Water district: Supervisors insist on one landowner, one vote
-New Times reports-
In what may become a landmark decision, the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors made a move that could significantly changed the proposed Paso Robles Groundwater Basin Water District’s formation process, the New Times reports today.
At their June 17 meeting, county supervisors reviewed state Senate amendments to AB 2453, a bill that would provide a legislative platform for establishing the proposed district, the report says. The bill passed the Assembly in May, and June 18 passed the Senate Governance and Finance Committee with the new amendments.
Marking a significant change in direction, Supervisor Frank Mecham joined Arnold and Caren Ray — who have had concerns about the formation — in a 3-2 vote to support the bill’s proposed amendments only if the bill is also amended to require a one-landowner, one-vote formation, New Times reports.
Mecham said that while the supervisors may disagree on particulars, there’s still a general consensus in favor of some sort of district. Whether his vote will effectively end the matter, however, is unclear. During the initial roll call vote to insist on the new amendment on June 17—before the supervisors hashed out any of the subsequent details—Mecham paused before saying “yes,” after which Gibson swiveled his chair to the right, faced Mecham, and said with a puzzled look, “So, that just killed AB 2453,” New Times reports.
Read the full story at the New Times
Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian (R-Arroyo Grande), the author of AB 2453 commented yesterday to the Paso Robles Daily News on the board’s action:
“We have been consistent with our efforts to follow the intentions of the Board of Supervisors. The management of water is a local issue that should be managed by local agencies. After receiving their letter last night, I am working to amend my legislation to incorporate the changes sought by the Board of Supervisors. The Senate Governance and Finance Committee passed the bill today with the understanding that I would seek additional clarification in delivering the Board’s message as clearly as possible. I am having our Legislative Counsel look into the proposed amendments and they are currently being drafted.”