City of Santa Cruz water solutions committee staying the course

The fourteen (14) member Water Solutions Citizens Advisory (WSAC) Committee recently concluded its seventh round of monthly meetings. Originally formed by the Santa Cruz City Council in the wake of tabling the much discussed joint desalination project with Soquel Creek Water District, WSAC is moving into the “real deal” phase for their process. What does that mean?

Up to this point, the process has focused on education, research and analysis. In order for the group to achieve its ultimate purpose of “…developing water supply options to recommend to the City Council…” having a clear understanding of the City’s (and region’s) water supply issues, the past mistakes that have been made, and the implications for the future is critical to arriving at a point where consensus can be reached around solutions. Now, armed with a firm grasp of the past, present and future, the group will begin to seriously consider solutions to mitigate our supply problems and avoid missteps down the road.

Speaking of missteps, the City admitted that part of the reason for the establishment of WSAC was due to past shortcomings related to community outreach and education. WSAC has done an admirable job to this point in practicing a high degree of transparency. This is evident through the easy-to-navigate, comprehensive nature of their dedicated website:

Another important component of this emphasis on transparency and communication is WSAC’s continued outreach to community groups. On Wednesday, October 1st, WSAC members and City officials will sit down with SCCBC’s Government Affairs & Economic Development Committee to discuss progress and next steps. Outreach to other community groups is ongoing.

In the event that you (are) were not able to sit in on the City’s presentation to the GA/ED Committee, here is a link to the PowerPoint presentation.

Upcoming WSAC key dates

SCCBC’s representative on WSAC, Sid Slatter, will continue to provide updates. We thank him for his community service related to this matter.