Thursday, February 11, 2016

The Los Angeles Times Ranks Sierra Madre Among California's Worst Performing Water Districts

No golf courses in Sierra Madre.
For quite some time now residents in Sierra Madre have been asking their water department to provide figures that would show just how much water is being lost to all of those busted mains and pipes. Those numbers are still not available.

The reason for this on-going request has been to once and for all help determine the reasons why this city has been unable to reach its state mandated water use goals. Are the residents of Sierra Madre really such profligate water users, or could it possibly be the city's fault? Those questions never seem to get answered.

This matter has now become even more urgent as the City of Sierra Madre has made the Los Angeles Times list of worst performing water districts in the state. Not a good place to be, unfortunately. Sierra Madre has apparently also become one of the few water districts in the state that doesn't seem to know why it is on that list. Nor has it shown that much urgency in finding out why this might be, despite the many determined statements made by Mayor John Capoccia. There must be a disconnect somewhere.

Here's the report, best first, then worst. Click here to view it in the original setting. All of this is connected to a LA Times article called "When it comes to saving water, Southern Californians are tapped out — or are they?" It was posted on their website yesterday, February 10, and can be found here.



To see an individual LA Times report for the City of Sierra Madre, click here.

Back on December 27 the Pasadena Star News published an article by Claudia Palma called "How Sierra Madre’s water issues went from bad to worse due to the drought" (link). In that piece the issue of water main leaks was discussed, along with Mayor Capoccia's stated gritty determination to get to the bottom of all this. 

Public works director Bruce Inman said there is not an easy or quick way to quantify how much water is lost due to the leaks to see how much that is affecting their conservation efforts. The city is split when meters are measured and both numbers are not gathered in the same month, noted Inman.

Despite the community’s extensive outreach and conservation efforts that began long before the state enacted new strict regulations, the city faces a fine from the State Water Resources Control Board for not meeting its target reduction of 32 percent for the last three months.

The city is working with state officials regarding the target and fine, but no final decisions have been made.

“We’re serious about meeting the target rate,” Capoccia said.

About 77 percent of residents met their conservation targets between July and October, according to city manager Elaine Aguilar. Now the city plans to work with those who haven’t, though no meeting date has been set yet.

“First thing is to find out what’s keeping them from meeting the target. There could be something that we’re just unaware of,” Capoccia said. “We want to call them, find out what the problem is and work with them.”

So did City Hall ever get in touch with those people? Given the city's water main leakage problems, would that have actually been relevant? Maybe that is why nothing was ever done, because the city already knew the real reasons for Sierra Madre's poor water conservation record? 

Being among the worst performing water districts in the state is no small thing. It could end up costing the city a lot of money.

Obviously answers are still awaited.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

69 comments:

  1. The city will never admit it is wrong about anything. Even thought it often is. This is one of the biggest reasons why city hall has such an awful credibility problem.

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  2. City of Sierra Madre is just like the central government of California and the central government of the United States and the central government of the European Union. .....they will NEVER admit THEY are wrong....just blame the people and grab more and more taxes. ALWAYS.

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    1. THANKS, Mr. Bundy.

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    2. Thank you Barney Fife.

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  3. So is it a cover up?

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  4. The mayor may care about Sierra Madre's dismal performance but he and the Council are not holding City Staff accountable. When Staff say something can't be done, or it could be done but it's too hard, there is never any pushback from the Council. The minutes of the Jan. 26 City Council meeting include a report from Public Works about their outreach efforts to the top 30 water users in the City - you know, the ones who "must" be wasting all this water. Public Works reported that staff "made 25 connections with the following results": 3 requested water audits, 8 requested additional information, 4 said they'd had water leaks that had been fixed, and "1 refused to alter their habits". Apparently staff has challenges with math because 3+8+4+1 adds up to 16, not 25. But the Council just accepted this ridiculous "report" and didn't even ask staff about the other 9.

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    1. The Elephant in the room is The Kensington. That was a huge increase in water demand. Tattler warned about it and CC ignored us.
      Any specifics on the Kensington water consumption?
      With 75 residents and 25+ staff ,the total consumption must be equivalent to at least 40 homes?

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    2. During the Kensington hearings, the city was assured that the elderly residents used very little water....yep.
      It was thoroughly discussed before approval. The residents are the ones responsible for the approval.

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    3. So what specific useage was the Kensington expecting?
      Answer: our dumb CC never got a specific figure so there is no way to judge if the Kensington is making an effort to reduce water consumption- unlike the rest of us.

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  5. Apparently the answer was to deflect blame upon a portion of the community, claim there would be a meeting with these people to get to the bottom of things, and then not do it. The result is we are now one of the ten worst water abusing towns in California. Congratulations! Tennis, anyone?

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  6. My neighbors and I are doing our part, and have the dead lawns to prove it, and the big but not punishing water bills. Where is all this excess usage?

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    1. Excess usage?...how about the infrastructure...leaking pipes?

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    2. Sshhh. Reality is not welcome in the comments today.

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  7. Just when goes the madness stop, if it's not one thing it's another with Sierra Madre's form of local government - it's broke and that's meant as in more ways than one.

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  8. Don't the Chinese have a saying that goes something like this,"A fish smells from its head." There ya go.

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    1. In reality it is the guts of fish that rot and stink before the head.Just saying don't get your panties ruffled.

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    2. The correct saying is "A fish rots from the head down." Try Google. There's lots of interesting stuff there.

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    3. Hmm I'll have to go to the library to check that. I don't get Google on my computing machine. Thank God for the library.

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    4. Mafia term, too.

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    5. Something fishy about that.

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  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    Replies
    1. If we don't play fair I'm not playing. It's your ball........

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    2. You're allowed to speak hour mind, Dave. It doesn't make you a bad person.

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    3. The comment that I deleted was that I was upset about being fined $5. for using 14 units of water instead of 13 a paltry allotment and a small fine so I was going to vote to abolish the UUT. But after reading what the wingnuts here have to say I changed my mind. I'm voting for a 10% UUT.

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    4. You are basing your vote on what you read in the comments section of a blog?

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    5. If you mean THIS blog, instead of the propaganda Press Releases from City Hall - why not?

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  10. The combination of the current Mayor and City Manager has been a bad one for this city. It is very poorly run right now.

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  11. The attached article said 6 people were penalized? Hard to believe it is that low, or is the City holding back? What is really going on?

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    1. The city is focused almost exclusively on raising taxes. Everything else is just falling apart.

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    2. "The city is focused almost exclusively on raising taxes" - correct but where is the money going? CALPERS ,salaries and benefits for staff. And their need for ever increasing taxes is voracious.
      "The Only Place in Town" you'll find much interest in caring for Sierra Madre is here on Tattler.

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    3. Lets take away the water fountains for people and dogs ,ticket tweener's for skateboard and scooter laws,or cut down an obviously diseased Carpenter Ant infested Oak this city will come together and foam at the mouth...questionable infrastructure,rank water,and inept officals ... As long as they or it doesn't affect you ,your children,or pets on a personal level you could care less .
      Sierra Madre you desearve your hell.

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    4. I'm not feeling the love, 9:35

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    5. 9:35 has not added to the conversation much. But maybe that is the point.

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    6. 9:35 This is not hell this is an idyllic small town with character and people who love it here. If you think this is hell I suggest you move to heaven.Things like water fountains for people and dogs matter here,ticketing children matter here,old Oaks matter here. Infrastructure needs repair in every older community,our water is greatly improved due to diligent officials,blame Jesus for the drought.
      What do you care about? Your teapac rantings,saving your precious pennies to be buried with? And possibly learn to use spell check you're no roll modle.

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    7. 10:22AM, you need spell check .... Last word in last sentence? Jesus caused the drought? Isn't God above him? Diligent officials solved our water problems? Reall? Pennies to be buried with? Teapac rantings? Wow, this is one of the strangest things I've read on here? Of course you car for water, dogs and oak trees. All of you would show up at CC if they taken away. But not so much for the CC lying, abusing, taxation or any other thing that matters.

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    8. Really 10:22 ?
      Idyllic ... Not so much .
      Tea Pac,don't assume because you know what they say about people that
      ASSume ...I'll help you by applying the first three letters to your post .
      The reality is that it's eye rolling me me I issues that matter here .
      When I stated the issue about a tree it was about one that was diseased and infested with Carpenter Ants .
      Do you know what Carpenter Ants do when they infest a diseased tree ... They eat it from the inside and end up killing the tree .
      FYI it's not my tree it's the city's large oak with its gnarled and dead branches caressing power ,telephone lines ,and a root system trying to survive by moving to leaking water pipes ... Why should infrastructure matter when it comes to your dog or loved one having a water fountain ... You do realize you can't have nirvana without a strong infrastructure .
      It's kind of like the city replacing dead trees with new ones while our city and state is under water restrictions ... Young unestablished trees need water.
      Guess what ?
      Once alive now dead oaks planted by the city and on whoms dime ?
      While you sit there believing in your imagined nirvana I hope you realize that your model ideal is being leached away by poor infrastructure and city government that is only vested in themselves and have no problem with enacting labor shut downs,fear mongering,and make wild accusations about nefarious political outsiders ... The only outsiders that criticized our little King and his syncophants was the Arcadia City Council member and the Mayor of Pasadena as I recall that was due to a police labor shut down problem and not an increase on utilities .
      Hmmmm ?
      P.S. modle is spelled model ... Model citizen.
      Hugs?

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  12. TAXATION has always been the issue. These guys are no roll modle.

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  13. Again, the mayor is allowed to insult people, Harabedian can do what he pleases, Elaine is responsible for nothing (I still can't get over the sight of her in a red Mercedes convertible), the city attorney is a baboon , simple laws are not enforced by the police, and so it goes. Rarely do people show up at CC meetings. In a sense, Sierra Madre deserves what it gets: a lot of people who don't know what's going on, don't care, have their own agendas, believe the mayor and Elaine. Too many of the "I,I,Me,Me" people.

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    1. "the city attorney is a baboon"
      Yeah, that makes sense.

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    2. How did a discussion a out the collapse of Sierra Madre's water company devolve to baboons? Is that how it happened? Primate management?

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    3. Primate commenters.

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    4. You're right 12:09, I apologize for the insult to the baboon.

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  14. Using City Hall logic, the reason why the city has not discussed pipe leaks and its effect on our overall water consumption number is that it is the actual reason. If it wasn't we would have heard a lot about it. The mysterious "Dirty 30" was just a diversion and that meeting never happened because there was nobody for them to call.

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  15. Here's something for you all to think about. There wil be a major recession just after the November Presidential election. This will be another great opportunity for city hall to increase more Taxation. What do you got to. Think about those apples! Detriot Michigan could be right around the corner.

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  16. Oh my, having to pay for salaries and benefits for staff, the thought of it drives me crazy.

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    1. You sure it isn't all that sunshine?

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    2. Might be all the bug bites.

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  17. its interesting that no one has mentioned the new 2016 red mercedez in city halls parking lot, have any idea who it belongs to?

    Oh my, having to pay for salaries and benefits for staff, the thought of it drives me crazy.

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    1. I for one don't care what kind of car the City Mgr. or any employee drives. Just stop.

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    2. What are you pushing these days?

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    3. A Ford. Made in USA by union labor. Hope your head doesn't explode.

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    4. Fords are made in Mexico and Canada

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    5. I used to see Bruce going home in a city car, Is that Mercedes furnished by the city?

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    6. It is private industry union labor. Which comes out to about $16 an hour. Not to be in anyway confused with the six figure compensations municipal employees pull down around here.

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    7. If you compare city hall union labor to Ford union labor, obviously the car guys do far better work.

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    8. Our water department is a Yugo.

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  18. City hall is living outside their means, and miss spending our money, does any one have a issue with that?

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  19. city halls water wells are dry, city hall sold residents mwd water containing lead, does any one have a problem with that?

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  20. Well, it must seem that every one must be happy!

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  21. 12.15 good reply - it must be from your city manager

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    1. Something about today's topic is driving the trolls crazy.

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    2. They've beem in the jimson weed again.

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  22. Must be the schoolyard name calling. Something about the comments being reduced to the civility party level that gets us trolls.

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    1. Going to have to start weeding them out again. Pity.

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  23. Bernie Sanders hit the nail on the head, the word is called FAIRNESS, and that word has no meaning at city hall

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  24. The Tattler gets a nice front page salute in this week's Sierra Madre Weekly. Not sure Chief G is going to like it, tho.

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  25. FAIRNESS..... Let's Make America Great Again, starting with Sierra Madre

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