Logical and necessary
We support the foresight of the members of the current CCSD board who are trying to solve Cambria’s water problem, one that has been ignored for years.
The current plan is logical and necessary. All information shows an emergency situation where we face not only running out of water, but also permanently damaging the aquifer.
Along with the rest of the community, we have embraced draconian conservation measures, but conservation alone will not solve the problem. Cambria needs to take steps to replenish the groundwater that has been drawn down to a crisis level. The only solution that can be implemented now — not at some vague future time — is the water treatment facility currently under construction.
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Some in the community oppose any solution because they fear it will lead to uncontrolled growth. Considering Cambria’s level of political activism and the general agreement on limiting growth, this fear is unfounded. The CCSD’s objective must be to provide as reliable a water source for the current population. Growth control can be addressed and debated separately.
There isn’t a viable alternative plan to deal with this emergency before water runs out and our aquifer is permanently damaged. Vague comments about “it will rain eventually” or “we need more storage facilities” are unrealistic and do not address the long-term problem of dealing with drought conditions.
Gary and Charlotte Reddish
Hatred and anger
I read the Sept. 4 Cambrian, and it brought tears to my eyes. Over the years, there has been controversy and words spoken, but I have never seen, read, sensed, such hatred and anger in our wonderful community.
Please GOD, if there is a god, let it rain ... let it rain and wash away this sadness.
How can you call the actions of our CCSD director incumbent candidates anything but reckless and irresponsible? Consider these:
Ignoring serious drought conditions and pushing to issue intent-to-serve letters only weeks before declaring a water emergency.
Placing surcharges and penalties on excessive water use and then virtually giving water away for landscaping and private profit to anyone willing to drive to the Rodeo Grounds and deplete our aquifers.
Railroading a “shock-doctrine” water project through with no-bid contracts and shaky emergency permits; presenting no bond issue to vote; and saddling the community with a shady hedge-fund loan.
Overseeing a drastic increase in water rates that will be felt only AFTER the election.
Allowing the CCSD to use our precious financial resources to create a superfluous PR position and fill it with former CCSD director candidate Tom Gray to cheerlead its incompetence.
We have needed, for many years, a sustainable, reliable, environmentally and fiscally sound water source AND much improved infrastructure, none of which the current CCSD directors have provided during their tenure.
It’s time for fresh, accountable, and transparent CCSD leadership.
Re-elect CCSD pair
For nearly 30 years (10 years as lot owners and 17 years as residents) we have been following the saga of Cambria’s water concerns. Waste has prevailed. Every possible option has been studied at great cost and discarded or indefinitely delayed. When a solution-oriented board was ready to take positive action, the tunnel-vision environmentalists and no-growthers whipped up a frenzy of scare tactics and regained control. It has been a seesaw of positive thinkers and naysayers.
Enough of this nonsense! Our quality of life and our community’s vibrancy are greatly threatened, more than ever with the projected drought concerns. When a community looks dried up, property values are drying up, as well.
If you consider yourself to be a logical, solution-minded person, join us in re-electing Jim Bahringer and Mike Thompson to the CCSD board.
Ray and Valerie Hopkins
Live with no water
I would like to invite opponents of the CCSD Emergency Water Project to voluntarily live with ZERO water for the next month, to show how easily it can be done to the rest of us, who don’t want to risk running out of water when the drought continues.
In finally deciding on a course of action to resolve our water crisis, our current CCSD board has shown courageous and true leadership in taking into account numerous costly studies, many suggested solutions, and varied community input. Further, the board and staff have worked very hard to fund the new project, co-ordinate with all the regulatory agencies, and keep the ratepayers informed.
Despite the often misinformed and unfair accusations by those opposed to the board’s decision, I, for one, see no “hidden agenda,” self-interest or ulterior motives. At every step of the way, the board and staff have shown great skill, professionalism, transparency and integrity in the form of public meetings, updated websites and public notices in the media, all the while providing clear information available to all.
I ask those opposed to the brackish water desalination decision to ask themselves what kind of leaders would ignore the urgent need for a solution to the current drought as well as the clear possibility of even more extreme, long-term conditions. And I ask those who favor the decision but who are concerned about the cost to consider this prudent solution as insurance against dry taps and fire danger.
It is high time to have taken decisive action to remedy a complex problem that has endangered the life of this community for more than 20 years, and a clear majority of Cambrians stands beside this board and applauds its leadership.
Rally around CSD
Hard to believe I’ve spent 43 years watching Cambria struggle with water issues. Money wasted, studies tabled, decent efforts turned aside.
Now the entire state is suffering the drought disaster that Cambrians have fumed over for so long. And locally, a misguided minority has managed to stifle each attempt at securing solutions while the majority silently waits.Enough already! It’s time to rally around the CSD board.
This problem won’t just “dry up and blow away” but if we don’t encourage the board to succeed in its efforts, Cambria just might!
Bike event coming
San Luis Obispo Bicycle Club will host its annual Lighthouse Bike Ride next week along the Pacific Coast Highway between Morro Bay and Piedras Blancas. We will bring 1,200 bike riders from out-of-county to enjoy the Central Coast’s beautiful scenery, friendly people and hospitable lodging and restaurants.
Our friends in Cambria are experiencing a severe water shortage. We will not add to that. We have hired a water truck that will supply all the water needs of the riders and the volunteers who will work in Cambria that day. No Cambria water will be used for our event.
One of the bike club’s major goals is to respect and work with the local people who are affected by our two annual events. We also support local schools and nonprofit organizations through direct contributions of more than $75,000 a year.
On Sept. 27, when you see more than a thousand bike riders on Highway 1 between Morro Bay and Piedras Blancas, please give them a courteous wave and say thank you. They are bringing much to our county and taking away only happy memories of good times.
Robert Fuller Davis
SLOBC Past President
Festivals go on
In September 2013, Community Services District Manager Jerry Gruber announced that we were almost out of water. Yet the board waited until January to impose a Stage 3 water emergency with fines for using more water than allowed per household.
Almost out of water, but Mr. Gruber allowed the Harvest Festival to proceed as well as the Scarecrow Festival. He allowed the Christmas Markets, craft fairs, Amgen and the Art and Wine festivals! Pinedorado 2014 went ahead as usual, and the other festivals are already advertising for the rest of this year.
Almost out of water, and yet the motels, bed and breakfasts and vacation rentals have permitted their visitors to shower as many times as they wish and use Jacuzzi tubs at will.
Almost out of water, but how many thousands of gallons were given away on the Rodeo Grounds?
Almost out of water, and yet the Chamber of Commerce continues to invite hordes of tourists to our village.
It certainly seems that someone has lied to the residents of Cambria. Was the lie simply a way to guarantee that Cambria’s businesses flourish until the CCSD’s preposterous de-brine machine starts working? Makes me wonder.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.
The CCSD Board of Directors took steps necessary to prevent a catastrophe by providing Cambrians with much-needed water. This came about by the Board approving construction of the reverse osmosis plant that treats brine water.
To make sure the board’s actions are not in vain, it is imperative that existing directors Jim Bahringer and Michael Thompson be reelected to the board this November.
It is also important that fellow Cambrians attend CCSD meetings to show their support for the board’s excellent work.
Let’s join together and make sure we get other agencies such as the Coastal Commission to work with us to ensure Cambria has an adequate water supply in the future.
Water is worth it
The ending comment in a Sept. 4 Viewpoint article in The Cambrian, written by Gordon and Christine Heinrichs, was, “Water’s not worth the price of this project.”
I disagree. It’s truly amazing for someone to make such a comment during this time of severe drought throughout California.
After decades of recurring drought, at long last, Cambria’s Community Service District is implementing an Emergency Water Supply Project. Now it’s up to us to maintain the momentum and complete this project.
In the past, earnest and well-intended CSD directors, with plans to solve our community’s repeated water shortages, have been voted into and out of office, because we continue to allow a handful of growth-fearful individuals to block every prospect of ending the cycle of promises, studies and plans, which predictably led to protests by the vocal few, eventually ending in failed projects.
With the no-growth Emergency Water Supply Project in place, Cambria may continue to be subject to water restrictions in times of severe drought, but we will be relieved of the community’s apprehension over running out of water.
For peace of mind, re-elect Jim Bahringer and Mike Thompson for CCSD.
Mark and Christine Landgreen
Freedom of assembly
Two items in the paper last week took issue with the fact that a private organization had a meeting just for its members. To help reduce the polarization that has occurred in our community’s ongoing conversation about what, if anything, will be coming out of our taps in the next few months, I’d like to make two points:
You may wonder why an organization that is growing exponentially would turn down participants? What Jean Matulis didn’t mention in her letter to the editor: Mary Webb and Tina Dickason were standing outside the front door of the Vets Hall, each with a camera, taking photos of each of us as we walked into the meeting. They wouldn’t say why. It was intimidating. The leaders of C4H20 were concerned that inviting the protesters into the hall would create an interruption of an educational session.
With a nod to Art Van Rhyn’s incredible talent, his editorial cartoon calling the C4H20 meeting “secret” is obviously not accurate, since protesters were standing at the door. I hope Van Rhyn wasn’t suggesting that a private organization shouldn’t be allowed to exercise its First Amendment right to free assembly by having a meeting in a hall its members duly rented. If Van Rhyn wants C4H20 to open its meetings to one and all, I’m sure the members of C4H20 would like to attend the strategy meetings that those opposing having “water confidence” in Cambria are conducting.
Barbara Bronson Gray
Stay the course
Let’s not change in mid-stream.
We would like to demonstrate our unequivocal support for Cambria Community Service District General Manager Jerry Gruber and, of course, to our directors in moving forward on building our reverse osmosis plant.
We believe they are doing the right and prudent thing in establishing an alternate water source.
In addition, we strongly support the re-election of Mike Thompson and Jim Bahringer to another term on our Board of Directors. Both are courageous, dedicated, and honorable directors. We do not need to change course in mid-stream by electing two new members. We have done that in the past and, invariably, nothing ever gets accomplished.
Al and Claudia Solomon