No-shows at GDPUD could cost district $$

By From page A1 | December 10, 2012

A special meeting of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District on Friday afternoon was continued after three board members failed to show.

The board was notified on Tuesday, Dec. 4, of the need for the meeting in order to vote on amending the district’s CalPERS contract.

But board members Bonnie McLane, Kathy Otermat, and newly elected board member Maria Capraun didn’t attend.

Board member Norm Krizl said he didn’t know why the three women missed the meeting, saying it was a dereliction of duty to boycott the meeting and to not return phone calls or e-mails regarding whether or not they planned to attend.

Board President Ray Griffiths said that Otermat and Capraun had earlier indicated they might be available later in the day but McLane hadn’t responded at all.

After waiting 30 minutes, Griffiths decided to continue the meeting to 5:30 p.m. in the evening in the hope of getting a quorum. The other option discussed was to meet early Saturday morning.

While there were other items on the agenda, the main reason for the special board meeting was to amend the district’s CalPERS contract to save money on future retirement payments to new hires.

Under the district’s current agreement, employees receive 2.7 percent of their highest pay at 55. Under the new plan, if adopted, new employees would receive 2 percent at 55.

Tight deadlines associated with amending the contract prompted the urgency of the meeting. Those deadlines were based on CalPERS interpretation of a new law governing California public employees pension plans.

According to District Counsel William Wright, the board is required to follow a certain process before amending their CalPERS contract, including making available a revised actuarial valuation of the proposed amendment to bargaining units as well as to the public. This is followed by the board adopting a resolution of intent to implement the amendment. These two action were suppose to take place at the special meeting Friday afternoon.

Then no sooner than 20 days following those actions, the board is required to hold another public meeting to adopt the contract amendment. The amendment then goes into effect three days following the adoption of the amendment.

According to Wright and CalPERS, GDPUD is required to amend its current contract by Dec. 28 if it wants the changes to go into effect.

Failure to adopt the resolution by the deadline could end up costing the district thousands of dollars.

Other actions that were supposed to take place at the meeting included the swearing-in of new district board members and voting on new board members to the Mountain Counties Water Resources Association.

Contact Dawn Hodson at 530-344-5071 or [email protected] Follow @DHodsonMtDemo on Twitter.

Dawn Hodson

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