Call Mr. Shallcross. The Anti-Sewerite Los Osos CSD is Borrowing Money From Themselves To Move The Sewer Project Forward! Stop them! Haven’t They Been Listening To Mr. Shallcross and the RWQCB? We Los Ososians are all anti-sewer!
Yep, getting bizarre out there. Judge Piquet has frozen the district’s assets until an audit can be completed. Fair enough. (The various breach of contract lawsuits will probably turn into some version of Charles Dicken’s Bleak House, and the CSD will remain mired in The Courts of Chancery for generations!) The RWQCB claims they’re vitally interested in getting a sewer project built and so has slapped CDOs on the community, a move that does absolutely nothing to get a sewer project built, but instead drains away resources, time, money, community focus. The CDOs are presently on hold while the RWQCB sorts through a raft of “unintended consequences” deriving from their ill-considered, hasty actions. . A group calling themselves Taxpayers Watch claims, among other things, that the CSD is wasting money on too many legal bills, so it sues the district, thereby – yes, you guessed it -- causing them to spend even more money on legal bills. That same group has spearheaded a Dissolve the CSD movement, implying that if the county takes over Los Osos, everyone will be safe from the furies of the RWQCB’s CDO. (False, they won’t be, according to the RWQCB’s own official statements.) And further implying that the county will simply step in and Poof! Tri-W will magically appear in the giant hole in the ground and Los Osos will once again have a sewer plant in the middle of town and all will be well. All this implication going on, yet there’s no indication from the county that it wants its red-haired step child back, trailing all it’s woes and lawsuits and liabilities. And no indication that county engineering would even sign off on a re-started Tri W and no indication that any new State Revolving Fund Loan could be used since the new rules applying to any new loans require that wastewater treatment plants be “sustainable” and Tri W never was, so who knows how that would play out . . . . in court . . . . again, thereby delaying any treatment plant moving ahead for years. Is this all getting too deja vuish for you?
And now, the Tribune headline, “For sewer funds, Osos looks to itself.” WHAAAAATTTT? Why, what a novel idea. You mean Los Osos can get off the pot, so to speak, borrow money from “its water fund and solid-waste fund” to move ahead with the sewer project update, the amended EIR, the siting search, a Prop 218-type vote, and so forth, then vote to form some type of Septic Management District on its own (to start a variety of discharge mitigations, if nothing else), and do it all by either “using revenue generated from an as-yet-undeveloped community-wide septic tank management plan,” or sell revenue bonds, or get federal funding or -- why, here’s an absolutely novel thought – property owners in the prohibition zone could actually vote to tax themselves a modest amount now to move the sewer project forward while various alphabet soup agencies battle on and everyone else stays mired in the ditch, wrestling lawyers, for years.
Oh, wait, I must have fallen asleep and been dreaming to even suggest that last bit there. I mean, prohibition zone folks stepping up to declare that an utter failure of government and government agencies has clearly taken place, so now they’re gonna go move ahead on their own? Look to themselves for a way forward? All those anti-sewer folk out there in Los Osos that Mr. Shallcross wants to sing Kumbaya?
Now I know I was dreaming.