Goleta Valley Voice
July 2007

Letters to the Editor

Kudos for water board --

The Goleta Water Board members did the right thing at their most recent meeting. 

They changed their Water Code so that it now reflects what we voted for when we approved State Water in 1991.  We can thank directors Bertrando, DeWitt and Cunningham for voting to correct their Water Code, which is their operating manual.

 Their Water Code now reflects the fact that Goleta Water District customers want a permanent and reliable water supply.  We want protection from extreme variations in our natural water supply and reassurance regarding what has been called the 2006-07 “perfect storm” of drought, where Santa Barbara received only 7.13 inches of rain, or 42 percent of normal.

 Our vote for State Water included voting for the SAFE Water Ordinance, which created a Drought Buffer for us.  The Drought Buffer is what makes State Water reliable, because it requires storing State Water as our backup supply, to be used only during a drought.  In this way it was meant to avoid severe water shortages and rationing.

 State Water was never intended to foster growth, so the SAFE Ordinance limits growth to a maximum of 1 percent of the total supply of drinking water per year after several conditions have been met.  New water meters can only be issued after GWD has made specified annual storage contributions to the Drought Buffer in the basin below us, filling it to a level agreed to by the 1991 voters. 

During these uncertain times of global warming and lengthy drought cycles, residents naturally wonder whether our water supplies are reliable.  To reassure us, the Goleta Water District will hold a Workshop on the SAFE Water Ordinance, so that everyone can understand how it creates a safe and dependable long-term water supply for us. 

This workshop will be on Thursday, Aug. 30 in the evening.  Watch for further notices!

Ann Crosby
Santa Barbara