Wednesday, April 23, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

EID sells less than half its water

EDITOR: The El Dorado Irrigation District’s just released consolidated annual financial report for 2012 reveals that EID sells less than half its water.

For the third year in a row EID sold less than 30,000 acre feet of water as compared to its 65,000 acre feet of water allocations. The report further revealed another 24,000 acre feet of new EID water allocations are expected by 2015.

So with 89,000 acre feet of water rights on the near term horizon as compared to less than 30,000 acre feet of annual sales, why does EID promote a public perception that EID does not have enough water? And why is EID about to raise $60 million additional debt with half going for capacity expansion yet force current ratepayers to finance 100 percent of the new debt?

EID’s management and board-majority continue to ignore that their first duty is fiscal responsibility to the district’s current 39,000 ratepayers…not to add new capacity for future growth that current ratepayers are forced to finance through more rate hikes.

Already 17 percent of current rates are to finance EID’s past additions of excess capacity. In August 2010, EID’s finance director reported that EID had $137 million of excess capacity at that time.

Within the next few months EID plans to raise $60 million additional debt with half going to develop more excess capacity. Half of the 11 percent water rate hike already board-approved for Jan. 1, 2014 will be to pay for expanding capacity.

The November elections for two EID directors cannot come soon enough for EID’s ratepayers wanting someone to represent them and not obsessed with implausible 80 percent growth projections by 2030 and financed on the backs of ratepayers.

GREG PRADA

Cameron Park

Letters to the Editor

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Discussion | 34 comments

  • Running for the Board ???July 05, 2013 - 3:59 pm

    Greg, Consider that USBR often restricts EID to a percentage, sometimes as low as 50 to 75 percent of allotted water rights amounts due to low water years and because they have oversubscribed the water rights well beyond the capacity of the river. How then would you suggest meeting demand in a low water year except by having excess capacity? Consider that the EDC Board of Supervisors are the ones revising the general plan and potentially approving thousands of new residences in the next several years. Consider that the $60M is not for new water rights as you suggest, but for the infrastructure required to deliver water and collect sewage from the thousands of new homes being approved by the Board of Supervisors. You have mentioned groups such as Green Valley Alliance fighting the new growth, and though I attend EDAPAC and support GVA 100%, they have no teeth to constrain a growth happy board of supervisors. The EID board of directors is legally bound to serve the growth approved by the EDC Board of Supervisors. For all the editorials you write, do you have the backbone to run for the EID board ? or just sit back and continue writing editorials with incorrect numbers and insinuations? Running for the Board would mean being held accountable for any misinformation. I don't see you doing that.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 5:03 pm

    Running for the Board ???, Greg Prada is a curious "gadfly". Last September Greg and I had a "conversation" on excess capacity. I convincingly rebutted his silly, misguided assertions on that matter. He now presents the same false statements . . . KNOWING THAT HIS STATEMENTS ARE FALSE. LINK - September 18, 2012 at 11:24 pm - Phillip Veerkamp says - Greg, give it up already! You're not unintelligent. You have been schooled on your false assertions. Who is paying you? Whose stooge are you?

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  • Foaming at the MouthJuly 05, 2013 - 5:41 pm

    Greg Prada is a devotee of the "Big Lie" school of thought.

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  • Greg PradaJuly 05, 2013 - 5:50 pm

    Dear "Running"...please cite where it says EID's board is legally bound to indebt the district and add extra to ratepayer rates to finance growth. According to Proposition 218 (Article XIII, Section 6, article (b) of the California constitution), ratepayers may only be charged for the "property-related proportional cost" of services delivered them. Specifically, note this exact language from this law: Requirements for Existing, New or Increased Fees and Charges. (b)A fee or charge shall not be extended, imposed, or increased by any agency unless it meets all of the following requirements: 1) Revenues derived from the fee or charge shall not exceed the funds required to provide the property related service. 2) Revenues derived from the fee or charge shall not be used for any purpose other than that for which the fee or charge was imposed. 3) The amount of a fee or charge imposed upon any parcel or person as an incident of property ownership shall not exceed the proportional cost of the service attributable to the parcel. 4) No fee or charge may be imposed for a service unless that service is actually used by, or immediately available to, the owner of the property in question. Fees or charges based on potential or future use of a service are not permitted. A California appeals court ruling confirmed that Proposition 218 applies to rates for water services. Now if the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors wants to pass rampant growth and wants extra water and sewer capacity ready at the waiting, they should send EID a check for the millions and millions of dollars of extra costs that legally can't be added to the costs charged to EID ratepayers. EID's board all took oaths to follow the laws of California. They further have a fiduciary responsibility to EID ratepayers to follow the law. Since the EID board hasn't complied with California law and these responsibilities, ratepayers would merely be protecting their legal rights by replacing two of the EID director lawbreakers his November.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 05, 2013 - 7:02 pm

    Greg -- Does that mean the third line for EDH that Phil talks about must be paid for by EDH residents, and not the rest of us that won't receive the water?

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 6:18 pm

    Greg, the west county is AT THIS MOMENT at substantial risk of a water DELIVERY failure. A third main transmission line is needed YESTERDAY. The Gold Hill Intertie is maxed out. The Diamond Springs Main is maxed out. The Folsom Lake raw water pump station is subject to failure AT ANY TIME. Your assertions of "excess capacity" demonstrate either ignorance or deception. You and I were at the meeting when this was voted on and passed by a unanimous vote - - - LINK - •2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan You got to the microphone and blathered through your allotted time. The President of the Board mercifully ended your "presentation." It was memorable in it's absence of substance - - - none of which had anything to do with your theory of "excess capacity". WTF are you, Prada?!

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 8:00 pm

    Kirk - re your question to Prada HINT: When a patient receives cardiac bypass or a stint the heart benefits as does the patient. The key word in EID's master plan is "Integrated" The SMUD water that will be drawn from the White Rock Penstock will augment deliveries to Diamond Springs, Shingle Springs, Cameron Park, El Dorado Hills. That frees up water for east of Diamond Springs.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 05, 2013 - 8:24 pm

    I suppose it makes sense from EID's financial position to do it that way. That suggests the rest of the county that is not served by the third line {eg Placerville, Pollock Pines) will not be on the hook to pay for it.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 8:42 pm

    Kirk, the entire SYSYEM benefits. The summertime demands to the west stress the entire system. High points in Placerville (Placerville Inn, Oak Lane, the Airport) Camino (Camino Heights) Pleasant Valley (Kincade Rd.) The load on Sly Park WTP and Res. 1 in Camino is lightened. It is a SYSTEM, Kirk. We all benefit from the "third line".

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 8:57 pm

    Kirk, another possible answer to "who pays for the third line" . . . . hook-ups in San Stino, Marble, Parker's, The Greek's and a smattering of scattered new customers throughout. YEP! You're off the hook, Kirk!

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 9:15 pm

    Kirk, You seem to have been taken by Prada's disinformation campaign. or - - "cut the nonsense, and get real.”

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 05, 2013 - 10:00 pm

    How is posting the law "disinformation"? That makes as much sense as supplying water to point A is a service to point B. I can only imagine what your sprinkler system looks like.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 10:33 pm

    Kirk writes, "That makes as much sense as supplying water to point A is a service to point B. " By way of example - If Kirks stands up quickly he supplies extra blood to his lower extremities(point A). Then Kirk's head (point B) experiences a loss of blood and he becomes dizzy, he falls down and as his system regains equilibrium, the light bulb goes on, and he gives out a Homer Simpson "DOH" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6GuEswXOXo MAKES SENSE!

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 10:42 pm

    BTW - Have I said recently that Prada is strongly indicating charlatan. Pay attention.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 05, 2013 - 11:09 pm

    And your solution: graft another leg onto the body. Charlatan, indeed.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 06, 2013 - 8:37 am

    Kirk, wrong metaphor to describe LINK - EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan EID's plan(not mine) builds a new "heart, liver and femoral artery" to service the lower body thereby removing stress on the upper body.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 05, 2013 - 10:23 pm

    The disinformation is Prada's implication that EID is in jeopardy of breaking the law. Prada's legal citation is irrelevant. If I write a letter to the editor citing law's that Kirk may not break the careless reader may conclude that Kirk is breaking the law since I cited laws that Kirk may not break. Prada is dangerous.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 07, 2013 - 5:33 am

    The third leg is required to support all that new infrastructure. Not surprising that a technocratchik would miss that.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 07, 2013 - 6:47 am

    technocratchik's evaluation of, "The third leg is required to support all that new infrastructure." Twenty five percent(25%) correct. Seventy five percent(75%) incorrect.(incomplete) Assertion fails. Grade: F This grade is based on the assumption that the west county population grows by 25% over the next 25 years. If the west county grows by only 10% in the next 25 years then the student is only 10% correct and is deemed unqualified for further educational opportunity.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 07, 2013 - 7:20 am

    Again, no surprise you would do such a biased evaluation. A leg represents ~15% of total body mass. If the region serviced by EID experiences ~15% growth in the ~35 years this project is expected to span, the metaphor is 100% accurate. Enough with the nonsense. We agree that the infrastructure needs improvement. We agree that the money that should have been set aside for that purpose has been spent (squandered?) on other work. We agree that existing ratepayers and future development and rate payers will be required to pay for the improvements. What we disagree about is how to resolve these problems. My understanding is you support large, high density development to dilute the burden on existing rate payers. I prefer a slower, more managed rate of growth.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 07, 2013 - 7:53 am

    I have not offered an opinion on rate of growth. If you believe that I have then citation please.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 07, 2013 - 7:54 am

    bump

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 07, 2013 - 10:26 am

    My reference to growth rate was relative to my preference. You support San Stino and the other proposed higher-density developments that represents a higher growth rate than I prefer. But for the sake of re-diverting us back on topic, I'll rephrase that statement: I prefer a more sustainable approach to growth.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 07, 2013 - 10:54 am

    Unfortunately the frenzied crowds are not chanting, Sustainable San Stino!". The hard reality of the economy of scale requires more than you and your crowd are willing to accept. The chant is and the signs read, No San Stino.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 07, 2013 - 1:06 pm

    Sustainable San Stino is not currently an option. At this point it is just "yes" or "no". Your frenzied crowd is chanting "yes", they and I are chanting "no". It is good to have you on record stating you can't imagine any other way to pay for the necessary infrastructure without the economies of scale provided by high density, unsustainable development projects.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 07, 2013 - 1:44 pm

    Kirk, do not, repeat DO NOT craft and present statements representing Phil Veerkamp "being on the record". You have a disturbing pattern of misrepresenting my statements, beliefs, and positions, Kurt. "Sustainable" has more to rate and less to do with density. High density over time can be sustainable. Systems adapt and adjust. Sustainable is more about rate.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 08, 2013 - 8:17 am

    "Rate" may be the controlling factor for sustainability with regard to the narrow focus on water distribution. If you look at the whole integrated problem, you would see that density is the controlling factor for, say, traffic. I loved your advice to us for dealing with increased congestion. So contradictory to the push for EDC West Slope to be one big bedroom community for commuters with jobs down the hill. We really need more employers up the hill.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 08, 2013 - 8:42 am

    No, Kirk. We're not talking about of rate of flow of water. We're talking about the rate of growth in: population housing roads industry resources money supply government services . . . rate of change acceleration deceleration rate of change!!!

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJuly 09, 2013 - 11:39 am

    I was referring to growth rate, not water flow rate. For a given growth rate, higher density favors water distribution (economies of scale) while negatively impacting traffic (congestion and gridlock).

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 07, 2013 - 1:48 pm

    should read - ~more to do with rate~

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  • Ken SteersJuly 08, 2013 - 7:24 am

    This was a good read on an important local issue. Thank you gentleman.

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  • NonsenseJuly 08, 2013 - 8:46 am

    Sustainable has become the most overused word in the dictionary. Define sustainable. Define rural. Spoiler alert: no two answers will be the same....

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  • Laurie Lindenauer BrownJuly 09, 2013 - 8:51 pm

    Lest We Forget.....The Water Planning Initiative was researched, created, and passed by numerous local residents (under similar conditions to those we are now experiencing)in order to assure that there was enough water for pre-existing parcels and any future growth. Water Rights allotments and "Firm Yield"(reliable)supply are not the same in order to take wet/dry year fluctuations into account. No one wants to live under permanent drought conditions.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 09, 2013 - 9:17 pm

    Thank you, Laurie.

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