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Water Treatment-Storage-Distribution

The Company’s source of water for public consumption and for irrigation purposes comes from groundwater under its service area.  The water is extracted through twelve well sites, seven of which are potable and 5 of which are designated for irrigation purposes only.  The irrigation wells serve the largest grove in the Company’s area, the commercial nursery and the Pauma Valley Country Club golf course itself. The potable wells are pumped into the delivery system and stored in the Company’s two steel reservoir tanks.

Treatment

Per the requirements of the California Department of Public Health, drinking water standards, we are required to conduct numerous bacteriological and chemical tests on each potable well.  The test results must be below the maximum contaminant level (“MCL”) before it is acceptable for placement into the distribution and storage system.  For disinfection, chlorine stations are permanently located at three well sites and are subject to Department of Environmental Health standards for hazardous materials.  Standard operating procedures are followed by the utility employees when handling the gaseous cylinders of chlorine.  Training and routine inspections are conducted to assure compliance.  The Company’s Risk Management Plan is reviewed annually and updated every five years.

Storage

Upon formation, the Company utilized an open reservoir but has since abandoned the site and replaced it with two welded steel water storage tanks.  The smaller tank was installed in 1966 and has a capacity of 172,000 gallons of water.  The larger tank was installed in 1978 and hold 1.5 million gallons of water.  Both tanks were set up with alarm systems in 1994 to alert the front gate dispatch on too high or too low water levels.  Automating the distribution and storage system is on the Capital Improvement projects list.

Exterior inspection of the tanks is conducted by the water staff monthly and interior inspections are conducted every three years to assess any deterioration of the steel structure.  Scuba divers video log the interior and provide a written report of the condition.  Department of Public Health also conducts periodic inspections and notes any rehabilitation needed.  The small tank was completely restored in 2010 at a cost of $82,000; the large tank is scheduled for similar restoration in winter of 2014/15.

Distribution

There are currently 322 shareholders with 393 meter connections served by the Company.  The infrastructure, most of which was constructed in the late 1960’s, is still in place today.  Several different types of pipe were used, such as vitrified clay, steel and PVC.  The diameter of pipes range from 4” up to 10”.  As leaks develop in the older pipes, the Company tries to replace sections to carry the distribution system many years into the future.

Infrastructure Service Charges on the monthly Company billing system help cover the cost of replacing older service meters as they wear out.  Routine maintenance and replacement of the water meters is another Capital Improvement project always under consideration.

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