Vice President Scott Tye, in the absence of President Lawrence Baskin, called the Regular meeting of the Board of Directors of the Stinson Beach County Water District to order on Saturday, April 17, 2010 at 9:30 a.m., at the Stinson Beach County Water District office, located at 3785 Shoreline Highway, Stinson Beach, CA 94970.

Directors present:
Scott Tye, Vice President
Barbara Boucke, Director
Elizabeth Sapanai, Director
Jim Zell, Director

Directors absent:
Lawrence Baskin, President

General Manager present:
Ed Schmidt

Staff present:
Helma Schwendig - Acting Administrative Asst.




Vice President Tye moved to adopt the agenda as set. Director Zell seconded the motion. The agenda was adopted as set.


  1. Consideration/Adoption of a Variance Request for a new septic system at 193 Dipsea Road, Acct.# 8120, Janet Morgan, owner. Director Boucke is a neighbor and recused herself from voting. Director Zell questioned whether or not he also needed to recuse himself as he has a social relationship with Gene Metz, the architect for the project. A social relationship was not deemed improper inasmuch as in a small town such as Stinson Beach there is a good amount of social interaction between individuals. The General Manager briefly explained to the Board the background of the project: adding 300 square feet to an existing 1,600 square foot residence. The existing septic system does not meet current regulations and is an old-style gravity system. Two variances are required: (1) reducing the 5-foot setback to the property line to 3 feet fronting Dipsea Road, and (2) part of the leach field would be located under a new, pervious driveway. Director Sapanai noted that a setback to the road is preferable to a setback against a water course. Director Zell raised the issue of whether driving across a leach field had been previously addressed. Director Sapanai responded that District Engineer Richard Souza said that point did not present a problem. Gene Metz, the architect, expressed his appreciation that District Engineer Souza came to the site. Vice President Tye acknowledged that these types of projects, with minimum and moderate improvements, are helpful to the District's groundwater. Vice President Tye made the motion to approve the variance request and the motion passed 3-0.


  1. Discussion and possible approval of a Billing Rate Increase from Patrick Miyaki, Hanson Bridgett LLP.
    Director Boucke noted that Patrick would like an automatic yearly price increase, perhaps tied to the consumer price index. Director Sapanai stated she has some concerns regarding this approach. Patrick's request for an increase will not be discussed further at this point, but will be brought up again next month.
  2. Discussion and possible direction to staff to amend Resolution No. GB-2009-04 Establishing Policy for Water Use Charge Reductions.
    The Board approved the amended Resolution.
  3. Discussion and possible direction to staff re: the delivery of the new Water Treatment Plant Modules.
    The General Manager explained the important occasion, on early April 12, when the plant's Pall Water Treatment Plant equipment arrived from New York. Director Zell commented that perhaps the employees should be recognized with a plaque. Director Sapanai inquired if there were any comments from neighbors near the plant. The General Manager responded that so far there were no complaints from neighbors about the additional noise.
    The General Manager said he was very proud of the employees. As the pictures reflect, the two main treatment unit boxes were heavily protected with plywood. On Tuesday, the fellows removed the packing, checked for any damage in shipping, and then placed the units into the new building. They did an awesome job under very wet, slippery conditions.
    The project is substantially complete. The huge task of constructing the building and installing the treatment units has been accomplished; now the miscellaneous plumbing and wiring work needs to be done. PG&E has not yet provided us with their specifications. A large amount of time was spent on the building. The units are impressive. The last photograph shows the platform with a 2 inch clearance on each side. Buck Meyer had extenders on the forklift and put a ten-foot pipe underneath. The roll-up door has been installed. Director Boucke suggested giving some of the photos to the field workers.
    The General Manager noted we have been billed approximately $209,000 on the latest Pall invoice. It does not match the payment schedule. The difference is approximately $20,000 and will be researched.


Vice President Tye made the motion to approve the minutes for March 20, 2010. All seconded the motion. The minutes were approved by unanimous vote.


Director Zell questioned the payment to the Malugani Tire Center for $136.20 for purchase of a new battery. The General Manager will research this item. Director Sapanai made the motion to approve the disbursements of March 17 through March 24 and March 31, 2010. Director Boucke seconded the motion. The disbursements were approved by unanimous vote.


The General Manager stated that he wrote letters to the five individuals participating in the existing Lifeline Water Rate Program. One individual brought in her tax return and one individual brought in an application but would not release his tax return information. The General Manager had not yet heard from the other three participants.
Our 30-day notification period for review of our Draft Initial Study for the Steep Ravine well ends Monday, April 19. The Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) has requested a 10-day extension as the GGNRA person is out of town for 10 days. The GGNRA is reviewing a ground water study that was prepared several years ago by Todd Engineering. Our written responses may not require a public hearing from the County. Regardless, in two weeks we will proceed. We have $140,000 in the budget for this project.
The General Manager noted Helma Schwendig has been performing the duties of Administrative Assistant for the past several weeks, is doing a good job, and is very task- oriented. He will begin looking at resumes in the next ten days. Directors Boucke and Zell may assist in the interview process, by joining the General Manager for two or three of the final interviews.
The General Manager reported that several items on the March Task List still needed to be completed. One of these items consisted of sending a notification to the West Marin Citizen that the District acknowledges World Water Day. Vice President Tye recommended that nothing further needed to be done in this regard, and that the District will have future opportunities to weigh in.
Director Boucke reported that a recent issue of the National Geographic magazine explored water. She suggested the District obtain copies for each of the Directors and staff.
Director Boucke has volunteered to research cafeteria plans with other organizations that have cafeteria plans such as UC Berkeley. There is no rush and research needs to be done to explore the benefits of switching over. The General Manager noted that both he and Helma have done some research. He has told Patrick not to do any more work in this regard. Director Sapanai noted that the more knowledge the District possesses regarding cafeteria plans, the lower the attorney fees will be, as the attorneys will have no need to educate the District regarding cafeteria plans.
The General Manager presented a sample of a work shirt from a San Francisco supplier. Director Sapanai noted the shirts should identify the field employee by his name on the shirt. She suggested the field employees wash the shirts, rather than paying for a laundry service to pick up, launder and deliver the shirts weekly to the District Office. Director Sapanai recommended plain, white T-shirts with the employee's name to identify them as being with the District. This would be the most economical.
Director Boucke noted funds have been put aside in the budget for clothing for the field employees. Director Zell stated he is disappointed by some of the field employees' appearances. Director Sapanai responded that the Personnel Committee will work out the details.
Vice President Tye suggested that the Personnel Committee set a policy that employee shirts not be worn by other individuals and that the shirts should be retired when the employee leaves employment with the District. Director Boucke recommended the shirt protocol be part of the Employee Handbook.
The General Manager continued with his Manager's Report. He and Vice President Tye will attend the Easkoot Creek Watershed/Flood Control meeting on April 28. The General Manager also inquired as to the participants going to the May 5 desalination facility tour at Sand City. Directors Sapanai and Zell will attend. Vice President Tye noted the California Coastal Commission will not allow a desalination plant in Marin County. Director Sapanai stated she is skeptical of the whole idea. Director Zell noted that the District lives in fear of salt water intrusion in the District's wells. Could a desalination plant treat the District's well water? Director Sapanai noted that Ventura has salt water intrusion.
The General Manager noted he has not yet received the signed cell tower lease agreement. It could take three more weeks to proceed through the Verizon hierarchy. Verizon has already been to the county seeking a permit. He cannot sign the Initial Study as he does not have a signed lease agreement yet. The County will not proceed until the Initial Study has been signed by the District.
The General Manager noted that his letter to Riley Hurd responded only to his public records request which must be done within ten days. There appears to be confusion regarding the historic groundwater elevations on the undeveloped property next to #2 Calle Del Embarcadero. This will be discussed at Monday's Wastewater Committee Meeting. Director Zell noted that Mr. Hurd also is representing the owners of #12 Marine Way. Director Sapanai noted that parts of the Wastewater Code attached to the letter were in draft form. Director Zell responded that the drafts should be purged.




Judith Elliott dropped off her letter dated April 6, 2010, giving her interpretation of the book "Water, Electricity and Health" by Alan Hall along with a copy of the book. Director Sapanai commented that Ms. Elliott's letter was somewhat unclear and inquired if there is any scientific basis behind the book. The General Manager stated that he has only scanned the book quickly.
The other letter received by the District was dated March 29, 2010 from Ralph McLeran, President of the Marin Special Districts Association, inviting the Board to participate in a meeting on May 5, 2010 at the Community Meeting Room in Kentfield.


Vice President Tye called for a motion to adjourn the meeting. The motion was approved by unanimous vote. The meeting was adjourned to Closed Session at 11:00 a.m. The Board adjourned to Closed Session. Out of Closed Session at 11:15 a.m. By consensus, the Board agreed to change the General Manager's compensation package, and it will be presented to the General Manager in the coming week. Director Zell made the motion to adjourn the meeting. Director Sapanai seconded the motion. The meeting was adjourned at 11:20 a.m.

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