Supervisor Adams supported pulling County Counsel into this to look at some of the alternatives. He didn’t want to split the Board and suggested if there was not a consensus they shouldn’t move forward. Adams felt badly for residents and the current council who had nothing to do with what happened, but added that didn’t make it a County issue. He suggested the City hire someone to do a full evaluation of what they have been doing the last 10 years, adding this was well beyond their capability.
Supervisor LeBlanc reminded the Board that quite a few years ago, two councilmembers decided to take it over and do it themselves. Now those councilmembers are gone and City doesn’t know what they are doing. He figured the County would have to take it back, or teach them how to do it. LeBlanc stated the City was not in good shape, just lost a council member, lost their water and maintenance employees. He said Loyalton is still a part of Sierra County who had been doing it for years. LeBlanc didn’t think it would be that much of a burden to take it back. He reiterated the City doesn’t have a clue on what they are doing.
Supervisor Sharon Dryden agreed with Adams on this item, adding she didn’t feel they had a full consensus of the Board. Adams felt it was best for the City to talk to their internal council and maybe pull in an expert from out of the area, adding the City does have to make some choices. He stressed having the upmost respect for Mayor Jackson and what she is trying to do, but has a quagmire and not of her own making. Adams said the City is within Sierra County but are legally separate from the County adding, “They drive their own ship. We can’t drive it for them.”
No action was taken.
PROPOSED GRANT FOR FUNDING the consolidation analysis for water systems within the community of Sierra City was discussed at the Board of Supervisors’ meeting held in Downieville, Tuesday, September 7th. Planning Director Tim Beals stated there had been considerable concern of updating with the water purveyors and had not met since COVID. A meeting was finally held on August 25th. He reported they only had one water system they couldn’t get hold of but the other 16 were there. Two parties called in virtually and all others were present. Beals stated the meeting was very productive. Steve Watson Lassen District Engineer from the State Water Board was present and reported to the water purveyors that grant funding was available and management had authorized the County to be the applicant. Beals said everyone supported the concept of the consolidation study except one. The one who did not felt uncomfortable speaking for the party that wasn’t present. Everyone attending was well informed and agreed that this should happen. There was a consistent concern that the greater community needed to look at this issue. He stated 16 systems, were all in states of disrepair with not a lot of maintenance and management support, adding it was a definite need that needs to be looked at. Once they have the report then decisions can be made. It was emphasized, that this was not an effort by the County to be the water purveyor of Sierra City. Beals stated the two issues that needed approval weere the Board’s willingness to support the application for funding and authorize the Public Works department to proceed with discharge of the grant and preparation of the report. Supervisor Sharon Dryden asked how much of it was grant funded. Beals thought the grant was 100% funded by the State. A consensus was given by the Board to allow Beals to move forward.