In addition to the candidate statements linked in this article, Darin Boville also videotaped the Candidates Forum held on September 30, 2009, sponsored by the Midcoast Community Council and the League of Women Voters. Jacqueline Jacobberger, President of the San Mateo County League chapter, moderated and selected questions submitted by audience members. Each candidate had an opportunity for an opening statement, a minute to respond to each question, and a closing statement.
Darin’s video of the Candidates Forum has excellent sound and video quality, is nicely chaptered so you can go directly to the question or questions of interest, and is posted on MontaraFog at http://www.montarafog.com/Elections/newcomers-face-granada-sanitary-district-incumbents.html
For Granada Sanitary District, candidates answered these questions:
1. Is recycled water important to the community and what is your position on the recycled water project?
2. Do you support the “community Coastal Commission” version of our Local Coastal Program, or the Supervisors / SAMCAR version? [Apparently the questioner meant to ask which version of the proposed Midcoast Local Coastal Program amendments the candidate supports - those derived from the community and recommended by the San Mateo County Planning Commission, or those redrafted by the Board of Supervisors.] (Incidentally, SAMCAR is the San Mateo County Association of Realtors.)
3. What will you do to continue our low sewer rates?
4. Why hasn’t GSD built a storm water system to stop sewage spills on our beaches?
5. What do you see as the most important problem facing the Granada Sanitary District at this time, and how would you work on it?
Other resources for information about the candidates include the official Sample Ballot booklet, which contains brief statements from the candidates, the League of Women Voters “Smart Voter” web site, http://www.smartvoter.org/, and individual candidate web sites.
Lisa, like all of us, is concerned about the pollution in the harbor and on the beaches. The harbor pollution is a multi-headed beast involving the creeks, additional runoff from more impervious surfaces, boats, the occasional sewer overflow, and even the thousands of seagulls in the harbor. GSD has been working with the County Health Department and SF scientists to determine sources of the pollution using techniques, including DNA testing of the e-Coli bacteria.
GSD has also launched a wet weather project to stop the sewer overflows. The Sewer Authority Mid-Coastside, after years of analysis by every district engineer on the Coast, chose a buried pipe project because it was less than half the cost of the only other project studied. Because of its simplicity and lack of need for a full EIR, it could be finished years before the other project.
The project supported by the Challengers is higher in cost and will take years longer to go through the approval process. The groups backing the Challengers were successful in getting HMB to withdraw from the project, thereby sticking GSD and MWSD ratepayers with the whole bill. Lisa is concerned about the proximity of our project to Surfers’ Beach. Her option lies between our project and the beach.
In summary, the challengers want to shut down the existing project, re-start a more expensive project, while forcing our ratepayers to pick up the whole bill for HMB. Lisa also doesn’t mention that the challengers have advertised their intent to shut down GSD and merge it into the HMB system.
We like being the lowest cost district on the Coast. We have already launched the most effective project for our district. All they are offering is delays and higher costs.
Bill and several of his backers seemed obsessed about the fact that the Sewer Authority Mid-Coastside (SAM) Wet Weather project involves a land purchase. The project that was chosen by SAM is less than half the price of the project proposed by the challengers. That’s less than half the price, including the land. Why do they insist on a more expensive project that will take years longer? Bill says we are lying about the timetable for the project. Applying the same delay factor to his project would mean it could take 4 to 5 years to complete.
Bill seems to be saying that sewer permits take too long and are too restrictive. He appears to back a policy that anyone should be able to build anything they want, regardless of zoning or other Local Coastal Program (LCP) rules. GSD has streamlined the permit process for conforming projects. We have opposed non-conforming projects, such as, the residential development with wells and septic systems in the Burnham strip supported by his backers. Bill, apparently, would support non-conforming development on wells, in spite of the County’s report that our aquifer is in danger.
Bill says the Incumbents are complacent. Just for starters, we have :
1. Launched a project to get an old sewer pipe off the failing Medio Creek Bridge.
2. Co-authored the Pilot Recycled Water project which is now producing high quality recycled water for the Golf Course
3. Launched the wet weather project he opposes and
4. Implemented a computerized project to track all sewer pipes in the district with data on location, age, history of repair, etc.
That’s hardly complacency.
Bill says he is for change. Apparently he certainly is. His recent HMB Review ad states they back the plan to shut down GSD and merge it into the HMB structure. That’s change all right. Shutting down the lowest rate district and turning it over to the groups that just stuck HMB with a $30 Million debt is not the change we support.
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