Public Utility District
Meeting Of The Board Of Directors
December 17, 2008 270 Elm Road, Bolinas
1. Call to Order
Directors Amoroso, Kimball, McClellan, Siedman and Smith
present; director Siedman presiding.
3. Report on December 10, 2008 Closed Session of the BCPUD
Board of Directors.
A closed session of the Board was held on December 10th
to confer with legal counsel regarding potential litigation; at this time,
the Board has taken no action.
4. Manager’s Report
Staff reported that the anticipated repairs to the generator
at the Woodrat Water Treatment Plant will be less than initially projected
due to the fact that it will not be necessary to rewind the entire unit.
Unfortunately, the rat infestation did cause significant damage; staff is
taking measures to ensure that such damage will not recur.
In other repair news, staff fixed a leak on the Arroyo
Hondo transmission line during the first week of December. Staff also
remedied a major leak on Brighton today which was caused by a burst service
– the fourth such service break on the distribution system in the last six
months. Staff plans to develop a prioritization plan to replace all
of the services and saddles on Brighton and Wharf Roads, most of which are
badly deteriorated due to corrosion. There is a possibility the County
may be repaving a portion of Wharf Road in the next year or so, so the district
should complete any service/saddle replacements in advance of that.
Staff also repaired a leak on Cedar near Alder Road the previous evening.
Overall, consumption declined in the most recent quarter as compared to the
same time last year.
Staff reminded the Board of the need to review a recent
invitation from the California Department of Public Health (“CDPH”) to submit
an application for loan funds to pay for a planning and evaluation analysis
of the district’s water distribution system. The application deadline
is at the end of February. In related news, the district’s application
to CDPH for loan funds to move the water main off of Terrace Avenue at Surfer’s
Overlook has cleared environmental review with a “categorical exemption”
Staff reported on a call from the Marin County Board of
Supervisors staff indicating that the Board of Supervisors ratified the BCPUD’s
recently updated Conflict of Interest Code. Also, staff reported that
the National Park Service is continuing its efforts to resolve all documentation
necessary for its purchase of the BCPUD’s Pine Gulch Creek property; in particular,
the NPS is hoping to obtain Department of Justice clearance prior to the
upcoming change in administration.
Staff directed the Board’s attention to a recent non-compliance
notice sent to a customer with an expanded water use permit. This is
an example of a preliminary non-compliance notice that the district sends
out; most customers never reach the “enforcement” stage that occurred at
the prior meeting.
On the wastewater side of operations, a new pump was installed
during the first week of December at the downtown lift station; as such,
the district now has full pumping capacity in the collection system prior
to the winter storm season. In addition, a new aerator has been installed
at the sewer treatment ponds. Staff continues to modify the lighting
at the sewer pond lab building to adequately illuminate the solar arrays
and minimize impact on nearby property owners.
-- Update on the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) Accessibility of
the BCPUD Building.
Revised building plans have been submitted in response to requests from the
Building Department and staff is hopeful that a permit will be issued within
the next month.
-- Drainage Project Manager’s Report
State Water Quality Control Board (“SWQCB”) staff has recommended that the
state fully fund the BCPUD/NPS/County project proposal submitted under Proposition
84 for water quality improvement projects affecting Duxbury Reef. Formal
action by the SWQCB is scheduled for January 20, 2009. Staff reminded
the Board that the three agencies jointly requested $1,479,000, with $570,000
specifically requested by the BCPUD to conduct an assessment of the Bolinas
Mesa stormwater network, create a surface water flow model and design and
implement low impact development (“LID”) best management practices (“BMPs”)
to manage and treat stormwater and improve water quality at Duxbury Reef.
5. Community Expression
Director Siedman noted that the district received a letter
from a customer requesting clarification as to the per-person daily water
consumption in the district. Staff stated that the district has information
about per-household daily water consumption, but does not have sufficient
information about the per-household occupancy to provide a per-person usage.
Director Smith said he previously calculated per-person consumption to be
approximately 80 gallons per day, based on an assumption that there are 2.5
persons per household and approximately 600 households on the water system.
The customer also inquired whether the district has a procedure to limit
water consumption in the district. Staff was directed to follow-up
with this customer about the per-person consumption estimate and expanded
water use permit process.
6. Request for Financial Relief from Quarterly Water Bill
due to Unintentional Water Loss (pursuant to BCPUD Resolution 553) – 230
Alder Drive (Johnson).
Dale Johnson apologized for the water loss at her property;
she explained that she recently had surgery and was away from home.
Evidently there was a leaky toilet in an upstairs rental unit. As soon
as she got the bill, she hired a plumber to locate and repair the leak.
Since that time, BCPUD staff has confirmed that water usage at the property
is back to normal levels. Director McClellan inquired whether the rental
unit was occupied at the time; Dale confirmed that it was.
Director Smith observed that the Board has been presented
with three previous cases of toilet leaks in areas of the household/property
where the owner probably should have known of the leak, but in fact did not
for various reasons. In two of those cases, the Board excused 25% of
the usage over the historic usage for that billing period (based on the prior
three years) and in the third case, the Board excused 50% of the usage over
the historic usage for that billing period due to a hardship issue.
Dale stated that her current health issues have placed her in a financial
bind due to her inability to work, which is definitely a hardship.
Director Smith proposed that the district excuse 50% of the excess water
D. Smith/V. Amoroso all in favor
to reduce the quarterly water bill by an amount equal to 50% of the excess
usage as compared to the historic usage for the same quarter during the past
7. Expanded Water Use Permit Application – 415 Evergreen
Simon Bruce explained that he has submitted an application
to the County of Marin under the Second Unit Amnesty program to legalize
an existing second unit on the property, which does have plumbing.
Discussion ensued about County policy on second units and the district’s
historic approach. Director McClellan noted that very few people have
applied to legalize second units because of the requirement to upgrade septic
systems. In response to questions, Simon said the second unit has been
on the property since prior to 1979, when he bought it. After further
discussion, director McClellan suggested a conditional expanded water use
B. Kimball/D. Smith all in favor to grant
a conditional expanded water use permit, subject to a maximum quarterly usage
equal to the historic usage plus either 50% of such usage or 500 cubic feet
per quarter, whichever is less.
8. Expanded Water Use Permits; Notices of Non-Compliance
- 270 Laurel Road (Vietor) and 145 Hawthorne Road (Lerner); Update
on Outstanding Notices of Non-Compliance – 72 Crescente (Jenkins); 46 Crescente
(Hostetler) and 52 Wharf (Goosherst).
Director Siedman requested that staff report on the outstanding
notices of non-compliance. Staff stated that the Vietor property is
subject to an expanded water use permit with a maximum quarterly allowance
of 2340 cubic feet per quarter (which is equivalent to approximately 194.5
gallons per day). However, the usage was 8,000 cubic feet (or 665 gallons
per day) for the quarter ending August 31, 2008 and 3300 cubic feet (or 274
gallons per day) for the quarter ending November 30, 2008. Since the
end of November, however, the homeowners have used only 109 cubic feet (as
of December 12, 2008), or 81 gallons per day.
Director Amoroso inquired why the maximum quarterly allowance
was lower than average. Mark Hertsgaard (who owns the property, along
with his wife, Francesca Vietor) said that the property previously was owned
by a single person, which likely explains prior low water usage. However,
he noted that the recent high water usage at the property was due to landscaping
irrigation and said they have “cut way back”. He also said they will
install rainwater storage water tanks to take care of irrigation needs, rather
than draw on district water. He apologized for the high water usage
and said he was embarrassed by it; he noted that he did not receive good
advice about garden irrigation. Director McClellan related what he
termed his “moratorium speech” to explain the basis for the district’s expanded
water use permit process and the importance of carefully monitoring and controlling
water use in the district. Staff was directed to continue to monitor
the property to confirm on-going compliance going forward.
Staff reported that the Lerner property is subject to
an expanded water use permit with a maximum quarterly allowance of 2700 cubic
feet, or (224.4 gallons per day). However, the usage was 7700 cubic
feet (or 640 gallons per day) for the quarter ending August 31, 2008 and
3100 cubic feet (or 258 gallons per day) for the quarter ending November
Michael Lerner submitted a letter and said he, too, is
embarrassed about the excess water use at his property. He said he
contacted district staff as soon as he received the non-compliance notice
and implemented staff advice for water conservation notice. He noted
he has the same gardener as the Vietor/Hertsgaards and received the same
poor irrigation advice. Michael emphasized his strong desire to comply
with the terms of his permit and his commitment to working closely with BCPUD
staff to implement additional conservation measures. After further
discussion, staff was directed to continue to monitor the property to confirm
compliance going forward.
Staff reported that the Jenkins property is subject to
an expanded water use permit with a maximum quarterly allowance of 3,400
cubic feet, (or 282.6 gallons per day). However, the usage was 11,500
cubic feet (or 956 gallons per day) for the quarter ending June 30, 2008
and 6100 cubic feet (or 507 gallons per day) for the quarter ending
September 30, 2008. After having issued two prior notices of non-compliance,
the district issued a 60-day notice of termination of water service on December
5, 2008. Since the end of September, however, only 1830 cubic feet
(or 183 gallons per day) of water have been used and staff believes the property
owner now finally has the situation under control. The landscaper
for the property has eliminated almost all use of district water for landscape
irrigation, relying instead on water purchased and delivered to water storage
tanks at the property. After some further discussion, staff was directed
to continue to monitor the property to confirm on-going compliance.
Staff reported that the Hostetler property is subject
to an expanded water use permit with a maximum quarterly allowance of 3,900
cubic feet (or 324 gallons per day). However, the usage was 6900 cubic
feet (or 573 gallons per day) for the quarter ending June 30, 2008 and 7500
cubic feet (or 623 gallons per day) for the quarter ending September 30,
2008. Two notices of non-compliance have been sent to the property
owners. Since the end of September, usage has declined to 3004 cubic
feet (as of December 16, 2008, which is almost the end of the quarter) or
300 gallons per day.
Larry Zoglin explained that he is a renter at the property.
The owner, Winna Hostetler, has been out of the county for work-related reasons
for most of the year and, due to a family medical emergency, her life has
been in upheaval and she did not receive her mail for several months.
When she did receive her mail two months ago, including the notices of non-compliance
from the district, she immediately took action to contact the district and
notify tenants of mandatory conservation measures to be taken at the property.
Larry said he personally had been completely unaware of the expanded water
use permit limitations; now that he is aware of the requirements, he has
implemented personal water conservation habits, as well. Director McClellan
inquired about irrigation at the property; Larry confirmed that landscape
irrigation has been significantly curtailed if not completely stopped at
the property; also, a plumber was hired to assess all fixtures and
make sure there were no leaks. Staff was directed to continue
to monitor the property to confirm on-going compliance.
Staff reported that the Goosherst property is subject
to an expanded water use permit with a maximum quarterly allowance of 3100
cubic feet, (or 258 gallons per day). However, usage at the property
was 6200 cubic feet (or 515 gallons per day) for the quarter ending
June 30, 2008 and 7500 cubic feet (or 623 gallons per day) for the quarter
ending September 30, 2008. Since that time, usage has declined to 3789
cubic feet (as of December 16, 2008) or 377 gallons per day.
Kimberly Goosherst discussed the history of high water usage at the property
and the notifications she received from the district. Upon first being
notified of non-compliance, Kimberly worked with BCPUD staff to identify
possible sources of excess use; after the second notice, she shut down all
landscaping irrigation at the property and water consumption fell significantly,
but not enough to be in compliance. She noted that this is a multi-use
property, with several downtown business tenants, and it was just discovered
that one of those tenants has a toilet leak in the bathroom, which likely
accounts for the remaining excess usage, While she agrees that landscape
irrigation was part of the problem, the leak was also significant.
Staff was directed to continue to monitor the property to confirm compliance
by the end of the next quarter.
Director Kimball thanked all property owners present for attending the meeting
and making their best efforts to comply with the terms of their expanded
water use permits.
9. Request to Transfer Water Meter (pursuant to BCPUD Resolution
152) – 510 Birch Road (Shiels and Nisbet)
Director Siedman expressed condolences to Mary Nisbet
and Tim Shiels, whose house burned down the prior week. Tim Shiels
said they plan to rebuild, but would prefer to do so on the larger lot that
they own across the street – hence, the pending request to transfer the water
meter. After some discussion, director McClellan cited the apparent
health and safety reasons for the transfer request: the traumatic experience
of the fire and implications for their mental health to rebuild on the same
site; he noted no other implications under Resolution 152 since the move
of meter is only ½ of a block. He said a new septic system likely
will be required by the County and that they will need to apply for an expanded
water use permit when they are ready to build. Director Amoroso noted
that the district previously had provided water from an existing meter serving
the Birch property to the property across the street.
J. McClellan/V. Amoroso all in favor
to grant the meter transfer request pursuant to BCPUD Resolution 152.
10. Report on Local Coastal Plan Update Process.
David Kimball reported that a subgroup of the Board-appointed Bolinas Planning
Group (“BPG”) has attended two County-sponsored workshops on the Local Coastal
Plan (“LCP”) update process and is organizing Bolinas input. BCPUD
staff requested and secured a commitment from the County to hold a meeting
on the LCP update process in Bolinas on January 28th and all interested persons
are encouraged to attend County personnel have stated that the
focus of the update is to address new and emerging conditions in Marin’s
coastal zone, improve upon the clarity of the existing LCP, and improve its
ease of use. The county’s timeline is to submit to revised LCP to the
Coastal Commission by July 2011. The County plans to hold two sets
of community workshops and hold hearings on the LCP update before the Board
of Supervisors – all of these are opportunities for public input. In
the near term, the BPG subgroup is focused on the January 28th meeting.
David said that Burr Heneman has been immensely helpful and the group has
a draft issues list in process; the group plans to solicit as much local
input and expertise as possible.
Director Amoroso suggested that parking and public access are issues
that should be addressed in the revised LCP. Director Kimball said
that if there are community issues not presently addressed in the Bolinas
Community Plan that citizens would like to see discussed, these issues should
be brought forward for possible inclusion in the LCP because the update process
for local community plans will not occur for many years. Cela O’Connor
said that the new Countywide Plan is less protective of the environment than
the LCP and in the Coastal Zone, the LCP prevails, so it is important to
maintain and/or enhance these protections.
11. Potential Limitations on Use of Ground Asphalt as Road Base.
Staff reported on the district’s receipt of a copy of a 2007 letter (left
overnight in the district’s drop box) from the Regional Water Quality Control
Board to CalTrans regarding the re-use of ground asphalt. Staff spoke
with an environmental consultant about the letter, who recommended that the
material at Mesa Park be tarped and protected against erosion and that samples
be submitted for testing. The Board concurred that testing of the material
should proceed as soon as possible and discussion ensued about the various
constituents to test for and testing methodology. Andy Blake stated
that he was not informed by CalTrans or the contactor hired to spread material
on Poplar Road of any requirements of the Regional Water Quality Control
Board or any other such agency about the re-use of ground asphalt.
He noted it is in CalTrans’ interest to definitively establish that the material
is appropriate for re-use as road base. Director Smith said that he
has contacted CalTrans and awaits a response. Director Amoroso suggested
that the district limit its testing expenditures to a maximum of $5000 and
there was no objection. Staff requested confirmation that Mesa Park
would take steps to tarp the material at Mesa Park. At the conclusion
of the discussion, director Siedman summarized that Mesa Park will tarp the
material and BCPUD will coordinate and pay for the lab testing and report
back at the next meeting.
12. Bolinas Beach – Advisory Ballot Measure re: Year-Round No Camping
Director Amoroso said that he would like the BCPUD-appointed Beach Committee
to hold a community meeting before any decision is made to place an advisory
measure on the ballot. He feels that the November ballot is the best
time to have a measure on for decision, if it seems appropriate to do so
after the community meeting. He advocates a community meeting first,
because if there is no significant opposition to a year-round camping ordinance,
it may be unnecessary to have an advisory measure. Director Kimball
said she favors the advisory poll because she is not confident that all concerned
necessarily will come to the community meeting; she agrees that a community
meeting should take place, but the advisory poll should, as well. She
further noted that since the Beach Committee essentially has disbanded, the
BCPUD should host the community meeting.
Cela O’Connor circulated a previously-issued Marin County
Counsel letter to the Board to remind them that there is no prescriptive
right for camping and the BCPUD has an obligation to maintain the beach areas
covered by the accepted offers-to-dedicate for passive recreational use,
which does not include camping – she said the BCPUD has the authority to
do this without a County ordinance. Director Siedman said that, as
a practical matter, the only enforcement authority is the County sheriff
and the deputy sheriffs only will enforce ordinances.
B. Kimball/D. Smith all in favor to
place advisory measure on the November ballot concerning a year-round camping
ban on Bolinas Beach, with the wording to be determined by the BCPUD at a
Burr Heneman asked if the ballot would poll district residents
only, or the broader sphere of influence; the Board agreed the broader
area would be polled. Director Kimball said that the deadline for submission
of the ballot measure with the County Registrar is August 7, 2009.
13. Replacement of BCPUD Gate at Brighton Beach.
Director Amoroso said that he requested this item on the agenda because the
gate needs to be replaced. After further discussion, the Board directed
staff to assess the options and make a recommendation for replacement of
14. Renewal of Kaiser Permanente Group Agreement for BCPUD
Employees (2009 Plan Year).
Staff presented the 2009 Kaiser Permanente Group Agreement;
this year, Kaiser is imposing a 9% premium increase to maintain benefits
at the same level (last year, the mandatory premium increase was 24%).
J. McClellan /B. Kimball all in favor
to renew the Kaiser Permanente Group Agreement for BCPUD employees for the
2009 plan year.
15. Call For Nominations – LAFCO Special District Member.
No nominations were forthcoming.
16. Volunteer Committee Reports
-- Alternative Energy: Director Smith reported that SPG Solar is working
to get the district’s monitoring system on-line; this is important because
the district’s rebate money from the state will not start flowing until the
monitoring system is up and running. In the meantime, he personally
is monitoring the output and the arrays are producing extremely well.
-- Bolinas Community Plan Review Committee: Nothing further to report.
-- Bolinas Lagoon Technical Advisory Committee: Director Amoroso
reported that the Marin County Board of Supervisors passed the Locally Preferred
Plan and is now trying to secure funding.
-- Community Paths Group: Director Smith reported that the recent
rains have helped harden the path. In response to a question from director
Amoroso, director Smith said that the district will be reimbursed for its
installation funds when the encroachment permit is closed (which requires
removal of the ADA pad at the intersection of Mesa and Overlook Roads).
-- Downtown Parking and Traffic: Director Amoroso said that the district
should urge that the revised LCP adequately address parking and traffic issues
in downtown Bolinas.
-- Resource Recovery: Director Siedman reported that Mesa Park
will be drilling an exploratory irrigation well near the Resource Recovery
site on the sewer pond property in the hope of finding reclaimed water for
the Mesa Park fields.
-- Terrace Avenue/Alternative Access Road Committee: Letter to Supervisor
Steve Kinsey from the BCPUD and the Bolinas Fire Protection District.
Staff noted that there is a copy of the district’s letter of December 10th
to Supervisor Kinsey confirming the outcome of the meeting the prior month
to discuss solutions for Terrace Avenue at Surfer’s Overlook.
-- West Nile Virus Task Force/West Marin Mosquito Control Coordinating Council:
Director Kimball reported that the West Nile Virus Task Force not met since
August 2008 and will not meet again until June 2009. A report is in
the Board binders detailing West Nile Virus activity in California; there
was virtually no West Nile Virus activity during 2008 in west Marin County.
She noted that the Marin/Sonoma Mosquito & Vector Control District (“MSMVCD”)
has complied diligently with the West Marin agreement. The Coordinating
Council has offered to extend the agreement for five years and the MSMVCD
has informally agreed to do so. A signing ceremony is planned for January
17. Other Business
a. Board Committee Reports
-- Finance: Staff reported that the FY 2007-08 audit report is expected
soon and likely will be on the agenda for the January meeting. The
district’s new bookkeeper also is working on the quarterly reports, which
should be ready at the next meeting.
-- Legal: Nothing to report
-- Mesa Septic, Flood Control and Roads: Director McClellan said that
he has reviewed the proposed statewide septic regulations; director Smith
said that he has done so as well, and is concerned about the separation from
groundwater requirement. Further discussion ensued about additional
provisions of the regulations and it was agreed that the subcommittee should
convene a meeting to organize comments on behalf of the district.
-- Operations: Nothing to report.
-- Park and Recreation: Director Siedman noted again that Mesa Park
will attempt another irrigation well on the sewer pond property for a reclaimed
-- Personnel: Director McClellan said that he will be leaving
again for Mexico and would like another director to serve in his place as
the district’s ACWA/JPIA director. Director Kimball volunteered and
staff was directed to agendize this issue for ratification by the Board at
the January meeting.
-- Sewer: Director Amoroso inquired about reactivating the eucalyptus
containment project at the sewer pond property and staff agreed to develop
b. Minutes of the November 19, 2008 Regular Meeting.
D. Smith/B. Kimball all in favor to approve
the minutes of the November 19, 2008 meeting.
V. Amoroso/D. Smith all in favor
to approve the warrant list.
d. Scheduling of Next Meeting(s)
January 21, 2009 at 7:30 p.m.