SATURDAY, MAY 15, 2010


President Lawrence A. Baskin called the Regular meeting of the Board of Directors of the Stinson Beach County Water District to order on Saturday, May 15, 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:
Lawrence Baskin, President
Scott Tye, Vice President
Barbara Boucke, Director
Elizabeth Sapanai, Director
Jim Zell, Director

General Manager present:
Ed Schmidt

Staff present:
Helma Schwendig - Acting Administrative Asst.




Director Sapanai moved to adopt the agenda as set. Director Boucke seconded the motion. The agenda was adopted as set.


  1. Discussion and possible approval of a Billing Rate Increase from Patrick Miyaki, Hanson Bridgett LLP.
    Patrick Miyaki stated he appreciates the opportunity to serve the District as legal counsel. His firm understands the concern about billing rates incurred by small, public agencies such as ours. He is striving to keep his rates as low as possible. He would like to receive feedback. What can he and the other lawyers in his firm improve upon? He also noted that the General Manager and the Board make good use of their legal resources and have a very good sense when to call him for legal advice.
    Director Sapanai noted that the District receives excellent representation from Patrick. Director Boucke stated that she appreciates Patrick's guidance and his thoroughness. Director Tye noted that the transition from the District's previous counsel, Ray McDevitt, was very smooth. President Baskin agrees that Patrick's billing request increase from $250 per hour to $270 is very reasonable. The Board unanimously approved to increase Patrick's billing rate from $250 to $270 per hour effective July 1, 2010. However, this approval is not an automatic increase, nor is it construed to be a cost of living increase, and future increases need to be heard and approved by the Board at 12 - 16 month intervals.
  2. Discussion and possible direction to staff to consider an addition to our "InHance" software program that would allow customers to go on-line, view their accounts and make credit card or electronic check payments.
    President Baskin stated electronic bill paying is a question of convenience for the District's customers. The first step is to find out how many customers are really interested and willing to pay for this service by including a separate survey form with the monthly water bill. He recommends modifying the language of the proposed insert by also inviting our customers to call or e-mail Jackie with their preference. Director Tye noted the number of customers requesting this service must be substantial, at least in the range of 100 - 200 customers, to make the service worthwhile. He suggested the survey language be bolded and be of a different color sheet so there is less chance of the customer discarding the insert without reading it.
    Director Sapanai is concerned about the 3% fee charged by the credit card processor. There is also a $1 transaction fee. Both of these charges would be passed on to our customers. The District, however, would pay the initial $3,350 set up fee for the software and the annual maintenance fee of several hundred dollars.
    Director Sapanai noted that PG&E does not charge her a fee for electronically paying her PG&E bill. Director Boucke suggested that more research needs to be done before sending out the survey to ascertain if there is another way the bill paying can be done electronically . The Board decided that the Finance Committee will work on the final wording of the insert after the actual cost has been determined.
  3. Discussion and possible direction to staff re: the 2009 Water Quality/Consumer Confidence Report.
    Directors Sapanai and Tye noted the report was well done. Director Boucke suggested the District send a copy of the report with a cover letter from the General Manager to the Seadrift Association for their own board meeting in July. The Directors made various suggestions to make certain aspects of the report more prominent in order to raise consumer awareness as to their importance. Suggested were using larger print and bolding the last two paragraphs of the report titled: "Shock Loading Onsite Septic Systems" and "Plants Are Harmful to Onsite Septic Systems." Director Tye expressed his view that the sentence "Shock Loading is a violation of your Discharge Permit" should be underlined as it is at the end of the report and may get lost to the reader in the minutia. The Directors agreed that the three paragraphs consisting of mosquito abatement, shock loading septics and plants in the septic area were all of great importance. The Directors, therefore, decided to place a bolded and underlined heading in large type: "IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR DISTRICT WATER CUSTOMERS" before the paragraph on the fifth page, "District Mosquito Abatement Policy."
  4. Stinson Beach County Water District Resolution No. G.B. 2010-02, Proposing an Election be held in its jurisdiction and requesting the Board of Supervisors to consolidate with any other election conducted on said date, and requesting election services by the Registrar of Voters.
    Director Sapanai moved to approve Resolution No. G.B. 2010-02 [subsequently renumbered as G.B. 2010-03.] Director Boucke seconded the motion. None opposed and the Board approved the Resolution unanimously.
  5. Stinson Beach County Water District Resolution No. G.B. 2010-03, Whereby the Board of Directors sets forth and establishes a policy relating to the Candidates Statement of Qualifications.
    Director Sapanai moved to approve Resolution No. G.B. 2010-03 [subsequently renumbered as G.B. 2010-04.] Director Boucke seconded the motion. None opposed and the Board approved the Resolution unanimously.
  6. Discussion and possible direction to staff regarding Government Accounting Standards Board (GASBY) Statement 45.
    The General Manager discussed Statement 45, "Accounting and Financial Reporting by Employers for Postemployment Benefits Other than Pensions." This relates to the District's retired employees' monthly medical benefits. The Finance Committee had requested Dennis Daugherty to revise the actuarial tables based on employees retiring at 60 years of age and a 6% discount rate, rather than using age 50 and a 4% rate. The District's liability is less if the actuarial computation is based on employees retiring at 60 years of age rather than age 50.
    There are several options: pay as you go or pre-fund into a trust set up by CalPERS. Director Boucke stated that the District should be as conservative as possible. President Baskin noted that the District has a small retirement group and the employees work longer. He believes age 60 is a more realistic expectation than age 50. Director Boucke noted our current economy does not see a 6% return on anything. The District will set up a fourth (Gasby) Reserve Account with approximately $18,000.
    Beginning this fiscal year, this future liability has to show up on our annual balance sheets. Dennis is to rerun the final numbers. The Directors compromised. Director Tye moved to establish our Gasby compliance program by using an age 60 retirement age and a 5% investment return. Director Zell seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. The General Manager noted that the Marin Grand Jury is interested in seeing our data.
  7. Discussion and possible direction to staff re: SBCWD Operations and Maintenance Budget (Draft) for Fiscal Year 2010-2011.
    The General Manager stated the draft budget has previously been discussed by the Finance Committee. Both water revenue and wastewater revenue will increase due to coming rate increases in October. Also, new construction activity has picked up. For example, Bruce Guile has a permit to build an $8M main house on the old McKnew property in the Highlands area. Our electricity expense will increase when the new plant begins operating next year. The General Manager stated there will be some adjustments to the budget that will be brought back for Board approval next month.
  8. Discussion and possible direction to staff re: District's Planned Capital Improvements Projects (CIP).
    The General Manager discussed the Planned Capital Improvements Projects chart. The prior figures are handwritten above the current figures. The District has spent $1.3M on the new water treatment plant and is right on target. There is about $1.5M in the Local Agency Investment Fund (LAIF) account at the present time. President Baskin expressed his approval.
  9. Discussion and possible direction to staff to approve the specifications (Project Manual) and solicit bids, for the new well at the District's Steep Ravine Tank Site.
    The General Manager stated that the District has not yet received the Coastal Development Permit (CDP) for the new well at the Steep Ravine Tank site. Once we have received the CDP, we will advertise for bids. President Baskin stated that it is the consensus of the Board to proceed.
  10. Discussion and possible approval of a Notice of Determination and Final Negative Declaration for the new well at the Steep Ravine Tank Site.
    The Resolution Approving of a Notice of Determination and Final Negative Declaration for a Proposed New Potable Water Well at the District's Steep Ravine Tank Site [subsequently numbered G.B. 2010-06] was passed unanimously by the Board.


President Baskin stated the April 17, 2010 minutes were very informative. Director Sapanai noted that on line 30, page 4, the words "attached to the letter" should be inserted so that the sentence now reads: "Director Sapanai noted that parts of the Wastewater Code attached to the letter were in draft form." The minutes were approved by unanimous vote, with President Baskin abstaining, as he was absent at the April 17 meeting.


The disbursements for April 14 and April 29, 2010 were approved by unanimous vote. The Board reviewed the March Financial Reports and noted the good cover letter prepared by Janice.


The General Manager discussed his monthly report. He stated he has not heard anything regarding the septic design for the undeveloped property at Calle del Embarcadero nor the incomplete septic system design for the property at #12 Marine Way. No. 12 Marine Way needs to be kept on the front burner. It is not clear when the design should be completed. The Sutton drainage plan will be brought to the Board at the June 19 meeting without a Wastewater hearing. Director Boucke noted that both Toby's and Chris' monthly reports were good.
Directors Sapanai and Zell noted their May 5 tour of the Brackish Desalination Facility at Sand City was very interesting. This plant serves about 400 residents and a number of large resorts.




The District joined the Marin Municipal Water District in declaring Water Supply Appreciation Week May 10 - 18, 2010 in Marin County and unanimously approved the Resolution Proclaiming Water Supply Appreciation Week May 10 - 18, 2010 [subsequently numbered G.B. 2010-05.]


The motion to adjourn the meeting was approved by unanimous vote. The meeting was adjourned to Closed Session at 10:57 a.m. The Board adjourned to Closed Session. Out of closed session 11:37 a.m. and the meeting was adjourned.

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