Bolinas Community Public Utility District
A Regular Meeting Of The Board
September 21, 2011 270 Elm Road, Bolinas
1. Call to Order.
Directors Amoroso, Bender, Kimball, Siedman and Smith present; director Siedman
3. Manager’s Report.
-- Update on the Terrace Avenue Bluff Stabilization Project
Staff reported that representatives from the Bolinas Working Group have a
meeting scheduled at the County Civic Center on October 13th to discuss the
Terrace Avenue Bluff Stabilization Project. Drew Kennedy from SAGE
also will attend. The objective of the meeting is to agree on next
steps for the second meeting with Coastal Commission staff and identify the
extent of County’s continued participation, financial or otherwise, in this
On a related topic, BCPUD staff attended a preconstruction site meeting for
the project to repair the Terrace slide at Overlook that was held on September
8th at the Civic Center. The contractor, Maggiora & Ghilotti, will
need access to water for the project and the district has agreed to sell
water at its bulk rate per district policy – fortunately, the district has
sufficient water available this year and this is a project that clearly benefits
the community. District staff also has agreed to assist with communication
efforts to inform the community about the project, contractor work schedule,
etc. In addition, BCPUD and Mesa Park have agreed to allow the County
to use the soccer field at Mesa Park as a temporary spoils storage site.
In exchange, the County has agreed to restore and upgrade the field once
the slide repair project is complete.
-- Update on Terrace Avenue Water Main Relocation Project
Staff reported that the district will prepare bid documents for this project
during the next few months while the repair of the Terrace slide is underway.
When the slide repair is complete and through access is restored on Terrace
Avenue, the district will apply to the County Board of Supervisors to close
Terrace at Surfer’s Overlook so that the water main relocation project can
be installed as quickly and inexpensively as possible.
-- Update on the BCPUD Office Building Accessibility Improvement Project
(see Item 11, below)
This project is now complete and there is an item later
on the agenda for the Board to formally accept the project. Staff and
customers are very appreciative of the remodeled space. Staff moved
back into the offices at the end of August, but there is still a considerable
amount of unpacking and organizing to do.
-- Update on Evergreen Road Improvement Project
The property owners requesting this
project have submitted their financial contribution and staff therefore will
schedule the work to begin as soon as possible. PG&E will come
in first to remove some of the eucalyptus branches closest to their facilities
and BCPUD’s contractors will then come in to mow and remove/trim back trees.
The tentative start date for the work is October 3, 2011.
-- Update on the Bolinas Fire Fuel Reduction Project (BCPUD Sewer Pond Property)
Staff reported tremendous progress has been made on this
project and considerable positive feedback has been received from the community.
The work has been done in steps: first, Conservation Corps North Bay (“CCNB”)
crews remove saplings to about three feet in height and limb up the other
trees while Chuck Oakander’s crew remove dangerous overhanging limbs and
saplings near the power lines. (In addition, Chuck has provided valuable
safety and technical instruction to the CCNB crews, for which the district
is very appreciative.) Next, the CCNB crew chip brush for at least
one day at the end of each work week and cut the downed saplings into manageable
lengths. District staff then put out the word in the community
that firewood is available, subject to signing a liability waiver with the
district. Local folks then come in with their trucks and removed the
available firewood. The final step is the removal of the sapling stumps
and mowing of the area – which, along with the work performed by Chuck Oakander’s
crew – is part of the BCPUD match on this project. As such, this project
is providing job training for the CCNB crew, local employment
for the match portion of the work, firewood for the community and an improved
and healthier grove. Now that the grove has been thinned out, it is
much more apparent just how many dangerous limbs are overhanging the power
lines on Mesa Road. Staff has resumed efforts to persuade PG&E
to come in and trim these trees.
Staff noted that BCPUD is close to exhausting its match funds of $25,000
toward this project, not including staff time, and recommended that the district
send a letter to the Bolinas Fire Protection District (“BFPD”) requesting
that it consider a financial contribution toward the work. Staff noted
that the project is for the express purpose of fire fuel reduction, it is
removing threats to the power lines and road closures, and it is setting
an example for the community to be mindful of vegetation management responsibilities
– all topics within the purview of the BFPD. Staff also requested that
the Board considering approving additional match funds toward the project
to pay for more outside contractor work to keep the project moving along
efficiently. After a brief discussion, director Amoroso suggested that
the Board contribute an additional $5,000 on the condition that the BFPD
agree to contribute the same amount.
V. Amoroso/D. Smith all in favor
to approve an additional match amount of $5,000 to the fire fuel reduction
project on the condition that the BFPD agree to contribute the same amount.
-- Update on the Wastewater Treatment Plant Pump Station and Electrical Upgrade
Nothing to report on this project at the present time.
Staff noted that the district is experiencing “unbalanced loads” of power
at this property which seem to be affecting the motors on the district’s
pumps. PG&E installed a volt meter to determine if the problem
is on the PG&E side of the meter or the district’s, but it was not able
to record any reliable information. Staff will continue to pursue the
On the water side of operations, consumption in the district declined during
July, but moved back up during August on the back of the Mesa. The
leak repair performed by staff at the former water storage tank site on Mesa
Road is holding for now, but a permanent solution is needed to disconnect
the piping from the main to this abandoned site so that a leak does not recur.
Staff hopes to perform this work before the winter rains.
The County Department of Public Works (“DPW”) has advised the district
that it plans to pave Wharf Road in 2012. As a result, the district
will need to move forward with a specific project sooner than planned, which
is the replacement of the service saddles on the water main under Wharf Road.
Several of these saddles have burst apart in recent years – the saddles are
made of steel and were backfilled with beach sand when installed many decades
ago. The resulting corrosion is causing the saddles to fail and they
all need to be replaced before the County’s paving project begins because
the County prohibits new work in its rights-of-way for up to five years following
a new paving project. There are approximately 50 saddles on Wharf Road
and the per saddle replacement cost is likely to be approximately $2,000
– 2,500. Staff also wants to install several gate valves on this section
of the water main so that sections of the main can be isolated when necessary
without the need to turn off the water to all of downtown. Staff has
asked the district’s engineers to prepare technical specifications so that
the district can put the project out to bid and then determine whether it
would be most cost-effective to do the project with an outside contractor
Director Smith inquired whether the County also is planning to repair the
seawall under a portion of Wharf Road prior to the paving job; staff
said the County did not mention such a repair. Director Smith expressed
strong concern about the integrity of the County’s seawall and the implications
for the district’s water and sewer mains if the seawall should fail.
The Board reviewed a Notice of Completion recorded by district staff for
the Horseshoe Hill Water Main Extension Project, as well as Notices of Non-Compliance
sent to customers out of compliance with their expanded water use permits.
On the wastewater side of operations, staff reported that
spray season continues as does mowing in the disposal fields. The Board
also reviewed an e-mail from the Regional Water Quality Control Board inquiring
whether the district would like to keep its recycled wastewater order in
place given that it does not seem likely that the district will construct
a recycled wastewater plant in connection with the Mesa Park irrigation project.
Staff recommended the district respond that it would like to keep the order
in place for now as a lot of time and effort went into creating it and the
district continues to explore possible new water sources; there was
no objection from the Board. Finally, staff reported that the purchasers
of the Whamond property (located adjacent to the district’s wastewater treatment
facility) requested a copy of the West Yost report and the district has provided
it to them.
-- Drainage Project Manager’s Report.
The Board received a written report from Drainage Project
Manager Lewie Likover.
4. Community Expression.
Jennie Pfeiffer, on behalf of the Bolinas Hearsay News, told that the Board
that there appears to be an infestation of wood boring beetles in the Hearsay
office doorframe and that the floor of the office also has some deteriorated
areas which are covered with metal. Staff will investigate and
report back with a recommended course of action.
Matt Lewis requested that the Drainage Project Manager’s reported be posted
on the district’s website. The Board agreed and directed staff to do
5. Request for Financial Relief from Quarterly Water Bill pursuant
to BCPUD Resolution 553 – 4 Park Avenue (Saint Aidan’s Episcopal Mission).
Tom Dibble was present on behalf of the Saint Aidan’s Episcopal Mission and
explained that the mission had a toilet leak which caused the water loss
at issue; he noted that Saint Aiden’s is a small mission with a tiny budget,
so any financial relief at all would be much appreciated. Director
Smith noted that per the district’s financial relief policy, the district
historically has granted 25% or 50% relief in the case of toilet leaks, granting
the higher relief in extenuating circumstances. He noted that such
circumstances are present here because Saint Aidan’s is a community mission
and generally uses a very small amount of water. He proposed that the
district grant relief equivalent to 50% of the amount of water attributable
to the leak.
V. Amoroso/K. Bender all in favor
to grant financial relief equivalent to 50% of the amount of water attributable
to the leak, as determined by the average amount of water used during the
same billing quarter in the prior three years.
6. Offer by Bolinas Beach Preservation LLC (Jeremy Kidson) to
Donate Real Property to the BCPUD.
Director Siedman reported that he received a call from Mr. Kidson inquiring
whether the BCPUD would be interested in taking title to all of the land
he owns in Bolinas. Director Siedman told Mr. Kidson that this is a
Board decision that would need to be agendized for discussion. Mr.
Kidson thereafter called a second time to let the BCPUD know he also was
contacting other potentially interested parties to offer the land.
Director Siedman said that he is not inclined to recommend that the district
accept the property because the County has made clear that this land cannot
be developed so there is no real need for the district to acquire the land
and potential liability therefore. Director Siedman said he believes
that the Marin County Open Space district received the same offer from Mr.
Kidson and rejected it.
Director Smith said that he thinks this offer is worth evaluating; he noted
that there is a California law exempting public agencies from liability for
claims relating to undeveloped property they own under certain circumstances.
He said it may help the community if this land is publicly owned so that
a future private owner does not attempt again to try and develop the property.
John Bryant noted that during Mr. Kidson’s ownership of the property, he
altered it by developing trails and stairs, etc., and that the property has
been under an enforcement action – he warned that the district would “acquire”
any resulting problems created by Mr. Kidson’s attempted development.
Discussion ensued about additional potential liability concerns and staff
was directed to consult with County Counsel or outside counsel regarding
the district’s potential liability if it should accept Mr. Kidson’s offer
of real property. Further discussion on the matter was deferred
to the October meeting.
7. Approve Stockpiling of Asphalt-Concrete Grindings at Mesa
Park parking lot.
Director Siedman stated that Maggiora & Ghilotti previously offered asphalt-concrete
grindings to the community, to be stockpiled at the Mesa Park parking lot,
subject to the execution of an agreement that the district felt was not acceptable
to it as the owner of the parking lot property. Since its initial offer
of the grindings, Maggiora & Ghilotti was awarded the Terrace Avenue
slide repair project and is planning to use the grindings for that project.
However, the district recently was contacted by Team Ghilotti about accepting
grindings to be generated from a project Team Ghilotti was awarded to repave
part of Highway 1. The Board held a special meeting the prior week
and determined that if Team Ghilotti agree to test the grindings to confirm
that the material passes the environmental screening limits established by
the Regional Water Quality Control Board before delivering the material to
Bolinas, the district would be willing to accept delivery of the grindings
at the Mesa Park parking lot. Alternatively, if the material cannot
be tested prior to bringing the grindings to the parking lot, Team Ghilotti
must agree to remove them at its own expense if the grindings do not pass
the screening limits. Staff conveyed this decision to Team Ghilotti
but unfortunately Team Ghilotti feels it cannot comply with this request
due to timing considerations; Team Ghilotti submitted test results
from grindings generated at a different project as an alternative.
As such, there is no action to be taken on this agenda item.
8. Proposed Resolution Establishing Procedures for Suspension
and Reinstatement of Water Service.
Director Smith reported that he revised the proposed procedures for suspension
and reinstatement of water service based on the Board’s discussion at last
month’s regular meeting; the revised proposed procedures are in the Board
binders. Discussion ensued, with questions asked about the distinction
between terms such as “abandonment” and “suspension” and “termination” and
the use of these terms in past resolutions. Director Kimball noted
that the Board books contain a summary table of the resolutions and ordinances
to be consolidated or superseded by the proposed procedures, as well as a
listing of the meters potentially affected by the proposed procedures, which
are very helpful. Director Amoroso said that he has not yet had sufficient
time to study the revised procedures; he noted that the procedures will consolidate
prior resolutions, which seems fine, but he questioned the purpose of the
proposed procedures as only one meter in the district (owned by the Bolinas
Community Land Trust) likely will be affected. Staff recommended that
the final version of the procedures eventually agreed upon by the Board should
be reviewed by legal counsel prior to enactment. Director Siedman said
the topic will be discussed again at next month’s meeting so that the Board
members may have sufficient time to further consider the proposed procedures.
9. Proposed Revisions to Ordinance 30.
This item was deferred to a future Board meeting.
10. Update on Mesa Park Ballfield Irrigation Project.
Staff reported that the revised Initial Study required under the California
Environmental Quality Act for this project has been re-circulated and the
public comment period will close on September 30, 3011. If there are
no further comments, an item will be included on the October meeting agenda
to adopt a Negative Declaration of Environmental Impact for the project.
11. Resolution 605: Accepting Completion of the BCPUD Office
Building Accessibility Improvement Project.
K. Bender/B. Kimball all in favor to
approve Resolution 605.
12. U.S. Department of Transportation Notice re: Air Tour
Management Plan Development at Golden Gate National Recreation Area, San
Francisco Maritime National Historical Park and Point Reyes National Seashore.
Director Smith said that the proposed air tour management plan will allow
thousands of flights per year over the Golden Gate National Recreation Area
(“GGNRA”) and the Point Reyes National Seashore (“PRNS”) which could greatly
impact the park visitors’ experience as well as local residents’ daily lives
in a negative way; he urged that the district submit comments opposing the
plan. Discussion ensued with all directors concurring that the district
should oppose any increase in the number of existing flights based on noise
for people and wildlife, potential interference with emergency medical flights,
the presence of nesting and migrating birds and other species, and the fact
that the purpose of these parks is to preserve wildlife. Director Smith
offered to contact PRBO Conservation Science to find out if they have taken
a position on the plan and director Kimball offered to contact the PRNS.
Staff was directed to draft a letter opposing the plan for all of the reasons
previously stated and submit it no later than the September 28, 2011 comment
deadline, with copies to federal and state representatives, the County Board
of Supervisors, PRNS and GGNRA and to PRBO Conservation Science.
13. Volunteer Committee Reports
-- Alternative Energy: Nothing to report.
-- Bolinas Lagoon Technical Advisory Committee: Director Amoroso
reported that he attended the most recent meeting and it seems like the County
is trying to disband the committee. The committee now must obtain approval
from the Board of Supervisors before an item can be on its agenda and Bill
Carmen, the project manager, has been laid off. He noted that the funds
are in hand for the restoration of Kent Island, but the project is not moving
-- Community Path Update: Director Kimball provided a brief financial
report on the path project and noted that all signage and flags (which had
been installed to deter traffic from driving on the path plantings) have
been removed. She said that the project is in good shape financially;
in addition to the Stinson-Bolinas Community Fund grant of $1,000 and the
BCPUD advance of $5,000, over $5,000 has been raised in volunteer donations
from the community. Approximately $6,500 has been spent on plants and
materials; labor for the path project has all be donated. Director
Kimball says she currently plans to purchase more plants and erosion control
material and will honor her personal commitment to maintain the path for
two years and repay a significant portion of the BCPUD advance by the end
of calendar year 2011. Director Siedman praised director Kimball’s
hard work and on-going dedication to the project which has resulted in an
incredible benefit to the entire community.
-- Downtown Parking & Traffic Committee: Staff reported on
a conversation with the DPW traffic personnel, who said that implementation
of the Bolinas Downtown Parking Plan is not in the department’s work plan.
Staff recommended that the district pursue the matter with Supervisor Kinsey’s
office at this point.
-- Resource Recovery: Discuss Possible Forgiveness of Outstanding Loan
from the BCPUD for Hazardous Tree Removal. Director Siedman reported
a productive discussion with RRP Manager Mike Aitken on the need to have
a lease in place with the district; he also noted that RRP operates on a
very tight budget but that Mike does not feel it is appropriate to request
forgiveness of RRP’s loan from the district because “a deal is a deal”.
Director Siedman recommended that the district nonetheless forgive all or
a portion of this debt because the BCPUD is the landowner of the RRP project
area and arguably should have been financially responsible in the first place
to pay for the hazardous tree removal. Director Siedman noted that
the RRP is a community project with tremendous local benefit and Mike Aitken
donates countless hours of his time toward its success. Director Kimball
agreed, noting that the presence of the RRP helps reduce everyone’s garbage
rates since green waste can be brought there, rather than trucked over the
Director Amoroso suggested that the
district consider reducing the loan by half and extending the payback period
for the remaining amount. Discussion ensued about the RRP’s financial
status and the need for the RRP to be able to operate as a viable independent
entity. Director Kimball suggested that the Board continue the item
to the next meeting and that a current financial report be submitted for
the Board’s consideration. The directors discussed some of the operational
issues at the RRP, such as the marketing of the compost and the lack of ability
to delivery large quantities of compost, but Jennie Pfeiffer urged the directors
not to engage in micro-management of the site. She recommended instead
that a current director attend the RRP meetings so that the district has
regular representation on the RRP committee.
-- West Nile Virus Task Force/West Marin Mosquito Control Coordinating Council:
Nothing to report; director Kimball said that the next meeting of the
coordinating council will be November 7, 2011.
14. Other Business
a. Board Committee Reports
-- Finance: The Board received a capital projects report for the first quarter
of the 2011-2012 fiscal year as well as a bank statement confirming the renewal
of the district’s “CDARs” investments.
-- Legal: Nothing to report.
-- Mesa Septic, Flood Control and Roads: Nothing to report.
-- Operations: Nothing to report
-- Park and Recreation: Director Siedman reported that the Downtown
Park Committee has been responding to concerns expressed by some residents
about the removal of the eucalyptus trees at the top of the hill above the
park, which is a project condition imposed by the County. A meeting
was held to discuss the concerns, as well as to discuss a report by arborist
Ray Moritz about the condition of the trees. A primary concern expressed
by some residents is the visual impact of the proposed tree removal; the
residents expressing those concerns asked the committee to go to their homes
and see for themselves the impact the project will have for them. Last
Saturday the committee and residents met to analyze view impact and most
concerns were dispelled by careful explanations of the tree removal project.
It was ultimately agreed that the tree removal will begin, subject to a follow-up
meeting. In addition, the grading and infrastructure work will soon
begin and portions of the park will be closed for approximately one
year while the project is installed. Residents have also expressed
concern about park visitors potentially walking uphill from the park onto
the Little Mesa, so the hillside will be fenced off.
-- Personnel: Nothing to report.
-- Sewer: Nothing to report.
b. Minutes of the August 17, 2011 Regular Meeting
Directors Amoroso and Smith offered technical revisions and corrections to
the draft minutes of the August 17, 2011 regular meeting.
K. Bender/B. Kimball all in favor to
approve the minutes of the August 17, 2011 regular meeting, as amended.
B. Kimball/D. Smith all in favor to approve
the warrant list.
d. Scheduling of Next Meeting(s)
October 19, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.