Bolinas Community Public Utility District
A Regular Meeting  Of  The Board  Of  Directors
December 19, 2012     270 Elm Road, Bolinas


1.   Call to Order.

7:35 p.m.

2.   Roll.

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

3.    Manager’s Report.

--    Update on the Terrace Avenue Water Main Relocation Project.

Staff reported that the district received an e-mail earlier this month from the California Department of Public Health (“CDPH”) confirming that the headquarters office has approved the district’s request to amend the loan funding agreement for this project to increase the amount of the loan and extend the time to complete the project.  The formal paperwork is expected to be sent out to the district by the end of the month.  In the meantime, district staff has proceeded to install new meters on Hillside and Marin Way for the four customers whose meters must be relocated in connection with this project. 

-- Update on the Terrace Avenue Bluff Stabilization Project.

Staff has submitted soil boring permit applications for the three borings needed for the next phase of the geotechnical investigation of the bluff at Surfer’s Overlook.  The County of Marin has confirmed that neither planning nor coastal permits are required for the borings.  Staff thanked property owners Bob Ekedahl and Dean Hart for their cooperation in authorizing the beach level borings to be done on their properties.  Staff also thanked Bob Beaumont, director of the Department of Public Works, for waiving the fee for the encroachment permit needed for the boring on Terrace Avenue and Brian Crawford, director of the Community Development Agency, for asking the County Administrator to pay for the soil boring permit application fees. 

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

Staff is working to finalize all contract details; the project is planned for the Spring.

Water consumption in the district was up slightly in the most recent quarter for residents on the back of the Mesa.  Now that the winter rains have started, staff expects consumption to drop back to typical low winter levels.  The winter rains (and consequent rise of the organics in the raw water) have required increased monitoring by staff of the chlorine levels in the district’s treated water – this topic has been hotly debated by staff as the district seeks to keep its chlorine residuals low to deter the formation of disinfection byproducts, yet high enough to maintain the required disinfection residuals in the system.  Staff is planning to purchase new equipment to monitor residual levels at the water storage tanks, as well as a de-chlorinator to use when flushing hydrants near waterways.

The Board reviewed a draft letter to customer Wayne Lazarus approving his request for financial relief due to a leak at the property; the Board’s approval is contingent upon an inspection at the property.  Staff updated the Board on other customer matters, including the location of two meters on the Little Mesa and the attempted repair of a leak on a customer service saddle on Park Avenue.  Unfortunately, the repair was not completely successful, so staff intends to undertake another repair when the weather improves.

On the wastewater side of operations, staff rebuilt one of the treatment pond aerators at a cost of just under $4,000; staff noted that the district likely will need to budget for the replacement of the aerators within the next few years. 

Staff directed the Board’s attention to a letter from the County of Marin’s Department of Public Works about its upcoming road resurfacing and rehabilitation project, which includes the repaving of Wharf Road, Horseshoe Hill Road and Olema-Bolinas Road.  In addition, the County plans to do ADA curb ramp installations, drainage work and other miscellaneous improvements.  Director Smith requested that staff contact the County engineer running the project and inquire about the availability of ground asphalt, subject to the usual pre-testing requirement, as it could save the County a significant amount of money in trucking costs on the project.  He noted there also may be ground asphalt available from the County’s plans to re-do the Agate Beach parking lot with permeable concrete.  Director Kimball agreed, and suggested the district could offer to pay for half of the cost of the testing if that would encourage the County to provide the ground asphalt to the community.

    The Board reviewed other correspondence sent and received since the last regular meeting, including a letter to Piazza Construction with the final retention payment for the Wharf Road Service Saddle Replacement Project and the district’s group termination request to Kaiser Permanente to exit its existing plan in favor of the new plan with ACWA/JPIA.

    Finally, staff presented a draft of an informational brochure about “Fats, Oils and Grease” or “FOG” and how FOG impacts customers on the sewer system, as well as septic system owners.  Staff intends to have a final version ready for the Board’s approval at the January meeting.  Director Smith said that the brochure also should emphasize the importance of regular pumping of septic tanks to ensure the continued good operation of such systems; he offered to draft some language for staff to include in the brochure.

-- Drainage Project Manager’s Report.

    Drainage Project Manager Lewie Likover submitted a written report.

4.    Community Expression.
    Mike Valen said he strongly supports the district’s efforts to inform the community about FOG.  On a separate topic, he said that his property is within the eucalyptus grove on Mesa Road and that PG&E last year had tagged several trees in the right-of-way for removal, but nothing has happened.  Directors urged him to call PG&E to follow-up; in past years, customer follow-up has been necessary to persuade PG&E to undertake projects in Bolinas.

    Director Kimball said she recently worked on bike path median upkeep with several laborers employed by Warren Weber; she said they did fantastic work and, since they are not fully employed with farm work right now due to the winter season, she strongly urged community members in need of garden assistance to consider hiring these laborers through Star Route Farms.

5.    Request for Financial Relief from Quarterly Water Bill pursuant to BCPUD Resolution 553 – 20 Mesa Road, Bolinas (M. Valen).

Director Siedman noted that the request seeks relief for water loss due to an irrigation system leak, which the Board ordinarily would not endorse; however, he said the situation is a bit unusual and asked Mr. Valen to explain his request.  Mr. Valen said that he purchased the property approximately two years ago and it was in significant disrepair; he had no idea that the property even had an irrigation system as it was so overgrown.  He did not know there was a leak in the irrigation system until he received his water bill; he thanked the district for staff’s assistance in turning the water on and off while he and his contractor searched for the valve to shut off the irrigation system.  Mr. Valen said that the valve eventually was located and that he has no intention of using the irrigation system.  Director Siedman said that under the circumstances he is inclined not to treat this request as prohibited under Resolution 553, and the other directors concurred.  Director Smith said that in cases of blind leaks, the Board generally forgives the amount of water lost due to the leak and proposed that the Board do so in this case. 

D. Smith/B. Kimball        four in favor, director Bender absent    to grant financial relief for the full amount of the water loss attributable to the leak, based on the historical average water use for this property during the same billing quarter over the past three years.

6.    Approve Two-Year Extension of Franchise Agreement with North Bay Corporation for Solid Waste, Recycling and Green Waste Services.

B. Kimball/D. Smith        four in favor, director Bender absent    to approve the two-year extension of the franchise agreement with North Bay Corporation for Solid Waste, Recycling and Green Waste Services.

Director Kimball reminded the Board that the two-year extension provides the district and North Bay Corporation with time to negotiate a longer-term agreement, and that the district delegated the initial responsibility for negotiating to its Operations Committee (i.e., directors Smith and Bender).  Director Siedman agreed and stated that North Bay Corporation claims to be losing money under the current contract.

7.    Request for BCPUD Letter to the County of Marin Regarding the Dissolution of the Bolinas Lagoon Technical Advisory Committee (C. O’Connor).

    Director Siedman noted that the Board’s policy is to require that any one requesting a letter from the BCPUD provide an initial draft letter for the Board’s consideration; director Smith agreed and noted that Cela has not done so here, but the paperwork she submitted raises the salient points.  Director Kimball said that per past discussions on this topic, director Amoroso should review Cela’s paperwork with Rudi Ferris and Ralph Camiccia, who currently are members of the Bolinas Advisory Council, and obtain their input before the district agrees to send a letter to the County.  Director Amoroso agreed to do so and report back to the Board.

8.     Amend the BCPUD’s Illness & Injury Prevention Program to include a Heat Illness Prevention Program.

Staff reported that it is a Cal-OSHA requirement for the district to have a Heat Illness Prevention Plan; the draft in the Board binders was developed from a template provided by ACWA/JPIA and modified by staff for the district’s purposes.  Staff noted that in the process of preparing this document, staff realized that the district’s Emergency Response Plan, which is intended as an appendix to the Heat Illness Prevention Plan, is out-of-date and should be updated.  Staff has located a template Emergency Response Plan published by the California Department of Public Health for small water systems, and staff recommended the district modify this template for its purposes and then adopt it as the district’s updated plan.  There was no objection from the Board.  Staff suggested that the Board approve the Heat Illness Prevention Program, subject to further modifications by the district to update the Emergency Response Plan (which is Appendix A to the Heat Illness Prevention Program).  

B. Kimball/V. Amoroso        four in favor, director Bender absent        to approve the Heat Illness Prevention Program, subject to staff subsequent updating of Appendix A, the Emergency Response Plan.

9.    Approve Amendments to Memorandum of Understanding re Compensation and Benefits between the BCPUD Board of Directors and BCPUD Employees (hourly wage and hours adjustments).

Director Siedman observed that the amendments are required as part of the district’s transition to a new health plan for employees.  Director Amoroso inquired whether full benefits are paid for full-time employees only; director Kimball confirmed that is the case – employees must work at least 90% to receive full benefits.  Discussion ensued about the language in paragraph 4 of the Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) and it was agreed the words “who work a minimum of 36 hours per week” should be added to this paragraph.  Further discussion then ensued about the amount of benefits for part-time employees and dependents hired after July 1, 2012; directors Siedman and Kimball said this issue was not directly negotiated with staff and is not addressed in the MOU at this point.  It was agreed that this issue should be taken up with staff during the next MOU negotiation.  Staff then responded to further clarifying questions from director Amoroso regarding the various benefits outlined in the MOU.

B. Kimball/D. Smith        four in favor, director Bender absent        to approve the amendments to the MOU re: Compensation and Benefits between the BCPUD Board of Directors and BCPUD Employees.

10.    Update on Water Supply Augmentation Project.

    Director Smith said that data collection was underway; nothing to report at this time.

11.  Volunteer Committee Reports

-- Alternative Energy:  Nothing to report.

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

-- Community Path Update:  Director Kimball reported that BCPUD staff prepared the upper part of the path median and installed base rock donated by the County; the County then installed reflectors.  BCPUD was reimbursed for its labor and equipment.  Yesterday, director Kimball worked with four laborers from Star Route Farms to weed, remove eucalyptus leaves, and repair damaged sections of the path.  The funds remaining in the account will allow for additional weeding in the spring.

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

-- Resource Recovery:  The Board reviewed the most recent inspection report from the County of Marin.
-- West Marin Mosquito Control Coordinating Council:  Director Kimball reported the Council met on December 3rd with several members of the management team at the Marin/Sonoma Mosquito Vector & Control District and approved the use of a new mineral oil-based larvaecide for the control of mosquitos breeding in septic tanks.  Liza Goldblatt, a member of the Council, attended the Stinson Beach County Water District Board meeting; three new members were recently elected to that Board and one of the new members may begin regularly attending the Council meetings.  In addition, the Council sent out letters encouraging local relators to educate their clients (i.e., owners of rental properties) to monitor their septic systems for mosquito problems and explained how to control such problems with non-toxic means.  Director Kimball noted that over 50% of the properties in Stinson Beach are rental properties with absentee owners. 

12.      Other Business

a.  Board Committee Reports

-- Finance:  The Board received copies of the district’s fiscal year 2011-12 audited financial statements.

-- Legal:  Nothing to report.

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

-- Operations:  Nothing to report.

-- Park and Recreation:  Director Amoroso reported that the Mesa Park parcel tax measure on the November 2012 ballot failed to pass by 4 votes.  The Mesa Park Board is discussing whether to place another parcel tax measure on the June or November 2013 ballot.  Staff reported that Mesa Park evidently has located some documents relating to the Firehouse & Clinic Project (which may include the lift station installation and cost documents) – these documents are needed to complete the grant amendment process.

-- Personnel:  Director Kimball reported that the district is working on the final details of the transition to the new medical plan.

-- Sewer:  Nothing to report.

b. Minutes of the November 28, 2012 Regular Meeting.

    Director Amoroso offered several clarifying revisions to Item 7 of the minutes of the November 28, 2012 regular meeting.

D. Smith/B. Kimball        four in favor, director Bender absent        to approve the minutes of the November 29, 2012 regular meeting, as amended.

c. Warrants

D. Smith/B. Kimball        four in favor, director Bender absent    to approve the warrant list.

d. Scheduling of Next Meeting(s) 

    January 16, 2013 at 7:30 p.m.

13.  Adjournment.

    8:54 p.m.