Los Osos sewer costs escalating

April 10, 2013

lososos sewerBy KAREN VELIE

The cost to construct a sewer system in Los Osos is slated to run over its $173 million budget because of pay raises, extended contracts and under estimated workloads.

On Feb. 24, San Luis Obispo County’s Public Works Director Paavo Ogren approved a 3 percent pay raise for employees of HDR Engineering. The amendment makes the pay increase retroactive to Jan. 1.

As a result of the amendment, Cal Poly interns working on the project are now paid $49.44 an hour, five of the 27 HDR Engineering employees are making over $200 an hour with the highest paid employee making $267.20 an hour.

“The total of all payments to engineer under the agreement shall not exceed the agreement amount $6,891,632,” the amendment says.

However, on the county’s website it explains that the original estimates of construction management and designer costs are for a time period shorter that then the actual construction schedule because of a large number of lateral change requests and utility line conflicts.

“The planned schedule in each engineering agreement is significantly shorter than the actual construction schedule in the approved contracts for the collection system,” according to a report by project manager John Waddell. “The scope of work for both the construction manager and designer is required to continue throughout the duration of the construction contracts.”

County staff has recommended agreement amendments for both the construction manager and designer to provide them the additional funding. The county is planning to process the agreement amendments within the next two to four months.

In addition, the area in need of road repair is running about 50 percent larger than anticipated and the cost of digging the water recycling ponds is estimated to run several million dollars over budget, the county’s website says.



I cannot sympathize with the plight of the Osans.

They created this mess. They need to live with it.

The adults need to learn from their childish antics, and not botch future huge public works projects with petty tantrums and bickering.


I no longer fantasize about being a major league baseball player. From now on it’s strictly a sewer system engineer in my daydreams.

Jack L

If it would have went in at least a decade ago it would have been a lot less expensive. When the people complain and hold up a project, the cost goes up, and up, and up. That’s something to think about when you do not like 100% of a project. What’s worse, the location, the design, or the HUGE COST by delaying the project?




This is only the start; plan on reading many more articles such as this one. Hey Bruce Gibson, you swore to me in my driveway that the monthly cost of the sewer would be under $165 per month. Are you still sticking to that claim?


Why would you believe Bruce? He is obviously a man of poor character. He lied to his wife, so do you think he would have a problem lying to you?


DING! DING! DING! Score one for simple logic, what a concept. And imagine how great he is at it by now.




Hi Pel….

The Tri-W project was projected to have cost $140 million to built; plus and an additional $15 million for home owner hookup costs ($155,000,000 total).

The current County project is projected to cost $179 million to be built; plus an additional $17 million for home owner hookup costs ($196,000,000 total).

The additional cost to the Los Osos property owners of $41 million is the sad legacy of the movement to “stop the Sewer” in Los Osos; and speaks volumes about the incompetence of the Los Osos BOD that stopped it.


Those hourly rates are excessive and do not seem to be at all reasonable for the work being done. I suppose it’s pretty easy giving away other people’s money (or their kids’ future incomes). Especially since our local “officials” seem to have absolutely ZERO repercussions from their idiocy and dangerous mental states.

Is it a locals-only thing to elect and hire only the least qualified, poorest-performing people and pay them handsomely?


Surprise, surprise, surprise. It’s easy to spend the taxpayers money. Never saw a government project some in early or be under budget. This project is far from over, and come January, there will be another raise. What does Ogren care, it will get his name on that plaque on the wall of shame and his girlfriend, Kelly who was on the CSD Board that voted this project in, will be right there with him. But fear not, the County has determined no conflict of interest happening inour back yard with Gibson, Aspirio, Rodewald, Hill, Torres, Ogren, Kelly, etc.


The Los Osos sewer costs have been escalating since the TRI-W project was halted.


And the costs escalated due to lawsuits against it before the project was barely started. It was slated around $85 million in 2001.

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