Thursday, May 29, 2014

Isla Vista America

Calhouns Cannons for May 29, 2014

 As harsh as this sounds -- your dead kids don't trump my Constitutional rights."
                                               Joe "The Plumber" Wurzelbacher

That's Joe, "The Plumber."  You remember him?  A few years ago, he was the darling of the right, the poster child of the aggrieved White Guy.  His cri de coeur comes from his open letter to Richard Martinez, whose 20 year-old son was murdered during the recent Isla Vista shooting spree.

 Mr. Martinez also had a cri de coeur of his own.  Hours after his son was gunned down, he cried out, "“Why did Chris die? Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the N.R.A.,” he said. “They talk about gun rights. What about Chris’s right to live? When will this insanity stop? When will enough people say, ‘Stop this madness; we don’t have to live like this?’ Too many have died. We should say to ourselves: not one more.”

And there it was, those perfect bookends:  A grieving father asks why we have to live like this and a reply from America's NRA-fueled Gun Culture:  Guns trump kids. Guns trump sanity. Guns trump everything.

Then, since nobody was willing to deal seriously with Mr. Martinez' key question -- "When will this insanity stop?" the collective public attention veered off  to the shooter's weird obsessions, all spelled out in his loopy "manifesto."  Instead of  America's addiction to guns and gun violence -- which nobody wanted to deal with -- the Twitterverse pivoted onto the psycho-sexual problems of the "Entitled White Male."  And before you could say #YesAllWomen, the site was a-bloom with women bearing witness to another poisonous strain running through American life -- misogyny.     

Did Elliot Roger, with his fancy car and privileged life, feel entitled to all the pretty women?  Did he blame his sad, sick life on all those women who wouldn't give him what he wanted?  Well, in short order the #YesAllWomen site was filled with testimony that Mr. Roger wasn't in the least unusual.  Called  tramps and whores, blamed for every male failure,  groped, insulted, dismissed, demeaned, harassed, assaulted, raped, killed, the  #YesAllWomen's list of daily insults and assaults was long and sad and pervasive. 

And, I have no doubt, for too many men in this culture, that list and litany was completely off their self-awareness radar.  Who, me?  As Jessica Valenti, a columnist with the Guardian US, noted: "We don't view misogyny as an ideology.  We see it as a given for young men."  Which means that as an unquestioned ideology, it continues to fly under our awareness.  It simply is a given in America.  Just like another ideology:  Our relationship with guns. 

So the collective huffing and puffing veered safely off into a related but diversionary topic --  Angry (armed) White Guy As Misogynistic Jerk-wad -- then it was time to move on.  With the final note being set by filmmaker Michael Moore. When the shooting took place, he was asked whether he would write or speak on this latest slaughter.  His reply was quite brief:  No.  He'd said all that needed to be said and now it was up to the American people to decide whether they wanted to live like this.  And unless we did that, we should "rest assured this will all happen again very soon."   

The Isla Vista slaughter took 7 lives, including the shooter.  According to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, "eight children and teenagers are killed each day" in America.   Eight kids.  That's more than one Isla Vista every day.

Joe "The Plumber," would no doubt find that an acceptable tradeoff.  

Sunday, May 25, 2014

A Sunday Morning Sip

Friday, May 23, 2014

Harvey and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Well, yesterday's Regional Water Control Board mini-hearing didn't go too well for staff CAO, Harvey Packard.  Agenda #14 was supposedly about asking the Board to remove the useless, stupid, horrible, pointless, no good CDOs from The Los Osos 45.  And, as the truth of the matter slowly spilled out, it turns out that it was several new Board members who had asked for an update and status review on the matter.  But instead of making that clear in an official, formal, complete notification to all the 45, Harvey was forced to fess up that he didn't do that.  Instead, he just sorta blew the whole thing off and instead casually asked CDO-holder, Bill Moylan, if he (Bill) could contact some of his fellow 45ers and see if they'd like to send in comments. 

It soon became clear that for Harvey, this Board request was just like, Oh, Whatever. And his lackadaisical approach left the Moylans with the clear idea that the whole thing was Harvey's idea.  Even his final staff report made no mention as to the source of this agenda item.  So it was a shock when he came back with his lame, ludicrous reasons for disapproving what clearly appeared to be his own request in order to keep the CDO's in place.

Naturally, once Harvey's muddling of this issue unwound at the hearing, I do not think the Board was amused. But, wait, it got worse.  Supervisor Bruce Gibson showed up to again request that the CDOs be removed and noted that if the Board was worried about compliance, the County has an ordinance in place that mandates --  with both civil and potentially criminal penalties  -- that homeowners hook up when the sewer goes on line.

Then Harvey was asked by a new Board member, whether he was familiar with the ordinance.  No, apparently Harvey had to admit he was unaware of its existence.  Then, to make matters worse, the new Board asked Harvey what other regulatory/legal/procedural methods were available to him (and/or the Board) to ensure compliance.  And CAO Harvey hemmed and hawed and had to admit he wasn't sure, possibly something could be done by the Attorney General, maybe, or he didn't know.  

All of which made clear what/who the problem with the RWQCB has always been:  A Board and staff  too often unprepared, uncaring, sloppy, incompetent, indifferent, heedless of consequences, or in the  words of  former staff member, Matt Thompson, uttered at Roger Brigg' insane Mad Hatter Tea Party Trial and Torquemada's Auto de Fe Extravaganza, that I guess we didn't think things through . . . .

(And, to be fair, a staff  often undertrained, overworked, understaffed,  and a Board burdened with enough technical reading material to digest and rule on that would choke an elephant. And, I need add,  "rule on" complex issues too often outside their area of expertise. Since these same people have the power and ability to ruin lives and injure communities, the disconnect between competence and overburden is a chronic, systemic problem and what can make regulators, without a good system of checks and balances, so dangerous.)      

Well the upshot of all this was that  Dr. Monica Hunter (who is now free to participate fully since the reason for her recusal as a Los Osos resident has been removed), sternly schooled Harvey for how he was to proceed when this issue again comes before the Board in September:  He is to formally, officially notify ALL the CDO recipients with full information notifying them of the hearing. None of this slipshod, whatever.  

So, no, not a good day for Harvey.  BUT, I think it may well have been a very good day for The Los Osos 45.  The new Board members were clearly uneasy about those CDOs, saw no point in them, expressed discomfort about the sheer unfairness of them.  (Former Chairman Young, who deserved to have a paper bag put on his head while this item was being discussed, wisely kept his mouth shut. He's smart enough to know you can't defend the indefensible, and the looney Mad Hatter Trial over which he presided had jumped the shark so far there was no hope of ever recovering.)

And so the consensus of the Board was to try to set up two-step hearings on the same September day.  The first item would be an informational hearing as to exactly what enforcement mechanisms are available to the Board.  (The Board is fearful that if they free the 45 that somehow they'll be helpless to do anything to anybody in the PZ ever again.  It's an example of a Board that still hasn't thought things through.) Then the second agenda item will be an action item: Discussion, public testimony, then a vote on whether or not to stop this nonsense and free The Los Osos 45.

Meantime, the Board will write a MOU to the 45 excusing their August requirement of tank pumping, a burden that pointlessly blows $600+ out of their budgets,  a  burden only The 45, out of the whole community, have to bear.

So, good news?  For the community, maybe.  As Supervisor Gibson noted, in making the case for stopping this insanity, the inherent unfairness  of the continued Board refusal to remove those CDOs is still an impediment to finally bringing the community together.

Indeed.  And that's because the CDOs remain a painful symbolic reminder of the basic injustice meted out to those 45 citizens who were stupidly, unfairly, pointlessly, sadistically hung out to dry. And left there to swing in the wind for years while everyone else in the community went on their merry way.


Monday, May 19, 2014

Aw, Harvey, You're Not Even Trying Any More, Part Duh

Oh, now this thing has really gone off into the Crazy Weeds. On May 10, I posted a blog entry noting that the Regional Water Quality Control Board will be meeting here in SLOTown and item 14 on the agenda is a discussion/information item regarding the rescinding of the pointless CDOs that have been on The Los Osos 45 for years. And how Harvey Packard is weirdly recommending that the Board do nothing, keep the CDOs in place, because -- wait for it -- he thinks that somebody somewhere in the community might?  may? could possibly? refuse to hook up to the sewer once the plant comes on line, even though he offers absolutely NO evidence for that belief, and so he thinks the 45 should continue to be held hostage just in case something like that might happen because he can't think of a single way to deal with such a possibility.  Not a single idea.

Which means that his "reason" for recommending that the Board refuse any and all requests for dumping those ridiculous CDOs was seriously,  jaw-droppingly lame, an embarrassment all 'round.

But, wait, it gets weirder. Seems it was Harvey who thought up the idea of asking the Board to remove those CDOs in the first place.  (See email exchange below)

And with that, this whole thing slid off into the Crazy Weeds.  Consider:  Harvey Packard first asks, out of the blue, that CDO holder Bill Moylan contact the other CDOers and ask them to appeal to the Board to rescind those ridiculous CDOs since he thinks  "this would be a good time" to do that, and Bill replies that contacting CDOers was Harvey's job (since it was his idea in the first place and he, not Bill, had all the contact information), and sure enough, Harvey lines up an agenda item, time carved out of the Board's busy schedule to hear the item, community members who heard about this (including Supervisor Gibson) sent in letters commenting on that agenda item, (including Bev Moylan's detailed letter to the Board, posted on this blog March 19, 2014). 

And then  comes Harvey's recommendation: Harvey asks the Board to deny Harvey's idea. 


So, here's the question:  Is Harvey Packard playing Lucy in a Peanuts cartoon?  You know the bit, Lucy asks Charlie Brown to come kick the football, and Charlie says, Nuh-huh, I don't trust you, and Lucy promises that she'll hold the football steady, so Charlie runs at the ball and Lucy yanks it away so Charlie flies through the air and lands-- Splat! -- on his back and Lucy laughs -- HA-HA-HA-HA!

And here's another question:  Do the Board members know that their staff Chief has been sadistically playing Lucy on the CDOers in this matter?  And wasting their time as well? 

Ah, yes.  Your Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board's staff at work.  A cartoon.

(The emails)
To and 11 More...
May 18 at 11:23 AM
Mr. Packard,

Thank you for your recent correspondence. Please find attached and pasted below my response to the packet you sent. Once again I have copied Mr. Michael Thomas in the hope that, as in the past, he can forward my comments to Water Board members. 

Having ourselves on numerous occasions experienced  involuntary exposure by the CCRWQCB of our personal contact and domicile information over the years, I am especially sensitive to community members who may not wish to have their personal contact information become public record. You will note that I have Bcc’d the few community members for whom we have contact information to protect their privacy.


Beverley De Witt-Moylan

**My attached correspondence is pasted herewith for your convenience:

Dear Mr. Packard,

Completely out of context and utterly spontaneously you suggested, on January 15, 2014, that my husband, William Moylan, rally our CDO cohorts to ask the Water Board to remove the CDO’s. With those words you deliberately implied a clear shift in your approach. We felt encouraged that the CCRWQCB had embarked on a new direction.

It was with considerable consternation that we read your proposal related to Agenda Item 14 for the May 2014 CCRWQCB meeting. Your recommendation directly contradicts what you told my husband to do in January. And so we require clarification.

You can, no doubt, appreciate our current confusion. My husband did not misunderstand you. After your January conversation he mentioned noting that you had specifically used the word, remove - and not rescind - the CDO’s.

When my husband contacted you to say that it was your responsibility, and not his, to ask the Board to remove the CDO’s, you agreed. You did not refute or correct his language. We had no reason to believe you had changed your position on encouraging the Board to remove the CDO’s. (For your convenience those emails appear at the bottom of this message.)

Given that you had unilaterally and unexpectedly raised the issue of CDO removal, your recent Board proposal was disconcerting, In January we truly believed that new Board members and new leadership provided you the opportunity to do the rational, right, and decent thing. Your recent incomprehensible CDO proposal demonstrates that nothing has changed. And so we now wonder at the point of the exercise.

We remain unclear about your motive in approaching my husband in January to suggest he ask the Water Board to remove the CDO’s. We will appreciate your clarification of this point of concern. We look forward to your prompt response.


Beverley De Witt-Moylan
From: william < Subject: Los Osos CDO's
Date: February 10, 2014 8:42:54 PM PST

Dear Mr. Packard,

Recently you spoke to me at the CCRWQCB office suggesting that my wife and I join forces with other CDO families to ask the Water Board “to remove” the Cease and Desist Orders they imposed on us in 2006 and 2007.

 It is my understanding that the original individual enforcement proposal came from CCRWQCB staff. You were on staff at the time of those hearings that resulted in a 100% successful prosecution rate.

After carefully considering your suggestion, I concluded that the party who proposed individual enforcement is the appropriate party to request its removal.  As CCRWQCB Enforcement Coordinator and Advisor to the Board you are in the proper position to ask the Board to remove the individual Cease and Desist Orders that resulted from the prosecution of the “Los Osos 45.”

I request that you submit that proposal as soon as possible.

On Feb 24, 2014, at 9:26 AM, Packard, Harvey@Waterboards wrote:

Mr. Moylan,

I agree that it is my job to make a recommendation to the Water Board about the CDOs, and I plan on doing so in a written report to the board for the May 2014 meeting.  The board will not take any action at the meeting, but could provide direction to staff.

If you or anyone else interested in the situation would like to provide input toward my recommendation, please provide that information to me by March 31.
Harvey Packard Proposal Response

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day Sunday

                                        The Essence of Desire

                                                  I did not
                                have to ask my heart what it wanted,
     because of all the desires I have ever known just one did I cling to
                                       for it was the essence of
                                                 all desire:

                                          to hold beauty in
                                              my soul's

                                                   St. John of the Cross (1542 - 1591)


from Love Poems from God, Translated by Daniel Ladinsky

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Aw, Harvey, You're Not Even Trying Any More

The Regional Water Quality Control Board will be holding hearings May 22 & 23 in SLOTown and Agenda 14 will be consideration of Whatever Shall We Do About The Los Osos 45. Staff chief, Harvey Packard, doesn't even pretend to make sense in justifying his recommendation that the CDOs be kept in place.  He claims (with no evidence) that the sewer might not be built ( Harvey,  Seriously?) and that somebody out there in the community might refuse to hook up to the sewer when it's completed and so he thinks The 45 must be held hostage just in case that should happen because apparently he can't think of a way to deal with that possibility.  Oh, Dude!  Seriously? 

Harvey, your previous Mad Hatter Tea Party "Trial" Board was an embarrassment and this ridiculous recommendation is not helping your new board --  or yourself -- at all. 

Harvey's concluding opus followed by my letter to the Board:  

Current Status
There are currently 33 orders in effect. The orders require hookup when the community system becomes available and the interim actions noted above.
During public comment and staff updates at meetings over the years, the Central Coast Water Board has received requests from order holders and other interested parties that the Central Item No. 14 -3- May 22-23, 2014
Coast Water Board rescind the orders. It is within the Central Coast Water Board’s discretion to do so at a properly noticed public meeting.
Central Coast Water Board enforcement staff recommends leaving the individual enforcement orders in place for the following reasons:
1. The County has not yet completed the community system, and while we are confident that it will, this outcome is not guaranteed.
2. The main requirement of the orders, hooking up to the sewer when it becomes available, cannot yet be complied with. This requirement should stay in place until the system is available.
3. Even when the system is available, there may be dischargers in the prohibition zone who are reluctant or refuse to hook up. Leaving these orders in place maintains a disincentive for order recipients to continue violating the prohibition after construction of the sewer system.

Staff has received numerous comments on this subject. Most encourage the Central Coast Water Board to rescind the orders. Reasons include the County’s progress toward completing the community system, the cost of more frequent septic-tank pumping, the unfairness of only holding a small number of dischargers responsible, and the continued stigma of the orders. The comments are provided with this report.
1. Example Cease and Desist Order
2. Example Cleanup and Abatement Order

My Reply   May 9, 2014

Dear Mr. Packard and RWQCB Board Members: 

Regarding the upcoming CDO hearings for The Los Osos 45, your staff recommendation states you oppose rescinding the CDOs because you believe (with no evidence proffered) that a few of these people may be "reluctant or refuse to hook up" when the sewer is completed.  So you are recommending that the RWQCB declare everyone of the 45 guilty before the fact and so continue to hold every one of them hostage on the basis of that unsupported belief? 

Mr. Packard,  I have an alternate suggestion for your Board.  As then-chairman Young made clear from the dais during the CDO's Mad Hatter Tea Party "trial," since the CDO's were only being used as a coercive part of the Board's illegal electioneering attempt, and since that assessment vote is long over, rescinding the CDOs will help bring to a  close that absolutely embarrassing chapter in your Board's history, and help repair the RWQCB's credibility as it moves forward under new leadership. 

And, once the sewer plant is built and IF you find out there actually are a few people who refuse to hook up, there's a simple solution:  Put a CDO on the homeowners for an action that can be supported with actual evidence, not some kind of before-the-fact "belief." 

Please include a copy of this email to the Board as part of the public comment on this matter.

Thank you.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Water, Water. Yikes!

As a follow up to yesterday's posting on the recent public meeting to see about buying out Golden West Water Company, here's some price differences between  Municipal and privately owned water districts in different states.  On average, privitization increased costs  33%.  And, as was pointed out by the speakers, the real savings comes in projecting out thhe constant "profit" price bump-ups each year over the years.  It does add up to a huge amount taken out of a community as "profit" versus staying in the consumer's pocket and staying in the community.  Figures from: web:  

Muni                        Investor
Owned                       Owned
Utilities                      Utilities  
Alaska $441.84      $458.79 4%
Arizona  $225.00      $329.40 46%
Arkansas  $273.83     $344.68 26%
California  $415.86     $500.42 20%
Connecticut  $300.72      $398.13 32%
Delaware  $256.20      $449.40 75%
Florida  $300.96         $360.02 20%
Illinois  $240.84        $326.88 36%
Indiana  $232.68        $318.81 37%
Iowa  $219.84          $314.16 43%
Kentucky  $316.07       $361.21 14%
Maryland  $232.50       $381.00 64%
Massachusetts  $357.00      $481.00 35%
Maine  $331.31      $362.81 10%
New Hampshire  $411.70      $582.00 41%
New Jersey  $258.00       $318.00 23%
New Mexico  $259.83       $356.34 37%
North Carolina  $204.12      $344.76 69%
Ohio  $444.73            $510.40 15%
Oregon  $271.79        $313.97 16%
Maryland  $289.20      $367.20 27%
Tennessee  $306.00        $381.00 25%
Texas  $329.40        $553.80 68%
Utah  $307.23        $359.05 17%
West Virginia  $375.40      $456.82 22%
Wisconsin  $252.03        $400.55 59%
Wyoming  $261.83       $343.00 31%
Average 33%

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Want Cheaper Water? Don't Call Golden West.

Last night at the Community Center, well over 100 people showed up for an informational meeting on how the community of Felton (CA) and Ojai (CA) wrestled control of their water service from private companies (in the case of Ojai, it was Golden State Water Co.) and STILL ended up saving money -- tons of money, especially when factoring in projected comparative rates over the length of the buy-out loan. [Updated note: With people coming in late, by meeting's end, a good guestimate of attendance was reported to be closer to 200 people.]

Which was surprising since, at first glance, it seemed an impossibility that if your water rates were already gougingly too high that you could pay top dollar for the company and still come out ahead.  Unless, of course, the water company you're buying out ran on the principle of neglecting infrastructure on one end while gouging customers on the other end in order to keep profits rolling in at an investor-pleasing high rate.  With that kind of business model, then, yeah, a buy out deal makes sense.

And, since the PUC runs on the Insane Mad Hatter bureaucratic model -- if water law is Byzantine to the max, the prices set for various water rates truly heads down the rabbit hole.  As some of the citizens of Los Osos have found out, they're paying a whole lot more for their water than their neighbor is.  Literally, their neighbor.  Same water.  Same aquifer.  Different price.  That's the PUC for you.

So 100++ people listened to a handful of very smart, nice speakers (who were key players in their communities' efforts) from Felton and Ojai outlined the hideous, years-long battle they underwent to de-privitize their water -- from careful feasibility studies, to public education, to a nasty election (outspent by Golden State) to tax themselves to pay for the buyout, (both groups won) to now (in the case of Ojai) facing post-election lawsuits from Golden State Water Company which refuses to go gentle into that good night even though a HUGE majority of its customers clearly voted to get them to go away! 

The nice people from Felton and Ojai were  enthusiastic, vowed to help our own Golden West customers in any way they could, and exhorted them to work seriously to make that change.  But I had to wonder if the nice people from Felton and Ojai were aware of how traumatized and exhausted this whole community is from our own 30 years-old Hideous Sewer Wars.  And how, if Golden West's customers who move forward think they'll get anything but lip service from all the CSD Water Customers, they'll be in for a rude shock. While the CSD customers may well sympathize with them, I can't imagine any of them joining in the heavy lift needed to make a buy-out possible.  And if the plans somehow do progress, Golden West customers will have to convince another "publicly owned / municipal" water district to become their provider and that will be . . .?  the CSD. . . ??? . . .  which is already up to its ears in lawsuits and wrangling, facing a small coterie of foes wishing to destroy it altogether, and looking at water rate raises of its own to pay for long-neglected infrastructure repairs.

So, here we sit.  Half our town gouged by their water purveyor while the other half gets "cheaper" water from an entity being stabbed to death.

So, good luck to the good citizens of Golden State Water Company.  I wish them well.  And while all this shakes out, my recommendation is to start retrofitting everything in the house.  Oh, and get out the shovels and get busy xerescaping everything in sight with California natives. It's gonna be a long, long, long, long hot summer, fall, winter, spring, summer . . . .

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Sunday’s Wonder

Grapevine, tendrils 003
It’s eerie how sure the grape tendrils seem to be.  Like they know exactly where they’re going.  Like they have eyes or some kind of sense in the tips of those waggly little fingers that know exactly where they can find a place to grab and hold. When I’m standing near their arabesques I have the eerie feeling they’re aware of my presence, are sizing me up, looking for a knob or hook to grab.  Like if I stand there quietly, I’d soon feel their little green tendril tips tapping on my face or ear or shoulder, looking for purchase.
 And it’s astonishing how strong those delicate green tendrils are, how sharp the tiny hook on the end is.  Gently touch it to any remotely rough surface and see how quickly that hook sticks.  And  how quickly the plant senses purchase, then how fast the tendril coils.  In only a few days that fragile coil has thickened and hardened into a powerful anchor point. 

    And trying to gently uncoil a misplaced hold to move it a bit on the trellis without cutting or breaking the tendril is like prying a hard candy out of the hands of a recalcitrant two year-old.  The stubborn resistance is palpable, nearly human, and I sense the vine murmuring through it’s cascade of leaves, “Nuh-huh, ain’t gonna.”  So I end up wheedling and explaining and pleading while trying to gently untangle the knotted mess, bargaining with the stubborn plant. 

    And there's our bargain; I give them water and food and careful pruning and tell them how beautiful they are as they run amok along the fences with their cascades of perfect green leaves and sky-waving vines.  Since they’re California natives, the “Rogers Red” variety, they only give small, sour, inedible little grapes, but come fall, when darkness comes too early, too early, their last gift to me is to blaze with red glory as their leaves say goodbye to the old year.  It is a blessing and a wonder, a cascade of flaming glory to greet the winter Solstice to come.
 So to their spring, summer and fall beauty and living presence, I can only say, “Thank You and Amen.”

Grapevine, tendrils 004

Saturday, May 03, 2014

Want Water? That'll Cost You.

I received the following email with additional information concerning the public meeting, Tuesday, May 6 at 6:30 pm. at the Community Center.  A grassroots group is exploring the possibility of buying out Golden State Water Co. and making it some sort of publicly-owned, non-profit municipal water company.  If you live in the area that Golden State Water serves, you will have noticed your water bills are higher than the customers being served by the CSD water district. So, if you're interested, you might want to attend the meeting and learn more      

Hello Friends and Neighbors,

Tired of high water rates?  Here is the detail for the speakers at the meeting on Tuesday, May 6th at 6:30.  Five hard working experienced professionals from Ojai and Felton have volunteered to share what their communities have done to take control of their water infrastructure.  This is the first time they have appeared at the same place at the same time so there will be a lot of good information and time for questions.  They are driving in from Felton and Ojai to help us understand the process that they went through.  Their objective is to be helpful to shed light on what our future may hold and how we in Los Osos can make the best choices concerning Golden State Water.  They have spent several years gathering information, going through the process and working with their communities to get people to come together.  We hope for a great turnout on Tuesday at the South Bay Community Center so we can hear what they have to say.  Anyone that can video this meeting please contact me.
Please pass this along to anyone you know that is a Golden State rate payer or is interested in what is happening with water services in Los Osos and surrounding communities.

Have a great weekend,

Denise Robson

  Meeting Agenda May 6, 2014



JIM GRAHAM, STEERING COMMITTEE REPRESENTATIVE:  Felton successfully bought out their private water company, Cal AM, and got lower rates.

What they had to do and the obstacles to buy-out their for profit water company: 10 min, 10 min Q&A.


Retired co-founder and VP marketing of an international electronics engineering and manufacturing company in Carpinteria, past board member of Santa Barbara County Federal Credit Union, Chair of Sustainable Ojai’s Solar Power Group, Former Board member of the Ojai Valley Defense Fund, former secretary of a mutual water company in the Sierra’s, and a community activist.

Introduction: 5 MINUTES

Over 30 years’ experience managing the operations and finances of local water agencies. Managed the operations of the Casitas Municipal Water District (Casitas) as Assistant General Manager and served as the General Manager of the Camrosa Water District in Camarillo for 15 years. Most recently provided budgeting, planning, and rate design consulting services to the Meiners Oaks Water District. Richard wrote the Ojai FLOW feasibility study that was used to gather signatures and later as the model by Casitas.

What Ojai FLOW has done in preparation to buy-out Golden State operations in Ojai: 30 min, 10 min Q&A

Certified Public Accountant and Tax & Business consultant in Ojai and past Treasurer of both the Rotary Club of Ojai West and Rotary Club of Ojai West Foundation, Inc. which is a not for profit organization.

Ojai FLOW Structure and reporting requirements: 10 min. including Q & A.


Local attorney, grew up in Ojai, and experience organizing volunteer groups. Instrumental in establishing Class Action Status for a damage suit against the Golden State Water Company.

Discuss Multi-million dollar Class Action suit against Golden State:  15 Min, 5 min Q & A

      (Funds from donations are to be deposited into the account of Los Osos Flow, a political action committee.  Funds are used
for community reach out, education, research &  printing costs.  All expenses are subject to approval by Los Osos Flow committee members.)