offer staff and equipment to help locate blind leaks.  He said such a policy could save customers money and save the district lost water as a result of quicker repairs.  After some discussion, the Board concurred that assuming staff has no objection, this service should be publicized to local plumbers. 

7.    Request for Financial Relief from Quarterly Metered Water Delivery Bill pursuant to BCPUD Resolution 553 – 80 Terrace Avenue (N. Franklin).

Director Siedman stated that this customer was granted financial relief at the same property, which is vacant, earlier in the year and discussion ensued as to whether customers are limited in the number of requests for relief that may be submitted in a single year.   The Board reviewed Resolution 553 and concluded there is no such limitation.  Director Smith noted that this water loss also was due to a blind leak and that the customer called an outside leak detection company to come find it as there was no obvious source of the leak.  He therefore moved that the Board forgive the entire amount attributable to the leak, as it did in with the prior request.

D. Smith/V. Amoroso        all in favor    to reduce the amount of the bill by the amount attributable to the leak, as determined by the prior three years historical average water use during the same billing quarter.

    Director Smith noted this isn’t the first leak at a vacant property and suggested the district include a notice to customers for those property owners whose homes are vacant or minimally used to ask the district to shut off their meters when no one is at the house.  The Board concurred and director Smith agreed to follow-up with staff.

8.    Response to Marin County Civil Grand Jury Report:  Pre-Schoolers Learn to Share – Can Local Government?

Director Siedman introduced the agenda item and director Smith noted that staff has prepared a written response to the grand jury report that he thinks is appropriate under the circumstances; namely, due to the district’s geographical isolation, it is very difficult to share resources with other districts.  To the extent it is possible, the district already does so and the staff response details those efforts. 

D. Smith/B. Kimball        all in favor    to approve the BCPUD response to the Marin County Civil Grand Jury Report:  Pre-Schoolers Learn to Share – Can Local Government?

9.    2012 Local Agency Biennial Notice – Conflict of Interest Code.

The Board reviewed the district’s current conflict of interest code, which was amended in 2008 to comply with existing law and any amendments to it.  Director Amoroso noted that staff reviewed the code and  recommended that no revisions are necessary.  Director Kimball therefore moved that the district submit the notice indicating no amendments are necessary.

B. Kimball/K. Bender        all in favor    to submit the 2012 Local Agency Biennial Notice indicating that no amendment of the district’s conflict of interest code is required.

    Neshama Franklin joined the meeting at that point and the Board explained the action taken during item 7.  Ms. Franklin thanked the Board profusely and left the meeting.

10.    Update on Water Supply Augmentation Project.

Director Smith directed the Board’s attention to a report in the binders submitted by the district’s consulting hydro-geologist, Rob Gailey, concerning the irrigation well at the Resource Recovery Center property.   He noted that  data has been downloaded from the pressure transducer that was installed in the irrigation well and there are some interesting preliminary results.  First, the available data shows a clear correlation between the tides and the level of water in the well.  Director Smith explained that this means tidal water is moving through soil to influence the entire aquifer and the water levels in the well show this perfectly.  In response to questions, director Smith says this does not mean that salt water is intruding into the well water (chemical tests would be needed to determine that); rather, the tide is exerting pressure to influence the water level.  Director Smith further noted that the preliminary data also indicates a relationship between the well water level and pumping events; he reviewed the results in some detail for the Board and then said that a long-term goal of this data gathering and analysis will be to calculate the holding capacity per cubic foot of the aquifer.  Director Smith said he is very encouraged at this point that the district will be able to obtain the data it needs over the long-term to analyze the viability and capacity of the well without having to install numerous nearby monitoring wells.  After a brief discussion, the Board agreed to keep this item as a regular item on the agenda so that progress reports can be given as additional information is obtained from the pressure transducer.

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

Director Smith reminded the Board that it has cleaned up the abandoned and suspended water meter situations and adopted Resolution 609 last spring which also restated the conditions for getting a water meter out of suspension.   The district also has Resolution 247, which applies to the termination of water service, but it does not clearly state the conditions for reinstating a terminated water service.  For the sake of completeness and clarity, director Smith feels the Board should amend Resolution 247 to clearly state those conditions, most specifically to include a fee that reflects the district’s costs of reinstating a terminated service, which will be much less than reinstating a suspended water service as it does not involve placement of the annual service fee on the County tax bill.  Discussion ensued about different approaches for establishing a fee;  director Kimball noted that the County has different fees for procedures depending on whether public hearings are involved, or not.  Eventually the Board decided to defer further discussion of the agenda item pending staff input on the establishment of a fee to cover the district’s costs.  Director Smith said he will not be present at the August Board meeting.  Staff was directed to include copies of Resolution 609 in the Board binders for the September meeting.  Director Kimball noted that there are a number of foreclosed homes in town and the district should be sure to follow-up on payment (and responsibility therefore) of the quarterly metered water rates as well as the annual service charge for those properties.

12.    Resolution 613:  Approving the 2012-13 District Budget.

V. Amoroso/B. Kimball        all in favor    to approve Resolution 613.

13.    Resolution 614:  Replaces Resolution No. 602, Stating the Current Rates and Charges for District Services and Authorizing Placement of Charges on the Marin County Property Tax Bill Where Appropriate.

K. Bender/D. Smith        all in favor    to approve Resolution 614.

14.    Resolution 615:  Accepting Completion of the Wharf Road Service Saddle Replacement Project.

K. Bender/B. Kimball        all in favor    to approve Resolution 615, subject to the general manager’s discretion to modify terms as appropriate.

15.  Volunteer Committee Reports

-- Alternative Energy:  Nothing to report.

-- Bolinas Lagoon Technical Advisory Committee:   Director Amoroso noted that there is a letter in the Board binders from the Bolinas Rod & Board Club to Supervisor Kinsey expressing concern about a reduction in the number of meetings per year of the BaLTAC, which is now going to be named the Bolinas Lagoon Advisor Council, and the proposed imposition of term limits on Council members.   Director Siedman suggested that the Board write a letter of support to Supervisor Kinsey for the Rod & Boat Club’s concerns; discussion ensued, with the other Board members readily expressing support for such a letter.

-- Community Path Update:    Director Kimball reported that PG&E came to town in June and weed-whacked around two of its poles adjacent to the Olema-Bolinas Road bike path, thereby removing numerous plants from the planted median strip.  PG&E claims such action is necessary for public (fire) safety, but after some discussion, has agreed that if the BCPUD will trim the plants in the median strip near the power poles twice a year, it would be willing to enter into a vegetation management plan agreement with the district and forego the weed-whacking.  Director Kimball requested the Board’s support for entering into such an agreement.  Director Kimball also said that many local plant experts are advising her to irrigate the damaged area, especially because it has been such a dry spring and summer, and the extent of the flat portion of the planted median (the plants on the hill up to the intersection with Mesa Road are doing fine).  Director Kimball estimates the irrigation hosing can be purchased for approximately $400 and installed with volunteer labor.  The water will be sourced from the nearby hydrants, except for the section near the Peace Barn, which will be sourced from the Buell property with appropriate credits to their water bill.  She asked for the Board’s support for irrigating the planted median, as well.  After a brief discussion, the Board expressed its support for both issues and complimented director Kimball for her dedication and perseverance.

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

-- Resource Recovery:  Nothing to report.

-- West Marin Mosquito Control Coordinating Council:  Nothing to report.

16.       Other Business

a.  Board Committee Reports

-- Finance:   Nothing to report.

-- Legal:  Nothing to report.

-- Mesa Septic, Flood Control and Roads:  Director Smith reported that per the Board-approved pilot project, he surveyed the Mesa for potholes deep enough to constitute an obstruction under Ordinance 30 (meaning 4-inches or deeper) and the staff filled the potholes with road base.  Somewhat to his surprise, there were only 13 qualifying potholes on the Mesa, which he said illustrates just how deep 4 inches is, as there are a lot of remaining potholes on the Mesa Roads.  On a related note, director Smith said it was unlikely that the district will receive any more ground asphalt to potentially apply to its dirt roads as revised state procedures now allow contractors to reuse ground-asphalt in new paving jobs, thereby eliminating the economic incentive for contractors to try and dispose of such spoils in nearby communities.

-- Operations:  Nothing to report.

-- Park and Recreation:  Director Amoroso reported that he missed the most recent Mesa Park Board meeting, but is aware that Mesa Park will be including a item on the November ballot for the election of its directors, as well as a measure to renew the parcel tax that funds its activities, at a rate of $49/year (a $4 increase over the current $45 annual parcel tax).   Director Siedman reported that the July 4th celebration downtown went well and people love the new park;  there will be a grand opening on Labor Day.  The park also soon will be named and the bathrooms will be open all day.  Director Siedman met with County representatives recently at the park to discuss a proposal to cost-share the maintenance of the bathroom; the concept is that a local person will be hired to maintain both public restrooms in town (the new park bathrooms and the County bathrooms near the tennis courts).  In the meantime, Roger Peacock is still the project manager for the downtown park and he is overseeing maintenance of the bathrooms.

-- Personnel:  Director Siedman reported that he and director Kimball (whom he thanked for doing the majority of the work) have evaluated the district’s employee health care plan and are discussing possible changes with the staff.  The changes will require revisions to the Memorandum of Understanding between the Board and staff, so directors Siedman and Kimball plan to make a specific proposal for the Board’s consideration after discussions with the staff are complete.

-- Sewer:    Nothing to report.

b. Minutes of the June 20, 2012 Regular Meeting.

    Directors Amoroso and Smith offered  revisions to correct typographical errors in the minutes.

D. Smith/K. Bender        four in favor, director Kimball abstaining    to approve the minutes of the June 20, 2012 regular meeting, as revised.

c. Warrants

B. Kimball/K. Bender    all in favor    to approve the warrant list.

d. Scheduling of Next Meeting(s) 

    August 15, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.

17.  Adjournment.

    8:57 p.m.