Water source questionable for Cambria B&B owner wanting to expand

A Cambria bed and breakfast owner will have to wait a few more months to find out if the county will allow him to use a well that’s been in service continuously since the 1880s to supply five new rooms.

County code doesn’t allow use of wells within a services district, but planners said at a hearing Tuesday that county supervisors can amend that law on a case-by-case basis.

Use of the well at Bruce Black’s historic Squibb House on Burton Drive apparently predates the state’s 1914 water law.

Cautious of setting precedents, county supervisors instructed staff to research how many other wells are operating within Cambria Community Services District, where a moratorium on new water connections has been in effect since 2001.

County planners had recommended that Black prepare a more intense environmental impact report before doubling the number of guest rooms.

— Kathe Tanner