Doesn’t make sense
Open letter to the Cambria Community Services District:
First, we would like to thank you for the consideration of licensed vacation rentals and the change to our water allocation at your last meeting. As we previously wrote, our house in Cambria is a business and is licensed and taxed as such. We hope you will approve this change to the business water allocation at your next meeting.
However, it is important for us and all businesses that the allocation of a 20 pecenty reduction in water use be made in a logical manner. All of us operate on a seasonal basis. Averaging annual use and making the monthly reduction based on that doesn’t make any sense.
A far more logical formula would be to use past year's usage in a billing cycle and make the reduction from that per billing cycle. Since this type of reduction is used by many utilities we don’t understand why it isn't what you are planning on doing.
We understand that everyone’s reduced water use will result in decreased income for the CCSD. We would hate to think that the sole purpose to your current policy is to penalize businesses and collect additional funds through the penalties we will be forced to pay.
We appreciate your consideration of our request.
Richard & Louise Mazerov
Homes are homes
If the Cambria community is so threatened by a lack of water, as we have been led to believe, then why would vacation rentals, which are zoned residential, even being considered as commercial? If they are, then even more of our precious resource will be used in a way that is both unnecessary, and raises the question as to the legality of such action.
To unfairly punish second-home owners by allocating a maximum of two units per month, and yet be considering a 20 percent reduction over last year’s commercial water usage for vacation rentals, which was up by 35 percent, is, I believe, a gross injustice.
Second-home owners are unable to have their own families visit, as the penalties/fines defined and implemented by the CCSD, beyond the two units per month, would be astronomical. The surcharges/penalties/fines are also, to my mind, questionable.
The community needs to be treated with fairness and justice; consideration of vacation rentals as commercial entities does not meet that criteria. Are we in a water supply crisis or not? The community would really like to know. Even if we are not, the question still remains how vacation rentals, which will use plenty of water as we head into the summer months, can even be considered commercial?
Proceed with caution
Good citizens of Cambria:
At the recommendation of our Cambria Community Services District I went in search of discovering my water monitoring device. Yes it is somewhere around your house, in a hole and yes, one needs a tool of some sort to pry the lid off.
Then one must somehow get one’s head far enough in to read the all important numbers on the little 3-inch dial. Ah ha!
Now I know how much I have used due to this discovery. Very good to know — but beware friends, because you are almost certain to find, as I did, a host of black widow spiders residing within.
It seems that this suggestion from the CCSD is, like many, venomous.
Water info on tap
More rain has come than expected, there is hope that a brackish water recycling system will be in place by July, and so we can all breathe a little easier — EXCEPT for those struggling to stay within two units or four units per month. (And some of the stories I’ve heard ....)
Of course, a busy tourist season — indicated by various business promotions already underway — could still leave us short of water by late summer, so let’s get some info that will be helpful in the future.
My “Water Solutions” “survival” document is still available (send two stamps to P.O. Box 1681, Cambria, CA 93428).
And, at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 30, at Rabobank there will be a showing of a great documentary film, “Last Call at the Oasis,” presented by the HopeDance .org “group,” including rainwater catchment and water conservation discussions by yours truly and others. (By donation only, but no one will be turned away, space permitting).
This promises to be very lively and we can have the space for at least three hours.
On May 31, I will hold my THIRD roof rainwater harvesting demo at my home in Cambria starting between 11 and 11:30 a.m. (The demo will not include the solar back-up system this time). Please email me at billseavey @gmail.com with subject line “Rainwater” if you wish to attend the FREE demo-tour, lasting about one hour. (You can also sign up using the form from the Water Solutions document mentioned above).
I just want to emphasize that rainwater harvesting can be done fairly simply, but if you need help, any plumbing-related people who contacts me will be referred on to you either at the “Last Call” program or prior to my home demo.
I also want to stress that DIY rainwater harvesting is not merely for irrigation or gardening — this water can/could be used to flush toilets, wash dishes and possibly clothing, and even shower with (using a so-called “solar” shower). And some of it is potable, without expensive filtration.
I sincerely hope these programs will assist you in your response to our drought. They are NOT being put on as money-making ventures.
William L. Seavey
Keep on conserving
A big thank-you to all who have done their part in water conservation over the last few months.
As a further suggestion to help save even more water:
Lodging facilities (motels, bed and breakfasts, home stays and vacation rentals) in Cambria should be required to share equally with permanent full-time residents in water conservation.
As a suggestion, all lodging facilities should be required to conform to the following: empty all pools and hot tubs; disconnect washing machines and dishwashers; use linen services; remove dishes and glassware; provide disposable paper and plastic goods; hoses removed; hose bibs locked; washing cars, fishing tackle and beach items prohibited.
It is requested that Cambria Community Services District inspect all facilities and randomly check during the year to be sure that they conform to water-saving devices.
As an incentive for all to save on water, how about rewarding those who lower their overall usage with a credit to their account?
Talk is not cheap
I have been reading with great interest the comments generated by Tom Cochran’s fine piece in the March 20 Cambrian (“Speak for yourself, CCSD”), both pro and con.
I would like to point out that many who commented missed Tom’s point, and that is the CCSD has no valid reason to hire anyone to explain their actions or lack of actions to the community — they need to be totally transparent and open to the community at large, and not spend the ratepayers’ money to hire someone to front for them.
Finally, and this is strictly my own opinion, the appropriate action for the CCSD would be to apologize to the community and resign en masse.
Just wanted to thank The Cambrian for discovering Elaine Horn and her series “Coming to Cambria.” Great writing, real life impressions, and the column has me eagerly looking forward to the next installment, whether in print or online.
Find a way to keep her going.
Yesterday my wife and I had the privilege of being part of the Coast Union High School Senior Scholarship interviews. These scholarships are given to the graduating seniors by local organizations, clubs and individuals to help seniors who wish to continue their education at higher levels.
Seeing and hearing these young adults certainly made me proud of our community, of the students and the education that they are receiving in our high school.
They spoke not only of what they have received, but also of what they want to give back as they mature.
Sometimes we are not aware of all the assistance that is given to friends, family and the community by this younger group. They are all looking forward to the challenge of making the future better for everyone.
One of the highlights was seeing students, who have graduated in the last few years, at the interviews with their relatives to give monetary help to the graduating students.
Letters must be signed (no pseudonyms), with the writers address and phone number for verification. Shorter letters (under 250 words) on local topics by local authors are published sooner. E-mail letters to firstname.lastname@example.org, mail to The Cambrian, 2442 Main Street, Cambria, CA 93428; or fax to 927-4708. Letters should be received at The Cambrian by noon Friday to be considered for publication the following Thursday. All submissions become the property of The Cambrian.