VALLEY CENTER MUNICIPAL WATER DISTRICT
Regular Board Meeting
Monday, May 19, 2008
Time: 2:00 P.M.
Place: Board Room
29300 Valley Center Road
Valley Center, CA 92082
The Valley Center Municipal Water District Board of Directors’ meeting was called to order by President Broomell at 2:00 P.M.
Board members present were: Directors Broomell, Polito, Aleshire, Haskell and Stone. Staff members present were: General Manager Arant, General Counsel Cowett, District Engineer Grabbe, Director of Finance Jeffrey, Director of Operations Hoyle, Board Secretary Stetson, IT Manager Rivard, Manager of Accounting Pugh and Construction Inspector Supervisor Dentino. Audience member present was Mrs. Benson.
1. ACWA/JPIA Professional Development Program:
Dan Dentino, Construction Inspector Supervisor, was commended for successfully completing the extensive courses required to obtain the Supervisor Basics Specialty Program certification, which is part of the ACWA/JPIA Professional Development Program and he was presented with a plaque.
2. Mrs. Benson of Paso Robles Road inquired as to the necessity of fluoride being added to the water supply stating she does not feel it is necessary due to its presence in our water supply. She expressed her opposition to medicating the county through the addition of fluoride in the water supply rather than those that elect to increase their intake of fluoride. Mrs. Benson noted that the test levels of the water are above average as indicated on the water quality report for 2007. General Manager Arant responded that fluoride has been added to the District’s water supply from its wholesale supplier, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. State law in effect stipulates that upon 10,000 service connections, fluoridation equipment must be installed if funds are available. Metropolitan Water District installed the fluoridation equipment in conjunction with upgrades to its treatment
plants as it was more economical to complete the project at that time and more cost effective than if many of its individual member agencies were required to install the equipment. Metropolitan Water District has been adding fluoride to the District’s water supply since December 2007 to the optimum fluoride level of 0.6 parts per million which includes the natural fluoride level in the water. The District’s water quality tests show that all state and federal requirements are met.
3. Upon motion by Stone, seconded by Haskell and unanimously carried, the following consent calendar items were approved:
• Audit demand check numbers 118236 through 118313
• Treasurer’s Report and Financial Statement for the period ended March 31, 2008
• Board of Director’s request for reimbursement of expenses and per diem compensation
• Resolution No. 2008-19 establishing the appropriation limit for proceeds from taxes for 2008-09 at $4,627,716
4. Certificate of Final Mitigated Negative Declaration for the Lake Turner Solar Power Project:
A public hearing had been held on April 21st to receive input on the proposed Lake Turner Solar Power Project following notification mailed to property owners within a 300 foot radius of the site, which included a Project Description, publication of the hearing in the newspaper and availability of the Mitigated Negative Declaration (MND) at the Library and the District’s office. No substantive issues were raised about the adequacy or findings of the MND. The Final MND for the project was prepared and staff recommended adoption of Resolution No. 2008-17 certifying the MND for the Lake Turner Solar Power Project and approving the issuance of a formal Notice to Proceed to Solar Power Partners.
Upon motion by Stone, seconded by Haskell and unanimously carried, the following resolution, entitled:
RESOLUTION NO. 2008-17
RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
OF THE VALLEY CENTER MUNICIPAL WATER
DISTRICT FINDING AND CERTIFYING THAT THE
FINAL MITIGATED NEGATIVE DECLARATION
FOR THE LAKE TURNER SOLAR POWER PROJECT
HAS BEEN COMPLETED IN COMPLIANCE WITH
CEQA AND STATE AND LOCAL GUIDELINES
was adopted by the following vote, to wit:
AYES: Directors Broomell, Aleshire, Stone and Haskell
ABSTAIN: Director Polito
5. Nomination for the Local Agency Formation Commission Special Districts Advisory Committee:
The Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) is seeking nominations for a regular member of LAFCO and to fill eight positions on the LAFCO Special Districts Advisory Committee. General Manager Arant’s term as a member of the Special Districts Advisory Committee will expire on June 30, 2008.
Upon motion by Haskell, seconded by Stone and unanimously carried, General Manager Arant was nominated for the Local Agency Formation Commission’s Special Districts Advisory Committee member.
6. Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 2008-09:
The District’s proposed 2008-09 operations, maintenance and capital budget was presented for the Board’s review and consideration of adoption. At the April 7th Board meeting, a review of new programs and capital projects proposed in the 2008-09 budget had been provided. A summary of the budget follows:
• Water operating budget is 16.5% lower than the 2007-08 operating budget
• Water sales are projected at 34,115 acre feet
• Capital projects in the budget total $4,106,500
• No new positions are requested for FY 2008-09. Authorized staffing level is reduced to 80 reflecting the reduction of unfunded (previously authorized but not filled) positions
• Water rates are estimated to increase in 2009 by 9.2% per acre foot for domestic accounts and 11.9% for certified agricultural accounts, which is a pass through of the wholesale rate increases
• Interest earnings rate is estimated at 3.0% for 2008-09 and property tax revenue is budgeted at $2,308,000
• No increases are budgeted for the wastewater charges for connections at the Lower Moosa Canyon Reclamation Plant and the Woods Valley Ranch Wastewater Plant
Staff responded to questions from the Board on the budget, which is summarized below:
The Operating Reserve for 2008-09 is reported at $1,680,822 which is approximately two months’ operations and maintenance budget. The District’s budget policy for the Operating Reserve states that “the District shall endeavor to maintain this reserve at six months operations and maintenance budget” (excluding wholesale water and power purchases). In addition, the District’s Strategic Plan Performance Measurement Standard for the Operating Reserve is “Equal to 6 months operations and maintenance budget”. Director of Finance clarified that the Operating Reserve was near 6 months’ of the operations and maintenance budget but was reduced with the approval to fund $2.1 million for future capital improvements (participation and upsizing of facilities in conjunction with the Lilac Ranch Development’s facility improvements). With this action, the funds were transferred to the Continuing Projects Reserve. In an emergency, capital projects would be critically reviewed to release appropriated capital funds for other purposes. The budget will be amended to reflect that the current budget is at 2 months’ operations and maintenance budget.
The question of property tax revenue budgeted at $2,308,000 considering the state’s fiscal crisis was discussed. The budget states: “At this time we expect to receive our full share of property taxes. If the State of California changes our allocation, it may be necessary to revisit the budget and make adjustments as needed”.
Based on the District’s financial projections and projected capital improvement projects, debt issuance is a possibility in Fiscal Year 2008-09, however, no debt issuance or debt service is included in the proposed budget.
The Budget Message in the budget will be amended to clarify that no expenditure of funds shall be authorized unless sufficient funds have been appropriated by the Board as the Board must authorize any increase in the overall budget. A reallocation of approved funds in the budget may be approved by the General Manager up to $35,000.
The District’s organizational charts included in the budget and in the District’s Administrative Code (Sec. 40.9) will be revised to reflect positions and the reporting responsibility (who reports to who) of the staff positions.
Upon motion by Stone, seconded by Polito and unanimously carried, the following resolution, entitled:
RESOLUTION NO. 2008-18
RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF
VALLEY CENTER MUNICIPAL WATER DISTRICT
ADOPTING THE FINAL OPERATING AND CAPITAL
BUDGET FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 2008-2009 AND
ESTABLISHING CONTROLS ON CHANGES IN
APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE VARIOUS FUNDS
was adopted by the following vote, to wit:
AYES: Directors Broomell, Polito, Aleshire, Stone and Haskell
GENERAL MANAGER’S AGENDA
7. Miscellaneous Information Items:
• Audit by Metropolitan Water District. Staff of Metropolitan Water District will be at the District on May 28th to review the District’s processes for implementing the 30% cutback of Interim Agricultural Water Program participants’ water usage. It is expected that as part of the audit, the representatives from MET will select agricultural accounts to visit the affected properties.
• Strategic Plan. A Strategic Plan for 2008-09 is being developed that will be presented to the Board for consideration in June. The revised Plan will highlight policies and objectives.
• Notice of Expiration of Agreement for Temporary Emergency Water Service to the San Pasqual Band of Indians. A letter has been forwarded to the San Pasqual Band of Indians notifying them of the expiration of the agreement with the District for water supply service and to contact the District to discuss a possible extension. The District supplying surplus imported water to the San Pasqual Reservation was due to the reservation having water rights through Federal legislation; however, the delivery of that water is still in question. Any extension of the water supply agreement between the District and the San Pasqual Band of Indians will stipulate that if there are water supply cutbacks to municipal and industrial customers that there would no longer be surplus water.
GENERAL COUNSEL’S AGENDA
8. Poseidon Resources Desalination Plant
Poseidon Resources has been negotiating the findings that will be adopted by the Coastal Commission for the Carlsbad desalination plant. There has been no action on the lawsuit filed by the Surfrider Foundation challenging the California Coastal Commission’s approval of the Coastal Development Permit for the desalination plant. The Findings for the Carlsbad desalination plant are expected to be approved by the Coastal Commission at its next meeting.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS’ AGENDA
9. ACWA Conference:
Director Aleshire reported that all incumbents were re-elected to the ACWA/JPIA Executive Committee and Wes Bannister was re-elected President.
ACWA/JPIA has a new Employment Practices Hotline which offers member agencies the opportunity to discuss employment practices questions or problems with staff and obtain advice from JPIA’s labor attorneys.
The ACWA/JPIA Supervisors Certification Program is being expanded to offer a wider avenue of training and education and added specialty programs.
Director Aleshire stated he attended the presentation “Top Ten Issues to Know in Managing Water District Investments” at the ACWA Conference. A conclusion from this presentation is that most public agencies have too short of a duration on their investments.
The salinity problem in the Central Valley is a critical water quality and supply concern that will have a major impact on the productivity of the agricultural communities. A Salinity Policy Group has been formed to help determine the best methods to address the salinity problem.
10. Upon motion by Aleshire, seconded by Polito and unanimously carried, the meeting was adjourned at 4:14 p.m.