By Karen Brainard
Ramona Municipal Water District Board of Directors will address redistricting and whether additional options should be developed by an outside firm when it meets on Dec. 27.
Division 2 Director Kit Kesinger had submitted an agenda item on redistricting for the board’s Dec. 13 meeting but it was received too late to be on the agenda.
A redistricting proposal prepared by Shepherd and Staats Inc. of Vista received preliminary board approval, by a 5-0 vote, on Nov. 8.
With the five RMWD divisions split among a population of 33,568, each division was balanced with approximately 6,700 residents. Kesinger, however, expressed concerns about divisions 3 and 5, both of which contain portions of San Diego Country Estates. Kesinger said he would rather see all of Country Estates in one division because of the potential for the Estates to dominate with two board positions.
Kesinger told the board last Tuesday that he would like to consider having Shepherd and Staats produce additional redistricting options.
RMWD General Manager David Barnum cautioned that such work could cost the district more money as it has a limited agreement with Shepherd and Staats.
The board agreed to put the item on the Dec. 27 agenda for discussion.
In other business at the Dec. 13 meeting, the directors denied a request for water forgiveness by George Newman, owner of a rental property on Duraznitos Road.
Newman, who said he ran the water works for a city in Canada for 20 years, questioned the reliability of his water meter.
“I’m very knowledgeable about meters,” he told the board.
Newman was appealing to the board to grant a credit for 852 units of water, totalling $3,944.76 on his water account for estimated water usage from 2000 to 2011.
Newman said this year he had tenants who averaged 300 gallons per day but the amount jumped for the June through August billing period to 3,029 gallons per day. A similar occurrence happened in 2002, he said. After both spikes, the water usage dropped back down, he said.
“I don’t know if you’re aware, faulty...water metering has spawned a whole new business across the United States,” Newman told the board.
Barnum said staff had found a water leak and water was flowing through a hose bib frozen in the “on” position.
Newman acknowledged there was a leak but said it would not contribute a large amount of water.
Barnum said the meter had been tested and appeared to be accurate.
Kesinger told Newman his information was less than ironclad.
“It’s not nailing it down as absolute proof,” he said. ”I’d be happy to work with you outside this meeting to see if you have more convincing evidence.”
The board voted unanimously to deny the appeal and finalize a payment arrangement for a remaining balance of $227.
The board also reviewed its list of ad hoc committees and eliminated the following committees because the topics are no longer applicable: weed abatement, area 2 annexation, solar, Bargar water plant and untreated water rate.
No one from the public spoke at the meeting’s public hearing on the Urban Water Management Plan Update 2010 that is prepared in accordance with state law.