GM proposing to delete costs and water quality from the well site review process and repeat the rejected qualitative matrix approach.

The Board resolution creating the Well Site Review Process sought to find “the most viable sites that make the best business sense on a like-for-like comparison” and budgeted $20,000 for hydrogeological and/or engineering consultants.  The Board and shareholders wanted something better than the failed qualitative matrix approach previously used.

The General Manager is circulating a draft report asking the Board to stop spending money on anybody but himself and to repeat the qualitative matrix approach that was done to support the Well #7 permit application.  A prior draft of this report recommended that Staff be authorized to hire “a neutral 3rd party hydrogeologist to evaluate suitability of prospective well locations” and a “neutral 3rd party Civil engineer to prepare construction estimates for each of the prospective well locations.”  The current draft replaces that with a recommendation to “Direct the Adhoc Committee to develop and present to the Board, at a later date, a weighted matrix evaluating the remaining six (6) potential well locations.”

This intention is emphasized on page 3:  “This would not include a cost estimate for each location, just a ranking as relative to other locations for particular criteria.”  The revised report then lists six criteria the author “feels comfortable in being able to evaluate and weigh,” but the largest cost—the drilling contractor—is not on the list, nor is any comparison of water quality.

It is unclear if the GM’s draft has the support of the other member of the Ad Hoc Committee, VP and Director Alma Quezada, or of President Frank Mezzatesta.  If the Well Site Review Process is to be changed to replicate the prior process, why not just terminate it and base decisions on the prior report (which was also written by the GM)?

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One Reply to “GM proposing to delete costs and water quality from the well site review process and repeat the rejected qualitative matrix approach.”

  1. The ad hoc committee was formed to recommend the best well location.

    How can the best well location be identified without quantifying both total cost and water quality at each site?

    “At this point, neither our analysis or this report addresses costs, water quality, or potential public scrutiny…” (Feb meeting packet, p. 17). The memo recommends “further analysis” which, if it’s to be taken seriously, must include quantifying total costs and water quality. Anything short of a complete analysis would be short-circuiting the intent of this committee.

    We heard from a few shareholders who are on that committee at the February meeting. They seem more than capable of making an informed recommendation, given access to all the data.

    If in fact reverting to old methods has been suggested, to me that sounds like repeating the past and expecting a different result.

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