Gibson plants 500 trees while calling for ag moratorium

October 31, 2013
Bruce Gibson

Bruce Gibson

By KAREN VELIE and JOSH FRIEDMAN

San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Bruce Gibson planted 500 new citrus trees on his rural Cayucos property several months ago while pushing to impose tough water conservation measures on agriculturalists in the Paso Robles Groundwater Basin.

Neighbors in rural Cayucos say that while they have been struggling to water their orchards because of drought conditions, District 2 Supervisor Bruce Gibson planted an additional 500 citrus trees on his Cottontail Creek Road ranch.

Gibson, who recently announced that he is running for a third term, placed the ranch on the market in June after his wife, San Luis Obispo physician Dr. Grace Crittenden, filed for divorce. Last November, the supervisor admitted publicly to having a long-term affair with his administrative assistant Cherie Aispuro.

“Several of my neighbors don’t have enough water for their trees,” said a neighbor who asked not to be identified because of Gibson’s position. “The new trees appear to be about two to six months old.”

Gibson’s Cottontail Creek Road property includes 800 mature, 250 mid-size and 500 newly planted citrus trees for an asking price of $2,595,000, according to the property listing.

Bruce Gibson's ranch

Bruce Gibson’s ranch

With approximately 15 acres of citrus, Gibson’s ranch would need about 30 acre feet of water a year in addition to rainfall. Irrigation experts from University of California Cooperative Extension and Cal Poly, as well as neighbors of Gibson, said an acre of citrus trees in the Cayucos area requires about two acre feet of irrigation water per year.

Six years ago, Gibson pulled 11 acres of citrus trees and reduced his orchards from 20 acres to nine acres. Several years ago, he planted two additional acres, and a few months ago he planted about four acres of citrus trees, increasing his crop to about 15 acres, according to his property listing and several neighbors.

Gibson did not respond to questions about his water usage.

His ranch has two wells — one onsite and one on a neighboring property owned by the Whale Rock Reservoir, according to the listing and the reservoir office.

Upon the creation of Whale Rock Reservoir in the 1960s, four neighboring properties with wells that would be influenced by the water table received specific water rights, Whale Rock Reservoir Supervisor Noah Evans said.

Gibson’s offsite well is allotted 15 acre feet of pumping a year. The well is metered and monitored by Whale Rock staff.

The household well on Gibson’s property is not metered. It is also unclear whether the permit for the household well places any restrictions on the owner’s ability to pump water.

Following a CalCoastNews request, San Luis Obispo County Environmental Health Services staff could not locate the permit for Gibson’s household well in its database. But, Environmental Health supervisor Richard Lichtenfels said he would try to provide a physical copy of the well permit in the future.

Earlier this month, the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors extended its urgency ordinance that restricts water use in the Paso Robles Groundwater Basin. The basin spans most of Northern San Luis Obispo County east of Highway 101 and includes rural Atascadero, Templeton and Paso Robles.

The ordinance, which lasts until 2015, prohibits new development in the Paso Robles basin that uses more water than it saves.

Gibson led the effort to adopt the ordinance and initially called for water usage restrictions twice as steep as what the board adopted. He said the water moratorium was necessary to stabilize the basin.

Opponents of the moratorium argued that their property values would plummet due to the ordinance prohibiting them from planting on their undeveloped properties.

The supervisors have not restricted water usage for additional areas of the county impacted by the drought and the lowest year to date rainfall in recorded history.


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r0y

Were any laws broken?


Gibson is not someone I would trust delivering the mail, but I fail to see how this is an issue if it is only about hypocrisy. Of course he is a hypocrite – he’s a politician with the appropriate “pedigree” for being a low-life. Sorry to burst any bubbles, but if you didn’t see this coming, then you probably should not be reading the news.


Still, there are no laws (even if he was “pushing” for tougher ones) being broken here. Might as well just change the headline to read: “Local politician a big hypocrite” because that’s the only story here; and again, it should not surprise anyone with an ounce of common sense.


judith

Of course Julie wants to make this project more exspensive, or to stop it altogether. Didn’t she once promise “There will be a sewer in Los Osos over my dead body !” ? I remember it well.


Julie

You conveniently left out a couple of key words Judith.

“There will be a sewer in *the middle* of Los Osos over my dead body.”

That was the Tri-W site, since it’s not being built there, I’ll live on.

I remember it well.


Julie

As for the project being more expensive, I couldn’t possibly drive the price up more than the County has on their own. The plant design has ballooned to $46.5M and we haven’t even seen those bids come back. If you recall, my and Jeff’s comments during site selection in 2009 cautioned the County on the sites environmental constraints. Sure enough, that’s what’s caused the price to escalate, they could have had any property that made sense and they chose a “willing seller.” Yet they ended having to use eminent domain to take his land after all. If they were going to have to go that route they should have picked a piece that made better sense. They knew the pricetag was rising long before they closed escrow, they made a choice, they consciously drove the price up. Then lie about why the design cost increase is necessary. The need for higher treatment is a bald face lie, the discharge permit requirements have been the same since 2003.


Lynette_Tornatzky

I have nowhere below to answer Julie’s 11/313 6:35am comment, so I’ll have to do it up here.


Granted, the technology at Tri-W was expensive, but it kept the water in town and as we are now about to see, out-of-town could be JUST AS, if not MORE, expensive. We are paying in perpetuity to get the water out of town and paying to bring it back. The cost of energy in the future will dictate that cost.


Not true about the downtown properties suffering (beyond the construction part anyway). There is a scalping plant UNDER the park across the street from the Beverly Hills Hotel. I don’t think that has hurt the property values at all, plenty of ritzy, high-price tag houses around that park.


My point about the pond was, people LIKED the idea of a pond. For sewer water treatment. In THE MIDDLE OF TOWN.


So, if you went to the same sewer plant later in Pacifica (are you talking about the Calera Creek Water Recycling Plant that uses wetlands?), when the plant was up and running, the one you gotcha’d Rose Bowker on, did you notice any smells? You didn’t mention what you noticed apart from the sign.


No, you personally didn’t threaten the contractors, but even late comer I know who did. It was the letters sent, not the much later recall signs around town that influenced the contractors. They were threatened just to BID on the project. No wonder there were so few bids and they were high!


You can’t expect contractors to read some silly signs and conclude the signed contracts they had AND the orders to proceed working was OPTIONAL for them! Do you think if they had pulled out of their contracts and that word got out they would ever find employment again anywhere? Don’t try to pin the blame on the contractors! Did you ever understand that they were moving workmen AND THEIR FAMILIES, plus loads of equipment into town and that takes a lot of TIME AND MONEY to do. And when were those contracts signed? 2003, 2004?


I guess my anger at the way out-of-town was sold at the recall was because there was no plan in place other than just to stop Tri-W. Vague ideas, AND NO PLAN. Yet, $100/out-of-town was touted. That’s what sold the recall. 20 votes difference. Yes, the recall should have been done much earlier, everyone concedes that now. We would have been flushing and forgetting for the past five years.


That the Tri-W disposal plan didn’t have the capacity for build-out was to be determined later, IF THERE WAS GOING TO BE A BUILDOUT. (Did you forget about the injection wells in town? That was the plan if it came to that.)


The Blakeslee Compromise isn’t the issue here. Had you agreed to a 218 vote, the thing the SRF folks requested, the thing you and others railed against NOT having with the Tri-W project—you would have kept the SRF money! THAT WAS THE STICKING POINT and YOU CHOSE NOT TO DO A 218. Guess you forgot the November 1, 2005 letter to Bleskey from Barbara Evoy of the SWRCB. Guess you forgot that you said on another blog that you felt that you couldn’t afford that 218.


I don’t think YOU see this as a Win/Win. Every step of the way you have dogged and punished the County on their project. Every week you crab at them. No, you are still burned that you DIDN’T win.


Nice that you were “…disappointed in the result,” but an apology for the mess would have been a much better answer.


Lynette_Tornatzky

My question to you Julie: did you vote to form the CSD?


Julie

Lynette, you already know the answer to that question. What’s the relevance now?


FYI, Jeff voted “no” AND ran for a seat on it at the same time (I think 10 candidates ran altogether). His concern came to fruition, the slate of candidates associated with the Solutions Group got in and there was not a one of them that had any differing views or ideas. He hoped to be elected to that board (1998) to bring the diversity they sorely needed.


Lynette_Tornatzky

No I didn’t know the answer.


The relevance is, if you say that you voted for a CSD to be formed, the creation of it was predicated on a sewer pond plan in the middle of town to replace the old County project on the edge of town. So it is disingenuous to say that “there would be a sewer in the middle of town over my dead body” when in fact, you voted to form a CSD to make a mid-town sewer pond.


Julie

This is where you don’t have the benefit of living the history Mrs. Tornatsky.


Eighty-seven percent of voters in 1998, including myself, were voting to form a district (to “control” more than just a sewer) and people (Stan, Rose, Pandora, Gordon and Silvia) who “sold” a sewer ponding system (like Arcata’s) that included a bird sanctuary, wildlife refuge, wine tasting and weddings incorporated into the low price $33 million slick design. “Faster, Better, Cheaper” and all for the low, low price of only $33 million. That project was sold as greener, low energy and we could keep our septics with only potholing done to the streets for STEP collection sewering of only the low lying areas of town. Voters were willing to sacrifice the downtown in order to save themselves and their neighbors, from the high priced County’s conventional sewer plant next to Los Osos Middle School (on desirable land that has now been preserved as part of the greenbelt).


Have you ever visited a sewer pond? They are quiet and low tech, quite peaceful, but can stink to high heaven and have “floatables” in them, not desirable at all.


I voted “No” on the assessment in 2001, which was for a conventional sewer in the middle of town. (My husband, Tom, voted “Yes.” (We had to get our ballots separated — a huge fight at our house).


My statement was made in 2002, “there would be a sewer in the middle of town over my dead body”, well AFTER the ponding scheme was scrapped and the design had changed to a half buried, odor scrubbed, wave-walled (architectural extravaganza) with a park that had been scaled back to be nothing more than a drainage retention basin that’s price had ballooned to $87 Million (the Value Engineering done on the project actually drove the estimated price up to $92 million). Then the SRF folk’s offered a loan that had a 50% over clause, contractors knowing that, the bids came back at $134.5 million.


If we were going to pay $134.5 million, plus the $20 million assessment, spent purchasing properties and doing the environmental work on the project, come hell or high water that damned plant was not going to be built downtown where we would pay in perpetuity for its effects on the downtown.


The move to out of town was supposed to save money, even the County agreed with us. The plant design has now gobbled up any of that savings. What a shame.


Lynette_Tornatzky

While I wasn’t here at the formation of the CSD, I certainly have the personal histories of that time from many friends who lived here a LONG time before I arrived.


One sign I recall very clearly from my first months here in 2005, “We Delay, We Pay.” Well, truer words were never spoken.


You must know perfectly well, the other things the CSD would control were along for the ride. There was no push to have a CSD without the sewer project.


Yes, the sewer pond was what was sold, so the pretty pond with floaters didn’t scare you away I guess. But the reality was, the Water Board was having none of that and plans HAD to change. Were you at meetings attempting to craft what was to follow? By the time you were voting NO in 2002, well, what had you done? Oh that’s right, you came in after the NO vote, then there were all those lawsuits that brought the sewer cost up and up and up.


The effects on downtown: An odor scrubbed, mostly buried plant with a real park (that has been done in other communities you know, remember Patricia Johanson of Corollo Engineers and her sewer park in San Francisco?); no bankruptcy as a blot on the CSD’s credit that will be there for years to come, hampering its ability to improve water infrastructure; five years of water savings, oh, I could go on.


You must be aware that the overbidding on Tri-W had to do with threats made to the contractors. They had to cover those threats to their machines and materials. How stupid and short sighted and just downright mean was that? Seems like all of the dishonest doings backfired in that “what-comes-around-goes-around” sort of way, haven’t they?


So now we are paying for the cost to ship all that water out of town and ship it all back. The $154 million project is now a $173 million project, never mind the O & M.


The move out of town hasn’t saved any money in the long run now has it? You really think your board would not have had these very same sort of cost issues that the County is having? Oh, but wait, you thought the Water Board would not fine us and that you would keep the $134 million loan, so I guess that would not have occurred to you. You sold the town a bill of goods yourself, so you really should NOT be throwing ANY rocks at the newly minted and novice first board which was nimble and smart enough to get a plant designed, all the permits issued, DESPITE the multiple lawsuits and a very hostile minority. All your board managed was a bankruptcy.


Yeah, it is a shame all right, but hubris sometimes leads to a bad result.


Julie

Lynette, don’t you see that having the sewer in the middle of town drove the price of that project up? To pay in perpetuity for its noise, odor and park-like features ($7,000 drinking fountain) we were paying a higher price. The downtown and properties around it would suffer, never to recover and that cost could never be calculated.

The CSD was to come with the sewer, but not all CSD’s have sewer plants to manage, so I don’t know what your point is now. This sewer belongs to the County; I’d prefer the CSD doesn’t get it back.

As for the snow job sale of ponds, do you think they put the floaties in the pretty pictures? No, that and the fact that the Water Board wasn’t going to accept it was never told to the public (we didn’t learn those dirty little secrets until the election was over and they began designing something entirely different than what was presented prior to the election of 1998).

You asked if I was involved in crafting the post-pond design, actually I was not; I lived outside the PZ at the time. I didn’t pay close attention (as much of the community didn’t) until the price on the assessment vote material had jumped to $87M. I did attend one of the location meetings in fall of 2000, this was when they proposed the red herring, golf driving range and Adrianne Jenkins (former fire chief’s wife), who lived outside the PZ and would not get a vote, went door to door in Sunset Terrace, Monarch Grove and all through the Martin Tract and mounted huge opposition, filling the Monarch Grove Elem. Auditorium opposing it.

Did you ever read Gordon Taylor’s accounting of the site selection? It’s a hoot, tells the tale of a computer power point and a glitch that put Tri-W at the top of the list. That was in the tiny room at Sea Pines (few people could fit inside and for some reason, AGP wasn’t there).

While I never went to the San Francisco sewer plant, I have been to over a dozen that use all different kinds of technology, including the one MWH pointed the LOCSD to, took them there on a meeting junket (AGP went too, watch that tape) in Pacifica. Upon their return, Rose Bowker repeatedly (for years) told the public she had lunch across the street on an open patio and didn’t smell a thing. It wasn’t until I went to the same sewer plant and noticed the bronze plaque on the wall commemorating its startup date…tah-dah…the LOCSD was there two weeks prior to its start up, it wasn’t treating sewage yet. It was only running water through it, building its bugs.

I didn’t “threaten” contractors. I was kept out of a meeting with contractors, I was a board member, I had the right to be there. I helped put up signs all over town that said “Recall.” The contractors could read those, suggesting they wait until the recall vote (which was postponed to almost the latest date possible) they took a risk, they lost.

We were promised by staff (in a meeting with Darren Polhemus of the SRF) that we could suspend the project (which is what we did) and amend the loan request to include a different site. Had we been left to work through the contract with the SRF, I still believe we would have been able to move the plant…look how today’s project still hasn’t turned a spade on the plant. All these pipes in the ground, we were told “no”, but they are allowed to. Hmmmm, we were willing to go gravity with the Blakeslee compromise.

Maybe you don’t know that the Tri-W disposal scheme did not have capacity for buildout? In order to allow for it, we were going to have to add pipes to the farmland, just what is done today. So technically, this project is still cheaper because it got more pipe and it wasn’t until very recently we learned the plant wasn’t going to be as inexpensive as expected. Again, a location we warned them about.

As for the bankruptcy, well Lynette, if we’d been allowed to proceed on the collection system, retain those contractors, avert “fines” that upstanding citizens of the community orchestrated, we might never have gone into bankruptcy. Since we did, I’m very disappointed in the result. But, I wasn’t there after 2008, the decisions in Closed Session (although influenced by 2AM phone calls with Paavo Ogren) we not mine to make.

Nevertheless, the community doesn’t have a sewer in the middle of town and Pandora has her park. Win/Win.


MrM

Julie,


No doubt many events have transpired (both within and outside of your control) that have lead to the Los Osos sewer project reality and costs we are experiencing today.


That being said, regardless of your espoused motivations, rational and behavior on all matters sewer-ish, may I be so bold as to make an observation………..and that observation is that, in truth, all your years spent on public advocacy and service on the CSD board has resulted in exactly the opposite of what you intended. All your efforts to realize some type of ‘Julie-approved’ sewer at a lower cost to Los Osos have failed miserably.


Los Osos is living the result of your failure to fulfill you and your boards’ promises to Los Osos while serving the LOCSD. That you today blame others for your failure just highlights the failure even more; and makes it very clear that you and your board were not realistic or politically savvy enough for the then-tasks at hand. To make matters worse, that you and your board watched the post-recall situation steadily spiral out of control while hemorrhaging millions of taxpayers dollars; you did nothing to stop it other than drag the community towards and into bankruptcy while abstinently refusing to accept the State’s compromise to get a project back on track.


MaryMalone

From what I’ve learned working closely with a CSD, I would not vote to form one if the issue came up for vote in my area.


FineWine

Typical Liberal! Do as I say, not as I do!


RU4Real

Well, Gibson is “above the law”, don’tcha’ know?


MaryMalone

That is NOT a “typical liberal.” There IS no “typical liberal.” If you don’t believe me, try to get a brunch political meeting accomplished without at least five people calling you up, insisting that a certain type of pastry must be served. We argue about EVERYTHING.


That is a strength of our party. We don’t walk in lock-step unison, as do the conservatives. We don’t blindly follow what our party leaders and politicians tell us to do, nor do we continue to support them on issues we don’t agree with, just because they are important people in our party.


I am a life-long Democrat, and a strong opponent of the Obama Administration. He will go down as perhaps the worst of the Bait-and-Switch Presidents we’ve ever had.


I am not surprised that the new health-care insurance policy rolled out so clumsily. He was never really behind it from the first place. He had actually stopped even mentioning it in his speeches the December after he initiated working on it (which was long after he massively increased the troops sent to the Middle East to slaughter). He was shamed into start limply supporting it again the next January. That was because Nancy Pelosi was the one pushing for it. She would not let it stop. It was a key promise of his campaign and she knew the Democratic Party would be devastated if he committed another bait-and-switch scam regarding the promised health-care initiative.


Obama ensured, however, that we would not save the $billions he promised. Even before arguing even started in Congress over what would be in the health-care initiative, Obama made a public statement that he would not make the pharmaceutical companies submit to competitive bidding for supplying medications and other medical supplies to the government. Big PHARMA didn’t even have to ask!


So stop with the “typical liberal” BS. It just shows your ignorance. I and the majority of liberals are living proof that you are wrong.


I still support the health-care initiative, even with its flaws.


OnTheOtherHand

I agree with your evaluation of Obama but from where I stand, your generalizations about conservatives walking “in lock-step unison” is a gross exaggeration too and while there may be some like yourself that are critical of his hypocrisy as well, they are too few and too powerless to effectively call him on it.


(You might want to add Sen. Feinstein to that list. The way she just switched from ardent NSA supporter to finally calling for some real oversight and control makes her a real hypocrite as well. What was she doing for all that time in charge of the Senate Committee whose purpose was precisely “oversight”?) End secondary threadjack.


Lynette_Tornatzky

Who held the County teetering over the brink with the government shutdown and possible default? Was it the Dems or the Tea Party drunk Repubs? That is where the lock-step idea came from. Is that a gross exaggeration or a fact?


MaryMalone

Feinstein is not a practicing Democrat. She votes conservative, and uses her amassed power to serve corporations.


I am aware that not all Republicans are robots to the party’s orders, but the fact that the GOP is now stuck with the nutball Christian Right (which Ronald Reagan so desperately courted to get elected president) anchors it strongly in the nutball-right zone, IMO.


Julie
Lynette_Tornatzky

Not true. The Water Board is allowing this. Please check your facts. See their letter back to the Los Osos CSD at this link:


http://losewersaga.blogspot.com/2013/10/regional-boards-response-to-locsd-letter.html


kayaknut

Are you going to argue that at the least he is not stopping it, because he could if he wanted too.


Julie

Lynette,

Bruce is on record saying “the bay is the last resort.” the bay was “Option 1” in all four of WARasic’s disposal scenarios.

He is also on record calling the water “trash water.”

He’s doing nothing to stop the waste, which he, as the project “owner” could.


The Los Osos WASTE water project lives up to its name. Waste’s water.


Lynette_Tornatzky

Julie,


Mr. Gibson is not the “project owner” for starters. All five Supes voted to accept this project. And we are at “the last resort” stage as no other feasible places are left for disposal without serious disruption and COST to the community.


You really want to make this MORE difficult and expensive for Los Osos residents? Seems like both of those negative modifiers are used to describe the project weekly at the BOS. It is not disruptive or expensive enough for you though, is that it?


The Water Board has been very tough on all things water in Los Osos, you yourself have said so many, many times. They are not freaking out about this, in fact, quite the opposite. Did you not read the letter the Water Board sent to the CSD answering their letter? If not, please do so at this link.


Julie

Lynette,


Are you kidding? The project is Gibson’s, watch as he rolls out the campaign material touting his success in finally implementing the long awaited sewer system.


The cost to pipe dewatering water was in the bids, as was the proposal from WAR, no additional cost passed on to the ratepayer. They knew the goal and the preference of the County/Project Owner. They chose the cheap way out.


I have read the letter from the water board to the LOCSD, it is as ridiculous as the quotes from Harvey Packard in the latest Bay News.


Why Broderson can’t be used: “The County explained that certain issues need to be addressed prior to the use of the Broderson site, such as the careful, static distribution of water to the Broderson site so as not to cause damage to the existing infrastructure and to avoid potential erosion of fill.”


Hilarious!


As for Harvey, “We’re not sure why that is,” (dewatering water is of high quality) “It may be the areas where it’s coming out of have fewer septic systems and more open areas, like 3rd and 4th streets. We’re not sure why.”


Now that we all know that the water is of good quality; why waste a drop?

As the Co-Chair of Water Health Through Outreach or WH2O, how can you support wasting water? (That’s a retoricle question, I don’t really care to hear your answer).


Julie

That was supposed to be spelled “rhetorical”. Oops, got interrupted by a 5 year old while typing.


Lynette_Tornatzky

No problem, understood!


Lynette_Tornatzky

Of course you don’t want to hear my answers! So don’t read them!


Gibson voted to accept the project, went to Washington to shepherd the project along financially, has done many, many things to promote it (thankfully) so he has a right to use that in his campaign. But he does NOT control the project no matter how much you wish it.


Piping has been done where feasible. Broderson is being managed by professionals with degrees in this stuff and years of experience in doing these sorts of projects. I don’t know where you mysteriously got your credentials as a project manager, but you are not selling me on your ideas over the OK to this necessary mode of disposal from the Water Board!


Why don’t you astonish us all and put together a cost-free and non-disruptive plan and present it. Maybe then you’d have some teeny, tiny bit of cred. in this matter instead of just the endless complaints.


MaryMalone

Certainly, the LO sewer project is one of Gibson’s ugly “children,” , just like the LO sewer project is one of Pavvo Ogren’s ugly “children.”


They were both integral in spawning the sewer project from heII that LO has become, and have defended it every step of the way.


jimmy_me

The total cost should have been in the bid. If they underbid the contract, then they should have been SOL. But… thanks to the sweet deal and spineless enforcement, Rasic is cutting corners where they can. Acts such as these set a bad precedence. Can you imagine all the other stuff Rasic is doing without our knowledge?


The sewer is being built as a result of “following rules”. Now that it’s being built, why aren’t all the rules being followed?


Lynette_Tornatzky

You are just throwing out assertions to see what will stick jimmy_me. You have NO PROOF to anything that you have written, ergo, nothing is sticking, You just look like a guy that is mad there is going to be a sewer. Boo-hoo.


The Water Board seems satisfied that the rules are being followed. You think they are not tough enough?


Julie

Lynette,

I recently took my concerns surrounding the messes left behind by the contractors to Mark Hutchinson. He is frustrated too. He told me they (the County) and HDR know who is responsible and that the contractors are knowingly breaking the rules. It is cheaper for them to pay the penalties than do the work correctly.


I have also had conversations with the Coastal Commission and Water Board, both are frustrated by the disposal to the bay and admit their condition language was too vague.


I am not the Project Manager (although I have had some construction experience, managing construction projects, unlike you have) but, I am a watchdog and I am familiar with the conditions of the project. To see the blatant violations of those conditions is painful, so when I complain, I back up each complaint with a citation.

We are paying a pretty penny for this project, the conditions were spelled out long before the bids were accepted, each contract agrees to those conditions. Shortcutting on the rules doesn’t drive the cost of the project up, it drives the profit margin down. They signed the contracts, they know the rules (put in place to lessen the impacts of the project) and should adhere to them.


You can be assured, not one of my complaints has led to a change order increasing the price of the project.


Lynette_Tornatzky

I take reported conversations lightly unless there are some documents that you can point me to that back up the statements you make.


You seem to think that setting up miles of water lines or using hundreds of truckloads to dispense the trench water anywhere but the bay is a viable idea.


I will point you to the Water Board’s letter of October 11, 2013 to the LOCSD which states,


“In some cases land disposal options are not feasible….[due to] the distance and infrastructure needed to route accumulated water to existing land disposal locations…the energy costs associated with pumping water to existing land disposal locations, as well as the disturbance associated with routing water throughout the community.”


I’m not clear on your expertise to evaluate “blatant” violations. The Water Board thinks the County is complying with the conditions. Your try to change of the moving of the power building for a lift station fell flat at the Coastal Commission.


What I do see is a continual stream of complaints against every single component of the project which most of us take in stride as being part of a huge undertaking to get this town a sewer. Nobody sane would imagine that this would be pretty or not without a few hiccups. The vast majority of us are not whining about it.


I see this barrage of complaints from you and those few others as sour grapes, pelted one by one at the County from petulant people who didn’t get their own way as to every detail on this project. Annoying but insignificant. And that is why your complaints have not increased project project costs. Sadly, that was all done on the front end with the endless delays from lawsuits and appeals..


jimmy_me

I was told by the sheriff that Rasic was was caught taking water from unmonitored hydrants. That’s called stealing. They did it knowingly and were caught. Do you really think Rasic’s unethical practices end there?


Julie

jimmy_me,


Both contractors were caught (photographed) stealing early on in the project. Without back flow prevention devices they put the system at risk for contamination, very dangerous and irresponsible. Too bad they hadn’t started dewatering yet (more evidence to the fact that the project construction schedule was ill-conceived), they could have used that water instead.


Larger losses of water have come from hitting water lines, a mix of accidents and unmarked lines, that water (the same as hydrants) is drinking water that has been treated (for iron and manganese and chlorinated) by each purveyor and had a higher monetary value than the dewatering water. Ultimately they did start buying water from Golden State Water Co. for dust control and compaction, but LOCSD told them “no.”


LOCSD chose not to press charges, coming to some sort of agreement that was never reported to the public. I do not know what kind of agreement GSWC came to, but buying the water verses stealing was part of it.


MaryMalone

Somebody in government is profiting from this.


MaryMalone

No kidding. He’s a Bait-and-Switch politician, just like Obama is.


Promise one thing and do another. Demand sacrifices from the people that he later thumbs his nose at.


I can’t wait to get Gibson out of office. He is an ethical cesspool, and his word and claims mean less than nothing…because you always have to suspect that he is, in fact, planning to do the exact opposite of what he claims behind your back.


MaryMalone

“Sewer politics” is becoming a sad metaphor for Gibson’s political career. He is so easily bought, and so ethically hypocritical.


BeenThereDoneThat


Citizen

First we have Debbie Arnold getting a permit for a wine tasting room right before the moratorium vote, then we have Bruce Gibson planting 500 trees. Let’s get all the Ag shysters off the Board of Supervisors. They try to pretend they are “farmers”, when in fact, they are just business people looking out for their own bottom line.


SLOBIRD

Hopefully, Gibson will soon be a song of the past and if Debbie does straighten up pretty soon, we should vote her out as well. I am looking to support candidates that are for the people, property rights, and the right to make our own choices as long as it does restrict the next people. So far Debbie as on the fence with me and of course I think we all say a silent thought that soon we will never have to be talking of that immoral self serving/satisfying supervisor.


godislanguage

Boy you’re rich!!!!


So what! What the hell is wrong with running a profitable business!!!!!!


Business is what runs civilization.


By the sounds of it, you want to destroy commerce and go back to the stone age.


This north county water issue is being addressed and is going through due process.


Supervisor Arnold and Supervisor Gibson are exercising their rights as property owners and citizens.


We didn’t elect a religious order who gave up their worldly possessions and vowed eternal poverty to serve on the BOS. They have a right to protect their own interest as well.


Sounds hypocritical, but this issue isn’t black and what as many are painting here it’s about water rights, the north county wine industry and a sustainable water management district & governance.


It’s hardly the place for arbitrary, uniform judgments. Save that for the pitch fork mob.


Reality Check

OUTRAGEOUS HYPOCRACY!!!!!

Gibson had the nerve to demean Debbie Arnold for questioning the extent of the water moratorium and demeaned her for asking for clarity on the limitations of plantings allowed on ag lands. NOW he’s caught doing what he is preventing others from doing. He is using his property to it’s full capacity, while he is taking away property rights from others.


MaryMalone

He was correct to question her motives for her stance on the water moratorium.


He was a bait-and-switch fecal impaction for doing the exact opposite.


SLOthinker

I’m certainly no Gibson acolyte, but I fail to see how this is so hypocritical. The Paso basinis in serious decline. I haven’t heard that the same case exists on his ranch.


I believe that those that oppose the Paso moratorium would also support his right to farm his land. If they don’t, they would be exhibiting hypocrisy.


Lynette_Tornatzky

I agree SLOthinker. All the “evidence” in this “story”against Gibson is anecdotal regarding water. The facts are, regarding Whale Rock Reservoir that it is at 59% capacity despite the drought, AND the water from the four allowed nearby wells is metered, which is not done too many places on private property in the ENTIRE county unless on a voluntary basis.


I would ask CalCoast to do their homework and point out ONE well in this county where, “It is also unclear whether the permit for the household well places any restrictions on the owner’s ability to pump water.” Wait, I’ll answer that: NO. But notice how those weasel words set up the uninformed to doubt what Gibson has the right to do?


As to the location of Whale Rock, “The Whale Rock Reservoir is a 40,662 acre foot reservoir created by the construction an earthen dam on Old Creek near the town of Cayucos. The dam was designed and constructed by the State Department of Water Resources beginning in October 1958 and completed in April 1961, to provide water to the City of San Luis Obispo, Cal Poly State University and California Men’s Colony. The Whale Rock Dam captures water from a 20.3 square mile watershed and water is delivered to the three agencies through 17.6 miles of 30-inch pipeline and two pumping stations.” Source.


So, Cal Coast is slamming Gibson for supporting water restrictions for a completely different area from where his ranch is. Actually, they could have just skipped the writing part and said, “We don’t support Gibson.” That is the very clear message here.


MaryMalone

The issue here is sustainability of our water resources.


And just because you haven’t heard the same water situation at his ranch doesn’t mean it isn’t present, or certainly exhibiting signs of unsustainable water consumption.


How deep are his wells? When is the last time he drilled them? Is there a cone of depression in the water table under his orchards?


Lynette_Tornatzky

Well then, why don’t you find out before you condemn the man MaryMalone? Or are you criticizing Cal Coast News for not answering those questions in their article?


MaryMalone

Another fresh delivery of red herrings from the LT Express.


His history of “sewer politics” is the cause for questioning his integrity.


I am not the cause for questioning his integrity.


Don’t blame the messenger…blame the source of the message.


Lynette_Tornatzky

The red herrings are alive and swimming freely in article above. These red herrings are delicious misinformation tidbits and I am catching a lot in the nets I’ve thrown out. However, before consumption through de-bunking, it is best to identify the species, which is what I have been doing here. Some of these commenters are another species of fish, pirahas.


You are just mis-identifying the source MaryMalone, it is not me. I am the one catching them. Put on your specs. Or rather, take off your blinders.


taxpayer

Wouldn’t the California Coastal Commission have to approve any well being drilled at Bruce’s property. Surely they would have a record of whether he has a permit or not.


Jorge Estrada

A copy of the Well Completion Report can be mailed by contacting Michael Van Raalte, State of California, 818-500-1645 ext. 233. There are no grandfathered wells, this report exist for all legal wells drilled since 1951. On a case by case bases, if brought to attention of the SLO County Enviroment Health Dept, any well that can not be proven to meet California’s minimum well construction standards will be required to be abated. This for everyone per State Health Codes.


MaryMalone

He is a county supervisor. He has had the power to get his floozy to work in his office, even after he was severely criticized for it, and with the county counsel’s blessing.


What else do you think he is able to do “under the covers” in the county, metaphorically speaking?


Lynette_Tornatzky

Now MaryMalone’s conspiracy theory extends to the Coastal Commission! Hilarious!


MaryMalone

Red herrings galore from the LT Red Herring Express.


See my previous post at:


http://calcoastnews.com/2013/10/gibson-plants-500-trees-calling-ag-moratorium/comment-page-2/#comment-98578


Lynette_Tornatzky

Nice piece of coding MaryMalone. Tells me a lot.


MaryMalone

It is a link, LT. The key that tells you that is that it is highlighted in green and, when you roll your cursor over it, you will see the url to the post at the bottom of your screen.