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Energy & Resource Management Committee

Energy & Resource Management Committee

December 16, 1998

The meeting was called to order by Chair McCarthy at 7:34 a.m.
Hardwick, Hoover, Lauper, McCarthy, Mathews, Pugh, Roberts, and Widrig

Burtner, DiGerlando, and Schmidt

Associate Planner Viado, Water Systems Engineer John Carlson, Intern Marilyn Mullins, and Recorder Cyprien

Minutes of November 18, 1998 were APPROVED with the amendment of Member Hardwick showing an excused absence and other typos as corrected.

Chair McCarthy introduced John Carlson, our Water System Engineer.


Summary of Water Production

Mr. Carlson distributed a Water Production chart for the 1998/99 Fiscal Year. The spreadsheet summarized the first four months of the fiscal year. After a brief explanation of the chart, he explained that basin water was the main issue. The City is allowed to pump 75% of our water demands. By pumping water, the city is able to save one-third the cost of purchasing water from the Metropolitan Water District.

Member Mathews asked what occurs if the city pumps more than it is entitled to. Mr. Carlson responded that the BEA (Basin Equity Assessment) monitors it and charges a penalty cost equivalent to supplementary water. The cost is equivalent to buying MWD water. If the City doesn't pump its allotted 75%, it will affect the overall cost of the city's water. To ensure that we reach the 75% maximum, we may occasionally go over by a few percentage points and pay the MWD cost.

Member Hoover asked the difference between production and sales. Mr. Carlson responded that the city averages an approximate 4.4% water loss. Water loss occurs due to water leakage, faulty water meters, and necessary hydrant flushing. The industry standard of water loss is 10% and Fullerton has a goal of only 6%. Mr. Carlson also added that water sales are hard to predict.

Member Hardwick asked about the status of the reservoir at Hillcrest Park. Mr. Carlson replied that six proposals were received from the feasibility study. On January 19, 1999, City Council will tentatively approve "Phase 1" and allow the reservoir to be drained in order to fully study the reservoir. The engineer will then do extensive testing and have a report ready by the end of 1999. A recommendation will be made to either rebuild or rehabilitate the reservoir. By the fall of 2001, construction will begin.

Following additional discussion, Mr. Carlson advised that toward the end of the study he would try to arrange to have the consultant address the Committee with any questions or concerns prior to the City Council meeting.

Mr. Carlson then quickly updated all members on the groundwater recharge system located in Fountain Valley. He advised that the draft EIR (Environmental Impact Report) report is now available and the program seems to be moving forward.

Overview of Orange County Water District Master Plan

The Orange County Water District main objective is to maintain its ground water basin and guarantee an adequate water supply. For the cities involved, this is a great savings. Outside cities spoke about the need for annexation. Annexation became an issue approximately two years ago when they started looking at what cities were members of the Orange County Water District. One principal concern with the basin involved those cities along the coast. In summertime when water demands are high, so much water is pumped that the water table is lowered by 50 to 60 feet. Additional questions and concerns were addressed and the Board of the Orange County Water District suggested that a Master Plan study take place. The Master Plan is now in draft form. No conclusion has been made regarding annexation, however the report shows that water demands can be met. Water rates will increase in order to meet water demands. Member Mathews asked how 1/3 more water be obtained to handle additional cities who become members? Mr. Carlson explained that the following three things would have to take place:
  • Increase the ability for the basin to recharge itself
  • Expand Water Factory 21 with additional wells
  • Deep drill additional water wells in the area of Anaheim and Westminster
The projection for the increase in rates for Fullerton's general water rate would be roughly 2% per year for approximately 8 years. By the years of 2008-2015, it would increase 3-5% and by 2020, it would level out. Member Mathews asked if the cities considering the annexation will pay similar costs, and Mr. Carlson replied affirmatively. Mr. Mathews then asked why Fullerton should pay an increase along with the annexed cities. Mr. Carlson replied that the new cities will have to pay an additional buy-in-fee, and this should greatly offset any predicted replenishment fee.

Chair McCarthy asked: 1) the make-up of the structure of the Board; 2) how are decisions made; 3) who is on the OCWD board; 4) what is the ERMC's role in approving a plan; and 5) do we have a responsibility or are they simply floating it out among their member agencies for review. Mr. Carlson answered that the City does have a representative but they are floating it out among their members and the board makes the decision. Fullerton does have a representative on the Board. No formal adoption takes place.

In closing, Mr. Carlson offered his help in arranging a tour to Water Factory 21 on February 17th, as well as arranging an all-day tour to the Eastside Reservoir, possibly in March or April. Mr. Carlson distributed a pamphlet that outlined MWD's Strategic Planning process.

Green Waste Pilot Program

Associate Planner Viado updated members about a minor mailing process problem related to the Green Waste Pilot Program Survey. With no additional problems a predicted return on the survey will be in mid-January. The prize drawing for the survey will be a compost bin. Associate Planner Viado also informed members that Mr. McGee would be invited to the January 20th meeting to give direct input relating to the final report of the program. Associate Planner Viado also stated that sources other than MG Disposal were being looked at for green waste disposal.

  1. Review of 1998's Accomplishments

Member Roberts moved to calendar the 1998 Accomplishments to the next scheduled meeting. Hearing no objections from the members the item was carried onto the next agenda.

There were no public comments.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 9:00 a.m. to the next regularly scheduled meeting of January 20, 1999.
Denise Cyprien, Recording Secretary