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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Put Down That Coffee Cup And Step AWAY From The Blogsite

This morning I received the following email from Noel King, Department Director, Department of Public Works, SLO County. He said:

Hello Ann,I was just eating my lunch and catching up on some recent days' blogpostings. I am always amazed at some of the misinformation that appears in the various blogs, and the unfortunate fact is that if left unchallenged, many of the readers take the statements as fact. I just saw one post on your blog, dated this morning, July 10, from "conspiracy boy" that I felt the need to comment on. The post states "Did I hear correctly that Carollo got the $190 (million)plus contract for the pipeline imported water project? Hmmmmm. How Cozy!"To set the record straight, Carollo Engineers, the firm doing the preliminary engineering for us on the sewer project, has no involvement with the Nacimiento Pipeline project. The design firm is Black and Veatch, Jacobs is the construction management firm, and the construction work, the work referred to in the incorrect post, is split into five separate contracts, each of which will be awarded to the low bidder, by law. The bid openings have not yet occurred. The County Clerk will open three of the sealed bids on July 16, one on July 19 and one on July 26.Carollo is an engineering firm, not a construction company that bids on construction projects. Even if they were, conspiracy boy should change his blog name to "Carnac" if he knows who the low bidders were before the bids were even submitted. Please clarify for your readers that Carollo Engineering is not involved in the Nacimiento Pipeline project, although they are certainly well qualified to do the related engineering work. Thank you.

To which I replied, in part:

PUBLIC SERIVCE WARNING ANNOUNCEMENT: Eating your lunch and possibly sipping coffee while reading the comment section of my blog is dangerous to one's health. Talk about blowing coffee through one's nose. The possibility of choking and falling over and striking one's head on a sharp desk edge is increased. Do not operate heavy machinery while reading that blogsite comment section. & Etc. The blogsite should only be read after ingesting about 1,000 mg of Valium or a quart of Jack Daniels or both. Wear a football helmet. Thank you.

I haven't checked the comment section today -- which is sort of like a perpetual action machine, all wound up and chugging ahead no matter WHAT the posting; reprint a poem about cows and blam! they're back to screeching at one another about sewers --, BUT I hope you posted your comment?

If not, do you want me to post this email in the main blog section?

To which Noel replied, in part:

Thank you for getting back to me, and starting my day with a little humor.Please feel free to post my entire comment. This whole issue is complicated and sensitive enough without specific misinformation being posted, and it would be good to clear this up and try and keep the conversation focused on the real issues. Thanks again.

To which I need to remind readers, again:

All blog comments posted in the comment section need to be taken with about six thousand pounds of salt. Anonymous posters, even with cute nom-de-plumes are still anonymous posters and nothing they post should be taken as gospel or relating to any real-time fact or event happening on earth even.

The wastewater project Website is: http://www.slocounty.ca.gov/PW/LOWWP.htm There’s a link there with Paavo Ogren, Project Director and Noel King, Department Director. You can also link through to the TAC, send them questions, hopefully get some answers.

All the rest posted in the comment section is opinion, speculation, rumor, gossip, wild silliness, hilarious spoofery, raging nuttiness, in short, the blog comment section must be approached as CAVEAT EMPTOR to the max. So, mind the hot coffee as you read. Thank you.

25 comments:

Shark Inlet said...

Ann,

We're all anonymous.

Even the famous "Mike Green" is anonymous. Sure, there is a Mike Green who lives in Los Osos and sure there is a "Mike Green" who posts here and sure, the "Mike Green" who posts here claims to be the Mike Green who lives in Los Osos ... but who really knows that the two are the same?

Yes, some anonymous posters named spectator and churadogs claim to have met someone who called himself Mike Green who also claimed to be the poster "Mike Green", but who can trust Jon Arcune and Ann Calhoun ... if that is who they really are.

The beauty of these sort of discussions is the anonymity. The ideas presented are what one needs to grapple with. Just witness what happens when someone who claims to be "Richard LeGros" posts here ... all sorts of invectives from some who seem to completely ignore the content of his posting. Imagine what would happen if someone posted here claiming to be Al Barrow ... ohmigosh, just thinking about it makes me shudder.


On the other extreme, when folks used to post as "anonymous" it was difficult to keep the various personalities (and some folks might have more than one) straight. Now at least with the blogger names being posted we have the ability to keep our conversations a bit more clear. The every-so-often minor confusion between "mike" and "Mike Green" is nothing compared to trying to keep clear on the difference between "Anon 7:47am" who also posts as "Anon 10:15am" and "Anon 8:33am" who also happens to be "Anon 9:12am" at other times.


And then there's "ron" ... we all know who he is. No one else would post so many links to a new times article by the real Ron Crawford.


So ... I stand corrected. We're not all anonymous ... we know that ron is Ron ... it's the rest of us who are anonymous ... even the famous churadogs ... heck ... how do we even know that "Ann Calhoun" isn't a nom-de-plume, nom-de-guerre or even a nom-de-chien?

*PG-13 said...

Somebody claiming to be Shark Inlet said > Sure, there is a Mike Green who lives in Los Osos and sure there is a "Mike Green" who posts here and sure, the "Mike Green" who posts here claims to be the Mike Green who lives in Los Osos ... but who really knows that the two are the same?

Now that you mention it nobody has ever seen the two of them together at the same time. Isn't that proof enough They must be two different people?

Or maybe that's proof they are one and the same. Go fish!

Mike Green said...

Ahhh! Help! I'm melting melting! Oh what a wicked world, wicked world!

Splutter, Bwahahahahaha!

Thanks everyone, or is that anyone, or whoever the heck it is.

Maybe its all ME! and you are all just a figment of MY imagination.
Can't remember when I laughed so hard!
Gotta go look in a mirror now, ta ta!

Ron said...

Noel wrote:

"... conspiracy boy should change his blog name to "Carnac" if he knows who the low bidders were before the bids were even submitted."

Hey, that's quality smack. I'm impressed.

Ann wrote:

"The wastewater project Website is: http://www.slocounty.ca.gov/PW/LOWWP.htm"

Or, if you recite it (like over the phone or on a radio program):

aych tea tea pea colon forward slash forward slash doubleyew doubleyew doubleyew dot slow county dot see ay dot gee oh vee forward slash pea doubleyew forward slash el oh doubleyew doubleyew pea dot aych tea em

Noel wrote:

"Hello Ann,I was just eating my lunch and catching up on some recent days' blogpostings."

That means he read my takes on Item 19. Noel? Composting toilets and the staff of the RWQCB's remarks in Item 19? Comments? Love to hear 'em...

Anonymous commentor wrote:

"And then there's "ron" ... we all know who he is. No one else would post so many links to a new times article by the real Ron Crawford."

Don't forget all the other annoying links I supply for my blog postings.

Damn, this blog is fun.

4crapkiller said...

Ann:

You are absolutely correct about what you say about the comment section. Unfortunately, in the past, sewer wise, your opinion has had just about the same value because of it's bias, and the commentators have reflected this same value, tone, and intelligence.

Of course with the EXCEPTION of me!

Ron would say with the EXCEPTION of HIM!

Of course, everyone, including YOURSELF MOST OF ALL, would claim EXCEPTION.

All because you and Ron started it:

Tum podem extulit horridulum. (A little Latin lingo for the educated.)

And now it just goes on, and on, and on.

Like Ron says "Damn, this blog is fun." Perhaps he would change his tune if he had to pay the price eventually. Not so much fun then.

*PG-13 said...

> Tum podem extulit horridulum.

Dang. I thought we were talkin fish'n.
Not knowing a lick of Latin this sounds a lot like a new Harry Potter spell. But thanks to the internet I now know what you really said.

Qualem muleirculam!

or maybe, Quisque comoedus est

Mike Green said...

Margaritas ante porcos!

Churadogs said...

Crap sez:"You are absolutely correct about what you say about the comment section. Unfortunately, in the past, sewer wise, your opinion has had just about the same value because of it's bias, and the commentators have reflected this same value, tone, and intelligence.

Of course with the EXCEPTION of me!"

Sorry, crap. No exceptions. But your comment does illustrate the old, snide observation, "So, everyone's out of step but Crap, eh?" Nope, your steps are just like everyone else's. The humor is you are apparently unaware of it.

4crapkiller said...

Tum podem extulit horridulum. (A little Latin lingo for the educated.)

To Ann:

Glad you included yourself. If you wish to include me and make no exceptions, fine.

Ron said...

All of this talk about Noel King reminds me, he's a big fan of SewerWatch.

4CK wrote:

"All because you and Ron started it"

You're welcome.

4crapkiller said...

To PG-13:

Damn, I have worked very hard to be a bimbo and flake, but have had a great deal of difficulty in achieving the goal. There is a lot to be said about "Ignorance is bliss". You must have found bliss.
Bimbos have bliss!

I am just worried about CDOs and the loss of my property.

I am glad I started the Latin bit. If we finally get proficient, we may have learned something of real value from this site!

Have you noticed that Ann is not always correct, but never wrong?

Conspiracy Boy said...

Dear Mr. King,

Thank you for reading my post and responding. I'm flattered.

I find your commentary misleading as you claim my question was. I emphasize that I ASKED A QUESTION, I DID NOT MAKE A STATEMENT. Asking a question in public is a straight-forward way of drawing a response. This is a discussion board, and I thank you for participating.

But true to many things you and the County team have done incorrectly on bahlf of Los Osos, to say the least, your commentary is yet another illustration on how you have twisted my QUESTION to make it seem like a factual STATEMENT -- just so you could go off on your soapbox, which I find rather self-serving and gratuitous.

Yet another reason why you, your hand-picked stacked TAC and Tri-W "free pass" fakery are not be trusted by the community.

When it comes to misinformation, you really have the market cornered.

Yours for The Truth, The Whole Truth and Nothing But The Truth...

Conspiracy Boy

P.S. Ann, save your "800 lb. grain of salt" for some one more appropriate -- like Mr. King or Mr. Ogren. Kissing County ass doesn't become you or any claim you might have to objectivity or The Truth. You have spread enough misinformation on important issues than just about anybody (calling the advisory a vote and the Prop 218 a project selection). Sad all around for Los Osos.

Shark Inlet said...

Conspiracy boy,

Is it true that Al Barrow is an alcoholic who has been in mental institutions as a patient?

Face it, some questions, are by their very nature, more statements than questions.

Speaking of truth ... I would also want to toss out there two other things.

First ... the reason the County is now making all the choices (even if they are not the ones you would want) is that those advocating to stop TriW screwed things up so much that special legislation was needed to allow any project to move forward. The LOCSD wasn't and isn't in the financial position to move forward with even the first steps toward a project.


Second ... will you give us a reason for your hope that Orenco will save us money? Just repeating phrases like over $100M cheaper again and again doesn't actually convince those of us who are naturally suspicious of for-profit-entities who promise to deliver the same services at half the cost. Heck, if it was that easy to cut the costs, why aren't there other firms out there clamoring for the Los Osos sewer project? If Orenco could make a big profit and save us money, why couldn't some other comparable firm?

Conspiracy Boy said...

SharkInlet:

No, I don't know about Al Barrow's past and don't care. (I run when I see him too.)

The TRUTH is:
That the county permitted homes knowing about the illegal discharging (83-13). They created the density problem. They created about 25% more homes in the PZ creating so-called pollution problem. They put liens on homes without legally notifying the homeowner. They never did any septic mgmt. to find out if any septics weren't working. They are holding a 218 in the gray area of that law. They have stated they want gravity and gravity only, but now put on this expensive three-ring circus show to fool the people into voting yes on their 218.

The county should have collected money from the developers to pay towards a sewer when they built those 1,140 homes in the 80's. Hey, they could have put a sewer in many years ago and they didn't.

Now they want to cover up all their mistakes and illegal actions by putting in the mega sewer. Cover it all up -- yep, just like the mob would cover up a dead body.

And as I questioned you earlier, how can you say that we won't end up with a $100,000.00 lien on our home because of the project they select? (or have already selected.)

Noel King picked a TAC team excluding top experts and instead picked a janitor and other regular citizens that favored Tri-W, yet Mr. King says he spoke with them for 20 minutes each (when selecting) and cleared up any bias (all in just 20 minutes, wow! -- that's a good one!) He picks Dan Berman and isn't his organization funded by the RWQCB? There's a conflict of interest all over the TAC.

Your twist is just incredible -- saying the legislation was needed -- oh boy -- it was blackmail by LAFCO -- don't you remember?!? Choice A or B? when they were never going to dissolve the CSD. The county didn't want the debt and the threat (again) was just a scare tactic to get support for the legislation (that was itself based on a lie that all 5,000 septics were polluting.) And now the county admitted to help Mr. Blakeslee with the legislation all along. It's all been a set-up and the stupid people in Los Osos fell for it again. Hey, threats, blackmail, lies -- it all works in Los Osos.

Bottom line is that the county wants the PZ homeowners to pay for the developers to develop!

P.S. I asked a question about Carollo because I heard the rumor. That's not a statement, just FYI.

P.S.S. If you're so concerned about Orenco's figures, why don't you call Charlotte, Florida and talk to the officals in that area to see how the Orenco system worked out for them (physically and financially.)

Shark Inlet said...

Conspiracy Boy ...

Thanks for clearing up your earlier question about Carollo. I hope that after Noel King gave out correct information you immediately went to the individual who told you the rumor and 1) set them straight and 2) asked them to get the right information to everyone they had told the rumor to and 3) ask those folks to make the correction to those they had told.

One of the real problems in Los Osos is that there is a rumor mill of sorts (on both sides, in fact) where far too often more trust is given to a rumor told by a friend than to the facts that are known for sure.

For example, you've told us again and again that we'll save over $100M by going with Orenco. Your suggestion that I call some place in Florida and ask how Orenco worked for them doesn't actually address the issue I directly questioned you about. You made the claim but haven't justified it yet. I'll put it in the category of rumor until it has been proven.


On the other issues you raised ...

I'll address your question about liens on homes when you finally get around to answering my question. I suppose the reason behind your question is my suggestion that a 218 vote gives us a guarantee of a maximum price of a sewer (even if very high) but voting "no" on the 218 is what is really a blank check. Perhaps you could address the question of how you know, as a fact, that our bills will be lower if we vote the County down. Let me toss out there again, the idea that Orenco is scouting for business and has only given us a guesstimate of how much they think it might cost but that when the understand the entire nature of the County project, they won't be able to match the County project with SRF funding by any stretch. Again, it comes down to you ... let us know how they'll do it and I'll buy in.


On the issue of Al Barrow ... I was using him as a foil for my argument. If you're reading this All, my apologies. I don't mean to suggest that you have a drinking or mental problem.


On the issues of the County's culpability and LAFCO ... I agree with you at least 90%. However, neither of these bits of historical perspective make it clear that the County, now that they're burdened with the project, will be doing anything other than their best possible job. If anything, the County has an incentive to choose the cheapest reasonable project that meets all the community needs. To do otherwise opens themselves up to criticism. The problem here is that you're criticizing the County before they've even done anything.

Complaining that they picked Rob Shipe for the TAC is simply silly. Rob got a whole lot of votes for the LOCSD and choosing him was a good move.

On the issue of developers and Los Osos ... a good case could be made that the developers wanted the recall because the TriW sewer plan was going to limit their ability to develop homes. An "out of town" plant that is designed to "meet the needs of a growing community" sounds to me as if some of the "move the sewer" ("no matter how much it costs") people are those who are in favor of development and the transformation of Los Osos into some new sort of Carlsbad.

Mike Green said...

Sharkey Bubbled:

"On the issue of developers and Los Osos ... a good case could be made that the developers wanted the recall because the TriW sewer plan was going to limit their ability to develop homes"

I've hear another theory the developers wanted TriW because it removed a lot of undeveloped land thereby increasing the value of undeveloped land due to scarcity of lots.

I also heard that the moon is made of cheese, and that eating those brown pills you find under bushes will make you smarter.

ps. the pills tasts awful

Sewertoons said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sewertoons said...

Another theory - "Move the Sewer" meant delay a sewer. I see the "Let's find more technologies" as a delay tactic as well. The next, more sustainable, more environmentally friendly answer to the sewer problem is just around the next corner.

I hope the County keeps a steady course and can fend off the barrage coming their way. Delay so far has only upped the price of the inevitable. Voting no on the 218 WILL entail delay and more.

Nice article by Sona Patel this morning - a reminder that the Water Board is not going to let the County slack off in getting this thing done

Ron said...

Shark wrote:

"On the issue of developers and Los Osos ... a good case could be made that the developers wanted the recall because the TriW sewer plan was going to limit their ability to develop homes."

Shark, your comprehension skills are so poor, that I'm almost willing to bet that you are a 17-year-old boy posting from your bedroom in your parent's house.

For example, if you had actually read and comprehended the draft Fine Screening Report, you would have known that Tri-W wasn't going to "limit" squat. Instead of limiting growth, the county was saying that Los Osos still had to grow to full build-out, however to meet full-build-out, a 600-acre ranch known as the Tonnini Ranch, was all of a sudden lumped into the Tri-W project by the TAC so it will actually work, and if you would put down your video game joy stick for five minutes, you could have also read that in the draft FSR, like the rest of us did.

A tip for the future, oh young Shark, I hope you're attending summer school at whatever high school you attend, and one of your classes is reading comprehension. Just trying to help the youth of America.

Sewertoons said...

So ron, it is only with the Tri-W project that growth will go to full build-out, not the other projects?

The suspicious part of the Ripley project for instance, was that you could just keep adding on to it using step. The plant was out of town and you could expand that as well. Tri-W ended at a certain amount that it could take, period. If, with the FS report’s conservative usage for discharge at Broderson (now at 400,000 gallons), other disposal option (Tonnini) was added for spray fields to take more water. The original Tri-W left out that second, full build-out part for a future vote, (to add disposal leach fields on property around town) and I believe I read that first from you ron, as one of your many criticisms of Tri-W.

Ron said...

'toons:

"So ron, it is only with the Tri-W project that growth will go to full build-out, not the other projects?

No. According to the draft FSR, only options that will allow for full build-out are being considered. That's why the TAC, all of a sudden, out of nowhere, was forced to add a 600-acre ranch to the Tri-W project so it would actually work, like the rest of the viable options.

Unbelievable.

And then they have the gall to say in the FSR that Tri-W will continue to be "carried through" the fine screening process because it was shown to be permitable. Yet, that project -- Tri-W with a 600-acre ranch -- was NEVER shown to be permitable.

What a joke.

Still think I'm "nit-picking" at the county's process, 'toons?

"The original Tri-W left out that second, full build-out part for a future vote"

So, why didn't the previous LOCSD boards just build the "second" project first? Tri-W, according to the draft FSR, was completely unneeded.

What a mess.

Sewertoons said...

ron,

Tri-W was permittable without the 600 acres because present team is more conservative than the original engineers on wanting only 400,000 gallons to go to Broderson. The permit was for 800,000 gallons. The second part of the original Tri-W project was to add additional leachfields on CSD property throughout town. I don't think that those fields were to take as much capacity as 800,000 gallons. I don't know but assume that second part would have to go through the Coastal Commission. And I would guess if they said no, that would be the end of growth. Not like the expandable properties that are being looked at outside of town that leave room for future expansion. Suppose the water issue is solved by heavy conservation or some other method. Do you really think that if a plant COULd be expanded to handle more growth and if water was available at some point in the future, growth wouldn't be allowed, no matter what is being said today as a buildout number? Especially if it was an easy add-on as opposed to a whole new plant?

Can you please cite your reference in the Draft FS that said Tri-W was unneeded? Thanks.

Shark Inlet said...

Sewertoons,

You and I both know that Ron's a sloppy thinker once he thinks he's got the right "take" on a situation. That's okay for an opinion writer, but not good for a journalist, engineer, scientist or public planner.

As you know, what matters here is what the County is going to do and what the Coastal Commission is going to do. While Ron says that Steve Monowitz is pissed off, even if that is true, he a professional and he'll evaluate proposed projects appropriately. Furthermore, if he's pissed, he's not pissed with the Los Osos citizens, the RWQCB or the County of SLO ... but with people who have nothing, zero, nada to do with the permitting now. So, to believe Ron that the anger Steve Monowitz will impact the outcome, you've got to believe that Monowitz is a petty and vindictive man who is willing to punish people unrelated to the crime.

We all know that if the County chooses TriW, they'll have to do a CDP amendment (to drop the park component and to give a new SOC) or to apply for a new CDP with a new SOC before TriW can be built.

Sad thing is that Ron doesn't know this even though he's been told several times.

Heck, if Monowitz says a CDP amendment is necessary to drop the park and if the County says they're dropping the park, the County will have to provide an explanation of why they're dropping the park and why, without the park, TriW is still the best site. What's so difficult to figure out? The whole thing, it seems like, if you feel the need to work the park and phrases like, "community values", "bait-n-switchy" and "faulty SOC" into every discussion of the topic.


Oh, you should also know that trying to get Ron to reply to any issue that doesn't allow him to repeat his tiresome refrain is like trying to nail jello to a wall. Don't expect Ron to give you an on-topic response or you'll be disappointed.

Sewertoons said...

Thanks, for the advice shark!

Also, Mr. Monowitz seemed like a rational, thoughtful, calm, balanced and smart individual when I met him.

GREAT jello comment!!! (Reminds me of Ann too!!)

motomom said...

Seems like Dave Congalton has thrown his hat into the sewer ring only to have his hand slapped at least twice since doing so.
Nobody back peddals better than dave C...He learned it from Bubba Clinton (I wonder if Charolette owns a blue dress?)
Anyway, he so lost control of his blog to the fair minded right he had to shut it down only to to reopen it under pressure from all his lefty friends, but this time he "sanitizes" all of the comments to be sure they fit with his socalistic positions.
What an ultramaroon!
Keep up the good work Ann! Love your stuff!