Some San Clemente voters will be voting on candidates for South Coast Water District 3. Here are the candidate statements sent to the Orange County Registrar.
NAME: DICK DIETMEIER
Occupation: Retired Marine Officer
A reliable water supply continues to be a critical component of our daily life in this community. The last few years have challenged the idea that we have or can get all the water we would ever need. Increasingly we are being required to exercise additional judgment in the use of the water sources that meet our needs. You are both the user and the owner of the water district. How much you plan to use contributes to your costs.
If elected, I will continue to work for appropriate financial management, transparency of operational contracting and to sustain current levels of training and staff performance. My endeavors will support your future needs in water and waste water services. Your support is critical for strong leadership, fiscal management and continuing work in securing our future.
I have eight years of useful experience as a Director of this District and am in excellent health. Thank you for your support and interest.
NAME: RICHARD GARDNER
Occupation: Director, South Coast Water District
The water and wastewater business is very important to all of us in SoCal.
Although we do more to conserve and use less water, are bills are increasing. We can do more to provide cost efficient service to our customers. That is why I requested an organizational efficiency study that provided many ways to improve our service. This plan should be implemented.
As water shortages become real, we will need to transition to an allocation based rate structure like MNWD, IRWD and many other agencies. In this way families will be provided with the amount of water they will need for the number of residents and weather conditions not just an arbitrary tier pricing system.
The cost allocation for the South Coast Sewer Tunnel project should be discussed. The project costs, which may in exceed of $50 million, should be paid for by considering the benefits to each area of the district. Certainly the residents that are served directly by the tunnel, Monarch Beach residents, hotels, and south Laguna, should contribute more than areas whose waste cannot ever enter the tunnel.
I do not support ocean desal until it is environmentally acceptable and cost effective.
Thanks for your vote.
NAME: WAYNE RAYFIELD
Occupation: Director, South Coast Water District
Over the past 14 years I have worked on critical issues including ocean water quality, reliable and safe water delivery, water conservation, reducing our reliance on imported water and water education. Much has been accomplished but there is much more to be done. As a former business executive, Dana Point Mayor, Councilmember and current Board Member I believe I can continue to help South Coast Water District meet our future challenges.
Our District must: reduce our use of increasingly scarce and expensive imported water by continuing as an active partner in developing ocean desalination and other local water sources; continue to inform customers about why and how to conserve water; expand the use of recycled water; ensure the sewer tunnel is rehabilitated promptly to protect ocean water quality and our quality of life; ensure that every expense is necessary and cost-effective; provide a safe and reliable water supply with emphasis on
emergency preparedness; and, aggressively seek outside funding for District projects to reduce the financial burdens on you, the District’s customers and owners.
I welcome your suggestions and thoughts about the District.
Thank you for your vote.
NAME: GARY “WATER WATCH DOG” LANGDALE
Occupation: Retired Finance Manager
Let’s stop recycling the same old political faces and bring in some new blood with innovative new practical and affordable solutions to: Reduce the water/sewer rate increases bring real watchful and responsible oversight to the District stop the waste of your dollars on real estate development projects reduce general and administrative costs at the District, I acquired a unique and detailed understanding of water issues, especially financial. I participated in all board and committee meetings and, since my retirement, I’ve continued to follow the issues and frequently attend District meetings. I reorganized District staffing in the finance departments, streamlined the annual budget process, and reduced independent accounting and audit fees by over $250,000 annually. My performance evaluations praised me for my financial initiatives and changes resulting in multi-million dollar savings to the District. My community association elected me to its board six consecutive terms and I’ve been re-elected President for five consecutive years. Our project was featured by the Tri City Water Savers at their most recent water conservation forum.
Time for sensible and affordable change!
I’d be honored to earn your vote.
NAME: RICK ERKENEFF
Occupation: Dana Point Businessowner
Born in South Orange County, I’ve lived in Dana Point for over 40 years. Fortunate to raise my family in Lantern Village, I’m a graduate of Dana Hills High School and CSULB. Both daughters also attend Dana Hills.
I understand that water is a precious resource, and have been passionate about protecting it. For nearly a decade I’ve served as Chairman for Surfrider Foundation’s South OC Chapter, devoting thousands of hours in educating and promoting responsible water management.
Like many working families concerned about the cost of water for home and business. I am committed to keep our water rates and usage as low as possible
I believe we need to prioritize an aging infrastructure and develop cost-effective localized water solutions.
My difference is I’m not a “reclaimed” director of South Coast Water District. I’m nowhere near retirement and board compensation won’t be a primary source of income.
If you value fresh water, I hope you’ll vote for my fresh perspective on the issues facing our district for the next generation in local water management.
NAME: JOEL BISHOP
Occupation: Business Owner
Since I left the South Coast Water District Board six years ago, our water rates have increased 75%. Doheny State Beach has continually been rated as one of the filthiest beaches in the state. The threat of drought looms over us and the limited supply of water from the Colorado River is being stretched to its limit. It’s time to return strong leadership to the SCWD. It’s time to get back to the basics and right this ship. It’s time to reduce Director compensation and excessive perquisites. We need transparency and
candor from our elected leaders. It’s time to say no to the status quo.
Before serving the City of Dana Point as a Councilman and Mayor, I served for 10 years as a Director, and President of the SCWD. I have extensive experience in knowing what needs to be done and the best way to do it. We need to address critical issues like aging infrastructure. We need to provide additional sources of supply through claiming our groundwater and ocean
desalinization. We need to assure that we have zero tolerance for any sewer spills and that we do our share to make the oceans clean and vibrant.