Nobody's yet answering the key questions of what it will look like, how much it will cost, or exactly where it will be built, but county staff reported progress toward the development of a sewage treatment center for Los Osos during a July 6 meeting of the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Board in Watsonville.
Second District San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Bruce Gibson said that the process involves looking at "all viable project alternatives," including making use of materials from previous attempts and exploring information about new technologies.
The water board seemed pleased with the news, said Harvey Packard, the board's enforcement coordinator.
Though county officials and Los Osos property owners agree that a sewer is sorely needed in the unincorporated town, the two factions disagree on the means of determining its whereabouts and funding.
"It's very clear the citizens want clean water and a wastewater project," said Julie Tacker, director of the Los Osos Community Services District and 36-year resident of the bayside town. "What's not clear is how much they'll have to pay for it."
The county's next meeting concerning the ongoing sewer situation is set for July 17, when they'll talk about the upcoming vote by Los Osos property owners on funding for the project under Proposition 218.
"This is backwards we need a project description first," Tacker said. "The urgency is in us, we just have to have consensus it's at the right location at the right price, and if we have to go to battle with enforcement actions from the water board, then that distracts us from clean water and a project. The citizens really need to see a project description before voting, or I think they'll vote no."
Gibson said that he expects the county to give the water board a more detailed presentation concerning the sewer system at a September meeting in San Luis Obispo but that even if everything goes well, construction still wouldn't start for a couple of years.