We are not meeting the board’s conservation goals and not using budgeted funds to get there.

The general manager reported to the June 30 annual meeting that demand has been reduced only 18% versus last year—short of the important 20-25% reduction  goal.  The FY 2022 budget contains $36,000 to achieve the necessary demand reduction, but only $666 had been spent by April 30.  (Reports for May and June are not available.)

There was a big conservation discussion at the April 28 board meeting, and it was agreed to review progress and make adjustments in July.  However, the July 28 board meeting has been canceled.  If no changes are made until the August board meeting, that will likely be too late to avoid the necessity of switching to imported water with its onerous conditions.

At the November 29, 2021 board meeting, a shareholder suggested using the conservation budget to pay a consultant to go door to door.  President Chooljian stated, “Our staff working one to one did the trick in the last drought.” Neither action was approved.

Conservation was discussed again at the April 28 meeting.  Director Alma Quezada provided information about an organization that provides free leak detection services. A shareholder proposed a “market system” to reward those who meet conservation targets at the expense of those who do not, and staff was asked to look for an appropriate software package.  No progress has been reported on either idea.  The only conservation action taken was to approve the GM’s plan to send all shareholders letters about conservation twice a month, which occurred in May but not in June or July.

Another issue to keep an eye on is that Crestview’s “mandatory” conservation resolution expires November 1, 2022, even though Metropolitan Water District’s restrictions and penalties on imported water continue through at least June 30, 2023.

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