The Consolidated Irrigation District’s board of directors met at its Selma headquarters on Wednesday, November 14, 2018. The first portion of the meeting was the Central Kings GSA meeting. But that wasn’t the big story. The big story was the passage of yesterday’s 218 election. CID growers passed the election with 74 to 26 percent in favor of raising the assessment. After two failed attempts the board engaged Darcy Burke and Judy Zulfiqar of Watermark Associates helped to move the ball across the goal this time. The ladies gave a post mortem and found out CID’s email campaign had an incredibly high open rate and it turns out Director Earl Hudson is the most popular Consolidated ID character on Facebook. He appears lovable, at least from a distance.
Chairman Larry Cruff had opened the meeting at 1:00 pm and General Manager Phil Desatoff reported on an existing deal with Fresno Irrigation District. This is one of those Kings River things. There are matters such as recharge, canal location and involves fish. Kings River things get complicated. I don’t always understand the nuances nor do I have a solid grasp on milk pricing, raisin bargaining or quantum computing’s latent impact on artificial intelligence.
Next the board adopted the updated Upper Kings Basin Integrated Regional Water Management Plan. It’s a couple of inches thick, single spaced and double sided. I suspect the only two people in 30 miles of CID HQ to have actually read the document were Desatoff and attorney Lauren Layne.
Desatoff brought before the board there are three more task items needing to be approved so the firm of Provost & Pritchard Engineering can complete them for the SGMA coordination in the Kings River Sub Basin. The board approved understanding there will be a reimbursement from the DWR grant in the future. That was all on the agenda in open session.
However, having passed 218 provides options. One option is to go into debt by bonding since the pay off is guaranteed. That would put up a good chunk of change and the 218 victory allows for good terms to get better terms. The district needs to look at land and some orchard property near the Kings River just sold for more than $40,000 an acre. CID needs a couple of thousand acres for recharge. Desatoff will research some possible paths without tying the district down. The meeting went into closed session.
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ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2018 by Don A. Wright
CONSOLIDATED IRRIGATION DISTRICT – 2255 Chandler St, Selma, CA 93662 Telephone; 559/896-1660
CID covers 145,000 acres mostly in South Central Fresno County. Surface water supplies: Kings River CID is its own GSA
General Manager – Phil Desatoff, Attorney – Doug Jensen, Water Master – Walt Frost, Controller – Gail Hoffman
Board of Directors – President Larry Cruff, Thomas Benzler, Earl Hudson, Tony Lewis, Ray Moles