A dribble of connections is too little, too late; solution needed

Already on the wait list 20 years, don't want to wait another 20 — much less 60 — years to build

cambrian@thetribunenews.comAugust 2, 2013 

Here we are, 12 years after the water moratorium was put in place in Cambria, and we appear to be almost back to square one. It is expected that there will be a vote regarding issuing intent letters at the Cambria Community Services District meeting on Aug. 22. It is also rumored that they will be considering between five to 20 letters of intent annually.

In a recent email from Deryl Robinson, president of United Lot Owners of Cambria, he writes, “this is a big step considering the water moratorium has been in place 12 years.”
I certainly hope that the lot owners as a whole are not pleased or excited by this “big step.”

orry, Deryl, but this is business as usual, cloaked in a veil of the appearance of moving forward. My patience is exhausted and I’m fairly sure there are many like myself.

Another obstruction for the lot owners of Cambria, this “news” is merely appeasement without substance. There are 660 letters to serve. At the proposed rate, the recent arguments in favor of issuing permits are still outstanding. Property values will not be affected in a positive direction. Revenues to the community will only trickle in at a snail’s pace. The political conversation for making progress on the water meter list will still be alive and well. The  ridiculous water-meter commerce will still be thriving.

Finally, I suppose this time frame buys the nay-sayers time to find some other machination for plots to stop growth in town. Is there anyone with any common sense at the helm in this community?

At the rumored rate of between 5-10 intent letter per anum, it would take those who currently hold numbers on the wait list in the 600s more than 60 years be able to build on their land! Some of these folks will have waited for nearly a CENTURY to get one of these golden letters! Reminds me of the golden tickets for admission to Willy Wonk's Chocolate Factory. I wish I could laugh, but I can’t.
The water meter issue is like a festering wound without antibiotics. To save the patient, one need only give a broad spectrum antibiotic and the wound heals and the patient goes home happy and healthy, is once again productive and a contributing member of society.

Instead, the decision makers in Cambria have decided to dismiss modern medicine and instead use the slow agonizing process of maggots (ONE AT A TIME) to disinfect the wound with the patient suffering sepsis and dying while in treatment.  Perhaps that is objective: the patient dies and they never build on their lot!

We have all been very patient without regard to what should be our due property rights. We are all eager to get our lives and dreams underway, but every year some kind of obstacle is thrown in the way of progress.

We would be more than happy to build in eco-friendly ways with conservation in mind. Who determined the 5-10 rate meets the objectives of the community and, since we are property owners within the community, should we not have a say? After all, those who are on the wait list are affected most by this decision. It is we who will be asked to pay to have the privilege of helping to build the desalination plant.

These are in-fill lots — not massive subdivisions scarring the magical landscape of this beautiful coastal town. A swift resolution for the wait list issue would be a good thing for the community in many ways, including bringing more tourism to town, more resident tax dollars for the community coffers and would lift this heavy albatross off local politicians once and for all.

Our water meter number is 213.  At this rate my husband and I could be waiting another 20 years to build. That would make us 80. Maybe I should apply for a variance and build ours as an assisted care living facility? Do the current residents of Cambria really think that by postponing the building process they are gaining something? Who wins here? I just don’t get it.

Those of us who own very visible lots should probably get together to make ourselves heard in some very obvious way — what do we stand to lose? Probably should have done it years ago.

We have all been sitting with our hands over our mouths for all these years being told not to make any “noise” in fear that they would never open up the meters again if we pushed too hard. Well, that strategy has not worked so well for us, has it?

We’ve all lost tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of dollars in appreciation in homes that we could have been enjoying all this time. The town has acknowledged that there is no water shortage at the moment and there is a practical and very real solution to any future water shortage in the desalination plan. The proposed delays are unforgivable. Maybe there is no other alternative other than loud, legal action now.

Joan Linton lives in Walnut Creek. Submit Viewpoints to

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