Meeting Date:

May 16, 2005





David A. Berger,




General Manager

Line Item No.:


Prepared By:


Cost Estimate:



General Counsel Approval:  N/A

Committee Recommendation:  N/A

CEQA Compliance:  N/A


SUMMARY:  The Board’s 2004-05 Strategic Plan approved last October contains an objective that involves convening a public “Water Summit” meeting to review the status of, and the District’s potential role in, a regional water supply project that would resolve the Monterey Peninsula’s long-term needs.  In late November 2004 the Monterey County Board of Supervisors initiated a process of collaborating with cities and water/wastewater agencies in North County and on the Monterey Peninsula regarding governance and management alternatives for a Regional Urban Water Supply (RUWS) project.   On January 27, 2005 your Board adjusted the February 2005 original time frame for the District Water Summit to this month, in anticipation of RUWS governance alternatives having been sufficiently developed.  In response to a staff overview of the RUWS governance alternatives at your April 18 meeting, Vice Chair Markey requested that this item be agendized for discussion to provide staff direction on both the Regional Urban Water Supply Project governance alternatives and the proposed District Water Summit. 


RECOMMENDATION:  It is recommended that the Board direct staff to agendize a Water Summit planning discussion item for its July 18 regular meeting; unless the Board can reach consensus on an alternative special meeting/workshop date in June or July for this purpose. 


BACKGROUND:  The Water Supply section of the District’s 2004-05 Strategic Plan includes an objective that calls for convening a Water Summit meeting following Monterey County’s then-anticipated initiation of a publicly-owned, regional desalination facility (or alternative project) to solve the long-term water supply needs of the Monterey Peninsula and other urbanized regions of the county (Exhibit 13-A).   The purpose of the Water Summit is to address the District’s desired role in such a project and facility.  The policy making process to create a potential publicly-owned, Regional Urban Water Supply (RUWS) project was launched last November 30 by the Monterey County Board of Supervisors, to be conducted in collaboration with effected cities, water/wastewater agencies and interested citizens in North County, the Northern Salinas Valley and on the Monterey Peninsula.  Attached is a copy of the report and recommendation by County Water Agency General Manager, Curtis Weeks on this subject, which was approved by the Board of Supervisors (Exhibit 13-B).   On January 27, 2005 Curtis Weeks provided your Board an oral overview of the RUWS project regional collaboration process, which he stated included his having convened a working group of senior managers of effected cities, MPWMD and other water/wastewater agencies to develop RUWS project governance concept alternatives.  He advised that the RUWS project would likely focus on a publicly-owned, regional desalination facility at Moss Landing, as well as other ways to address long-term urban water supply needs.  On March 21, 2005 Mr. Weeks presented a progress report to your Board on the RUWS project, during which he advised that two good governance concept alternatives had evolved from several meetings of the senior manager working group.  Mr. Weeks stated that he expected these governance concept alternatives would be presented to the county board of supervisors, and effected water/wastewater agency boards and city councils in April.  Mr. Weeks presented a summary of these RUWS governance concept alternatives in an April 4 meeting attended by elected representatives of the Board of Supervisors, mayors and board chairs of the District and other water/wastewater agencies.  Following a staff overview of these governance concept alternatives at your April 18 meeting (Exhibit 13-C), Vice Chair Markey requested that this item be agendized for discussion and direction at this meeting.        


On April 19 the Monterey County Board of Supervisors were presented with these RUWS governance concept alternatives.  The Board approved Curtis Weeks’ recommendation that the County continue to collaborate with the cities and water/wastewater agency mangers on a draft agreement to form a RUWS Board consisting of members of the Board of Supervisors, City Councils and elected Directors of MPWMD and other water and wastewater agencies.  The Board would have delegated responsibility over the RUWS and ultimately be accountable to county government (Exhibit 13-D).  The Board of Supervisors also directed that County funding sources be identified to establish a RUWS program management function.  Finally, the Board of Supervisors indicated that a JPA Board for governing a publicly-owned regional water supply project remains a viable alternative.  Mr. Weeks has advised District staff that he expects the County will be re-convening the senior managers group to discuss key provisions of an RUWS Board formation agreement later this month.      


Staff believes that a RUWS Board formation agreement is likely to be drafted and could be ready for review by the effected public agency governing boards by June or July.  Thus, the District Board should schedule a discussion of the desired content, format and target date for a Water Summit, preferably in a Board workshop, in the near future.  Unfortunately, in checking your calendars, there does not appear to be an evening date in June that all Directors are available for a special meeting/workshop.  Finally, although the TAC has made considerable progress to date, our current schedule anticipates that the TAC, PAC and Water Demand Committee will need until August to submit their report and recommendation for Board consideration related to water demand “factors” for use in forecasting future residential and commercial water need within the District based on the land use elements of the Monterey Peninsula jurisdictions’ general plans.         


Given the timing of related matters recited above, staff believes that the District Board should schedule its discussion and direction regarding the desired scope and timing of a Water Summit at your July 18 regular meeting; unless the Board is able to find a consensus date for a special meeting/workshop date in June or July.  In the interim, staff will begin framing potential policy issues and format alternatives that the Board may want to consider in planning the Water Summit.  In addition to addressing District involvement in RUWS project governance, these could include other potential ways and means to address the Monterey Peninsula’s long-term water needs.  Examples include possible acceleration of future phases of the Aquifer Storage and Recovery project, as well as the District’s method of cooperation with MRWPCA on its Regional Urban Recycled Water Project (i.e. phase 1 of irrigating Monterey Peninsula golf courses, parks, etc.) and Seaside Basin Groundwater Replenishment Project which contemplates conveyance of recycled water purified to State drinking water standards for recharge of the Seaside Basin.           




13-A    Water Supply Objective in District’s updated Strategic Plan (adopted 10/18/04)

13-B    MCWRA General Manager, Curtis Weeks’ 11/30/04 Report to Board of Supervisors

13-C    RUWS Governance Concept Alternatives Summary

13-D    MCWRA General Manager, Curtis Weeks’ 4/19/05 Report Board of Supervisors