Summary of the GVLA Lakes Water System meeting

If you missed the Oct. 8, 2013 GVLA meeting, the summary below will give you a more in depth overview.

Status of the System

  • Our Lakes Water System (LWS) is owned and operated by City of Vallejo (for nearly 125 years)
  • 74% of the water supply piping network is decades over its useful life (50 to 60 years);  much of the remaining piping network will be over its useful life in the next 10 years
  • Only 809 water service connections pay all the costs; about 8% are excluded to offset easements grants
  • The City is embarking on its next 5-year rate increase study
  • The City has deferred necessary maintenance and piping replacement for many decades

Actions that have occurred

  • The GVLA formally protested the rate increases set by the City in 2009
  • To preserve our legal rights, a “tolling agreement” was initiated by GVLA in 2009; slow response action by the City has required 10, six-month mutually agreed extensions
  • The City finally released a LWS appraisal GVLA requested several years ago; the appraisal is flawed
  • The City is contemplating the possible sale of our system to a Private, Investor-Owned Utility company

Possible Future Actions

  • Private Utility Company could charge us up to a 300% increase in our water bills
  • Future piping and pump replacement costs are estimated to be at least $24.1 million dollars; within 10 years, an additional $6 million of pipes and pumps will need to be replaced
  • Negotiations with the City
  • Protect our position for successful legal claims against the City; consideration of legal action
  • Consideration of forming a Community Services District (CSD ) that could acquire the LWS in the event we could reach an acceptable settlement with Vallejo regarding the terms of such a transfer.
  • Consideration of working with the Solano Irrigation District (SID) for essential services and operation of the LWS.

What is next?

  • GVLA to formally respond to Vallejo with detailed claim of inaccurate system appraisal
  • Funds will be needed for potential legal claims against the City and further exploration of additional options, such as forming a Community Service District
  • GVLA to work with the LWS customer community to raise necessary funds
  • Initiate meetings with Vallejo Administrators to attempt to resolve problems and misunderstandings
  • December 2013 deadline before tolling agreement expires; at that point legal action will need to be pursued if the tolling agreement is not renewed
  • Hold periodic meetings with the Lakes Water Customers to report progress and get feedback
  • Initiate subsequent phases of action.