Thursday, October 25, 2007

Drought Work Session

We'll be doing a bit of "liveblogging" coverage of the Commission drought work session. We've already dialed up the red carpet coverage pre-meeting coverage of Blake Aued dropping his note pad. Stay tuned for more excitement.

Finally starting up; Heidi apologizes for sitting with her back to the audience, apparently because of the large screen used for the work session.

Fun fact: We are now in what is called an exceptional drought, which means it's only expected to be this dry once every 100 years.

We're now apparently liveblogging JobTV. Oh wait, just kidding. And there it goes again. I guess that job in Monroe was more important than the three words I missed. Seriously, can I get a job managing the feeds for Channel 7? Cause this guy sucks. Also, that slide is giving me a headache.

Seems like the bottom line is that the steps taken so far are kinda working, and we'll probably be ok so long as we keep conserving like we've been doing and so long as it rains somewhere in the normal range the rest of the year and early next year. If not, we'll eventually have to take Step F, which apparently involves some mandatory reduction in usage. Violations will involve a 10 times rate for amounts over the limit, that plus a $1,000 surcharge for a second offense, and all of that plus a service disruption for a third offense.

No change in current drought conditions would place Step F as occurring on December 14, 2007. We would then have to start to use internal back-ups (Lake Chapman and the Loop 10 reservoir, which I didn't even know we had until tonight) on February 23, 2008 if things didn't improve before then.

However, it unfortunately sounds like a mandate from Sonny may force us to go to Step F sooner than that. We have to cut an additional 10%, even though we've already taken steps that other communities haven't taken. No good deed goes unpunished.

Maxwell is talking about paper plates and such. Now he's suggesting a 4-day work week. Cool!

Hoard makes the case for multi-year averages instead of a 12-month average in calculating the base from which a % must be reduced, suggesting that a 12-month average unfairly penalizes companies that have proactively taken steps to conserve in recent years. I don't disagree, except that it might drive up the amount of reduction that has to come from residential.

Girtz: "This is a great drought, and I thank you for it."

Guvmint low-flow showerheads for the poor, courtesy of fines against violators? That might work.

Ok, I've got to go eat and watch BC-VT. My civic engagement only goes so far. I'll refrain from ordering water.