Received by the IHWD on 6/26/2012

Hi,

I’m emailing you to let you know that we have 4 people living in our house.

Could you please let me know how the water board gets put into office?  In the future I would think about how you operate.  On the flier that you sent out, the very first thing you say is “Although there is plenty of water in our wells,…”  Then you turn around and say, we are going to levy a bunch of restrictions and high price penalties on your water consumption.

Now that just doesn't make any sense to me.  I’d also like to know what these board members take is for being a board member is.  Is this just an incentive for them?  We already pay 5-10 times the price as somebody in Denver.  What gives?  Isn't enough, enough?

Again, we have 4 people living here.

 

                                                                                                                                                                       

Dear Customer,

Thank you for your e-mail and obvious concern for our Water District.  I share the same concerns.  I am one of the Board Members and will try to reply to your questions and comments

First of all, the board members of any government body are voted into office.  In our District's case, electors that live in or own property within the Indian Hills Water District vote every 2 years for candidates that are running for open Water Board seats.  If you have lived in the District for any length of time, I am sure you have voted for members of Both the Water Board and the Fire Board. As we are always looking for a resident willing to give some of his or her time to our valley, I would very much hope that you would apply for one of the open Board positions when the time comes.  Just send us your mailing address and we will get an application in the mail.
 
In regard to how we operate.  Maybe you know this already, but the District does not own any reservoirs nor is there any deep water aquifers in this area of Colorado that our 9 wells can get water from.  The only water source for the District's vertical wells is the water seeping through cracks in the granite. Most of the years, this is more than adequate.  There is no known method to tell when this seeping ground  water that our wells are depending on will diminish; and when it does, it happens very quickly.
 
That is why the Board decided that our Newsletter at the beginning of June (which you refer to) should indicate that there was an adequate water supply.  However, by the end of the 3rd week of June the well production was quickly dropping and becoming a significant concern. The water levels in our two 100,000 gallon water tanks were down more than 75%.  So the Board decided to initiate phase 1 of  water restrictions which asks for voluntary reductions in household water use, as well as asking not to do any out side watering. There are currently no restrictions on the amount of water used by a household. (However, the phase of the restriction can change quickly requiring the Board to further restrict household use as well as levy fines.) Hopefully this voluntary conservation effort being implemented by our users will suffice to get us through this abnormally dry period.  
 
This is how the Board decided to approach this problem.  I suppose we could just institute water restrictions at the first of June every year but we don't think that is wise nor would be very popular with residents.  And, if you have a better suggestion, please come to any one of our Board meetings the 3rd Thursday of each month at the fire station, or become a Board member, or send me your suggestions and I will bring them up at the next Board meeting.
 
As for the cost of our water, each 1,000 gallons of water the District distributes to customers costs the District $25.09 per 1,000 gallons (last calculated in 2009).  So for most of the District's customers who use 3,000 gallons or so, the District charges $38 while the cost of delivering this 3000 gallons is $75.27 or more.  Although I don't know what the water usage is for your family of 4, I would guess that the cost of the District getting the water to you is more than what you are paying.  (Some of this cost is offset by the property taxes we collect and also offset by the elevated rates for high water users.)
 
Although being a Board member is a voluntary position and I do have a regular job, I am always available at home in the evening or on weekends.  Please don't hesitate to call if you would like to discuss further or share ideas.  I have also copied the other Board members on this e-mail, you can write to any one of them if you would rather.  There names are listed on our web site.
 
Thank you for your concerns and I hope I have answered a few of them.
 
Carl Frank
Indian Hills Water Board