At my first meeting as LOCSD director, I made a sincere plea to the other directors to wait only one month to hear an alternative wastewater proposal from the Los Osos Technical Task Force (LOTTF) before traveling to Sacramento to get a loan extension/increase of $139 million.
After receiving direction from the board in late November, LOTTF began working for free to prepare an Alternative Project Report that may save millions of dollars and ease citizen complaints about a sewer in the heart of town. Instead of receiving this report, Manager Buel pushed his â€œpersonal urgency agendaâ€? on our board, who capitulated â€” the vote (3 to 2) was to go to the State Water Board on Jan. 4. A citizen lawsuit, coastal permit revocation, and recall are also in progress, but Buel still plans to put this project â€œout to bidâ€? in January again with so many unknowns.
I called State Water officials â€” they assured me we wouldnâ€™t lose our loan if we waited a few months to hear about cheaper alternatives, but the â€œold boardâ€? and Buel refused to give us this option. I urge every citizen to write, call, and voice your protest â€” that only three members of the Los Osos Board gave authority to the general manager to borrow $139 million dollars for you to pay back. It is your money and your home that is on the line. Write or call: Art Baggett, Chair SWRCB, 1001 I Street, Sacramento, CA, 95814 â€” phone (916) 341-5611. Thank you.