On April 26 the Metropolitan Water District may limit landscape watering to once per week. That would cut Crestview consumption 57%, and our rates would go up. A recent letter from Crestview announced the draconian MWD rules would not apply to us if we reduce our consumption by just 20% because our groundwater allocation is big enough to supply all of our reduced needs.
For years, we have been buying about 20% of our water from Calleguas so that we shareholders can use as much water as we want. Some of Calleguas’s other customers, Cal-American, for example, have no pumping rights. Crestview households have better access to larger quantities of secure local water than any other household in Ventura County south of Route 126. If we rely exclusively on that, we would import no water from MWD/Calleguas, and our rates could be the lowest in Ventura County.
This has important strategic implications for Crestview especially if we assume, as we must, that there will be other imported water emergencies in our future.
- We should not sell our company to any other water company or agency, because we would have to share our groundwater, pay higher rates for imported water, and be subject to the acquiring company’s mandatory conservation measures.
- We should get out of the Calleguas contract for Well #8 because it gives Calleguas the right to demand we supply it with more water than we have the right to pump. The contract does allow Crestview to prioritize the needs of Crestview shareholders, but so long as we buy water from Calleguas it could require us to use less water than we are allowed to pump and thereby entitle itself to take some of our groundwater allocation. In fact, the very reason Calleguas chose Crestview to host a new local well is that our mutual company has larger per-capita pumping rights than any other Calleguas customer. Did our board get played?
- The fact that Calleguas water comes with such baggage is another reason to drill a backup well. At present, we meet the State requirement for a backup source of water by having a contract to buy Calleguas water. If it becomes disadvantageous to have Calleguas be our backup source, that would be another reason to have a third well to back up Well #4 and Well #6.
We are forwarding this post to Crestview with a request for a response.
New to this newsletter? Click on the Home tab and read earlier posts. If this newsletter is useful to you, please forward it to other Crestview shareholders so they can sign up to receive future posts directly. Shareholders may comment below.