Soquel Creek Water District to Discuss Survey Results, Will-Serve Letters at Tuesday Public Meeting

News from the Soquel Creek Water District:

The Soquel Creek Water District Board of Directors will discuss a recent survey of the community and re-evaluate providing will-serve letters to applicants currently seeking to build or remodel their property at a meeting on Tuesday -- April 29 -- at 7 p.m. at  Seascape Resort.

The resort is at One Seascape Resort Dr., Aptos, and is open to the public with community input welcomed.

A community survey conducted last month showed awareness and concern about water supply issues -- a concern that has grown sharply since the last survey in 2010. There is strong agreement that new sources of water are needed.

“Our community understands that we can’t resolve the problem through conservation alone, although they do accept that we will all need to reduce our water consumption even more than we already have,” said Tom LaHue, Board President, Soquel Creek Water District.

The survey also explored what the community beliefs are about how much more they can conserve, the attitudes towards different methods of obtaining water, and the concerns of growth and development on water supplies. Results and recommendations will be presented at the meeting on April 29.

At an earlier Board meeting, on April 1, the Board voted to defer approving new water connections because it is simultaneously evaluating the option of declaring a building moratorium.  A moratorium would prevent any construction (new or remodels) that would increase the overall water use on a site.

To ensure a fair and equitable decision-making process, and recognizing that applicants have invested in development plans, the Board will hold a public hearing on April 29 to discuss the will-serve applications and how they fit in with the overall Board efforts to address the water supply crisis. 

“At this point, we are considering every option available to us to protect our groundwater, which is why we will be discussing the option of a moratorium,” LaHue said.
“In the meantime, we owe it to our customers to ensure that we honor their efforts to undergo our procedural process  to meet our standards and comply with the water demand offset program to reduce and conserve water. We wanted to pause here and discuss the issue more fully.”

The District is facing a long-term water supply shortage and is planning a new water use reduction program for the fall of 2014. The program, which will include “water budgets” for residential customers and best management practices for businesses and institutions, is intended to save a sufficient amount of water to slow down seawater intrusion into the underground basins as the District continues searching for additional water supplies.

The  meeting will be recorded by Community TV of Santa Cruz County for playbacks on their government/public affairs channel 25/71.  

The meeting board packet is posted on www.soquelcreekwater.org/meeting-minutes.  

To request for a hard copy of the packet prior to the meeting, please contact Karen Reese, District Secretary, at 831.475-8501x126, by noon on April 29.

A Board meeting on June 3 will include a public hearing on the declaration of a groundwater emergency and moratorium.

The Soquel Creek Water District is a nonprofit, local government agency providing water to Capitola, Aptos, La Selva Beach, Opal Cliffs, Rio Del Mar, Seascape and Soquel.


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