Saturday, February 15, 2014


President Boucke called the Regular meeting of the Board of Directors of the Stinson Beach County Water District to order on Saturday, February 15, 2014, at 9:30 a.m., at the Stinson Beach Community Center located at 30 Belvedere, Stinson Beach, CA 94970.

Directors present:
Barbara Boucke, President
Lawrence Baskin, Vice President
Sandra Cross, Director
Morey Nelsen, Director
Jim Zell, Director

General Manager present:
Ed Schmidt

Staff present:
Rich Souza - District Engineer
Helma Schwendig - Administrative Asst.




The agenda was unanimously adopted as set.


  1. Discussion and possible adoption of an Ordinance Declaring a Water Shortage Emergency and Establishing Regulations and Restrictions for Water Rationing during the Water Shortage Emergency.
    The General Manager summarized his lengthy staff report, copies of which were distributed to the audience. The following were attachments to the report: (1) A draft Water Rationing Ordinance which was the result of numerous committee discussions and which was introduced and discussed by the Board at the January 18, 2014 Board meeting; (2) a Master List of Water Saving Ideas; (3) a list of the District's customer classifications, broken down as to 692 single family residential, 7 multi-family residential, 25 commercial and 3 landscape irrigation/parks [including GGNRA], a total of 727 meters; (4) a list of the Most Frequent Questions from customers and the District's responses; (5) information on rain barrels and various water storage tanks; (6) a copy of Assembly Bill 1750, the Rainwater Capture Act of 2012, which provides guidelines for the installation of rainwater catchment systems; (7) information on water submeters that can be installed in the house; (8) a copy of the District's Drought Alert that was mailed together with the January 2014 water bills; (9) a notification of Free Compost at 25 Olema-Bolinas Road; (10) the Stinson Beach creek flow measurements as of February 3, 2014; and (11) correspondence from several residents.

    The District has been closely monitoring reduced flows in local creeks and low rainfall. In September of 2012, the District issued its Stage 1 Alert for Water Conservation, requesting a voluntary 15% reduction in water consumption. The Water Conservation Stage II Alert issued in April 2013 requested a 50% voluntary reduction in irrigation usage. In May 2013, the District sponsored a training session for landscape professionals, owners and residents, which was instructed by Richard Reasoner.

    As the prolonged drought grew more serious, a water shortage emergency condition prevails, resulting in the January 2014 Drought Alert and imposing mandatory rationing effective February 2014, restricting water use to 110 gallons per day per residence (a 27% reduction from average use) until further notice.

    Although the February 8, 2014 weekend storms totaled over 7", the ground was too hard and too dry to soak up the rainfall. Because the District does not have any reservoirs in which to store water for future use, it is vulnerable in times of drought. The District's water tanks hold only enough water to supply the town for 7 days.

    Members of the audience were invited to speak. Fire Chief Kenny Stevens stressed the need for fire safety and that the District must maintain a reserve of 250,000 - 300,000 gallons for this purpose. The comments that were made by the dozen speakers were duly noted by the Board. The Board appreciates the public's input. The District does not have sufficient revenue to offer low flow toilets or shower heads.

    The Board recognizes the problems of allocating water. Multiple legal units receiving water service from a single meter will each be allocated 110 gallons per day. Multiple units that are not considered by the County to be legal units, could receive an allocation for one unit only. Rental properties, even with a high occupancy count, would also be restricted to 110 gallons per day.

    Vice President Baskin made a motion to adopt Draft Water Rationing Ordinance GB-2014-01, which declares a water shortage emergency and establishes regulations and restrictions for water rationing until the water shortage emergency ends as determined by the Board of Directors; but that the Ordinance be modified to be effective March 1, 2014 and to add thereto that the Board establishes provisions for implementing regulations for individual needs and reinstating water service.

    Director Nelsen seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

    [Note: Ordinance GB-2014-01 was subsequently modified at the Special Board workshop meeting on February 24, 2014 to increase the rationing allotment from 110 gallons per day per residence to 125 gallons per day effective April 1, 2014. Also, the excess usage fine will be comprised of one $400 fine to be charged one month after the warning notice if the usage has not decreased to 125 gallons per day.]
  2. Discussion and possible establishment of a Commercial Water Rationing Program for the Stinson Beach County Water District.
    The General Manager noted in his staff report that there are 25 commercial accounts reported within the Commercial/Institutional Account classification on the yearly Statistical Report to the Department of Water Resources. Commercial usage is about 3,000,000 gallons per year, which is approximately 7% of the District's total water sales. Water rationing for commercial accounts could be based on several criteria such as:

    (A) Fixture Unit Count. The larger the business, the more fixtures installed therein, the more the ration allotment would be. This would entail modification to the District's billing software, as well as temporary help for business inspection and follow up.
    (B) Base Line. This would allow for seasonal variations in water demand. Establish a Base Line of water usage for each business for each month over the last 12 months. Each business is then given a spreadsheet with their ration amount for each month. For example, if their usage was 400 cubic feet in January and they are given a 25% reduction, their ration amount for January would be 300 cubic feet. Their February ration would be more or less, depending on the amount they used last February. Billing software modification would also be needed.
    (C) Modified Base Line. This method takes the actual total water usage for the previous 12 months, divided by 12 and then attaches a % water reduction.

    A Board member suggested that commercial accounts be subject to a target reduction of 25%. The Board noted that it is beyond the Board's capability to perform a water audit of commercial accounts.

    The Board directed staff to prepare a list of issues for discussion purposes in establishing additional rules and regulations for the implementation and enforcement of the Water Rationing Ordinance (including commercial account rationing) at the Special workshop Board meeting to be held on Monday, February 24, 2014, at 8:30 a.m.

    [Note: At the Special Board meeting on February 24, 2014, the Board directed the General Manager to contact commercial users to request them to voluntarily reduce their water usage by 20%.]

    Another Special Board meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 12, 2014, at 8:30 a.m. The Water Operations Committee meeting previously scheduled for Thursday, March 13, will be cancelled.
  3. Discussion and possible direction to staff regarding a District-wide election on June 3, 2014 to seek approval from the voters to increase the District's Property Tax Appropriations Limit.
    Director Cross moved to approve Resolution No. GB-2014-02 calling an election to submit to the voters the question of establishing the District's appropriations limit under Article XIIIB of the California Constitution as $1,425,910 for fiscal year 2014-2015 and to use that amount to determine the limits for fiscal years 2015-2018. President Boucke seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.


  1. Presentation by Steve Devine, Program Manager, County of Marin, Waste Management Division re: Zero Waste Marin.
    Mr. Devine will make his presentation at next month's Board meeting.
  2. Review of the District's Basic Financial Statements and the Memorandum on Internal Controls as at June 30, 2013.
    Director Nelsen moved to approve the District's Basic Financial Statements and the Memorandum on Internal Controls. Vice President Baskin seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
  3. Review proposed changes to the District's Title IV "Onsite Wastewater Management Code" and direct staff to forward the modifications to the Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) for final approval.
    Rich Souza stated that the current 50 foot setback requirement from a well to a septic system will be changed in Title IV to match the state's requirement of 100 feet. The Board directed staff to send the proposed changes to Title IV to the Regional Water Quality Control Board for their approval.


Vice President Baskin moved to approve the Minutes of January 18. Director Nelsen seconded the motion. The minutes were approved unanimously.


Vice President Baskin moved to approve the disbursements of January 23, 2014. Director Nelsen seconded the motion. The disbursements were approved unanimously.


The General Manager discussed his monthly report. A flood survey was sent to all residents by Chris Choo, Marin County, for the purpose of receiving feedback on proposed flood control projects and their projected costs.

The General Manager thanked Toby Bisson and the rest of the staff for their assistance in answering a multitude of customer questions relating to water rationing, doing leak checks, taking sand out of meter boxes, etc.

CalPERS has granted a two week extension to respond to their four audit findings.




The Board reviewed the correspondence.


The motion to adjourn the meeting was approved by unanimous vote. The meeting was adjourned at 12:35 p.m.

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