Skip to main content

1/19/2024 Letter from the General Manager

Dear Cambrians,

As we wrapped up the first two Board meetings of the year, I wanted to take the time to reflect on the current climate of Staff and the Board. When I began the application process to become the General Manager of the CCSD, I had been watching Board meetings for the better part of a year to analyze some of the issues Cambria was facing. The atmosphere was tense at times, and Staff morale was low at times. Fast forward to January 2024; it is a vastly different atmosphere. The cooperation between Staff members has been enhanced, and Staff and Board transparency has improved. If you watch our Board meeting closely enough, you may even see a few smiles and chuckles as we enjoyably work towards effective and efficient governance. For that, I am proud to be a part of the new CCSD moving forward. 

We had a hectic week as we worked on closing the distance on some of our strategic planning goals. Our ad hoc committee met again as we inch closer to our final Water Reclamation Facility (WRF) project description draft. Additionally, Staff attended the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) meeting to answer any questions about our Municipal Services Review (MSR) and Sphere of Influence (SOI) study. Our last MSR was in 2014. 

MSRs are designed to equip LAFCO with relevant information and data necessary for the Commission to make informed decisions on SOIs. The CKH Act, however, gives LAFCO broad discretion in deciding how to conduct MSRs, including geographic focus, scope of study, and the identification of alternatives for improving public service efficiency, cost-effectiveness, accountability, and reliability. The purpose of an MSR, in general, is to provide a comprehensive inventory and analysis of the services offered by local municipalities, service areas, and special districts. An MSR evaluates the structure and operation of the local municipalities, service areas, and special districts and discusses possible areas for improvement and coordination. The MSR is intended to provide information and analysis to support an update on the sphere of influence.

LAFCO asked several questions from Staff about Cambria’s water issues and what steps we have initiated to investigate additional sustainable water sources. Staff responded to the commissioners with updates on our efforts to permanently permit the WRF, research on resolving the brine concentrate disposal issues, and the efforts of our Resources and Infrastructure ad hoc committee on long-term water storage solutions. Despite no imminent solutions to the water storage problem, we reiterated that the search for solutions will continue. Regarding Cambria Community Services District, there were no recommended changes to our SOI. 

The meeting closed with the commission thanking CCSD Staff for their attendance and our willingness to answer questions. Even so much so that they commented on their belief that the Staff was genuine and sincere in our desire to find permanent solutions to Cambria’s ongoing water issues. 

Administration & Finance Departments

Administration Office Hours

The Cambria Community Services District Administration Office is open Monday - Thursday and every other Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. or by appointment. The Administration Office is closed for lunch daily from 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. If you have questions or need to schedule an appointment, please get in touch with the Administration Office at 805-927-6223.

Administrative Technician II - Front Desk Recruitment

The Cambria Community Services District is currently accepting applications for the Administrative Technician II - Front Desk position. This recruitment is open until the needs of the District are met. To apply, please visit

Update on San Luis Obispo County Integrated Waste Management Authority Outreach & Education Efforts in Cambria

The IWMA education and outreach visits in Cambria are almost complete. IWMA revisited routes that were not finished last week, and they will visit a couple more routes next week. For more information, please visit

Facilities & Resources Department

To submit general inquiries, or to report any issues on the Fiscalini Ranch Preserve, public restrooms, Cambria Dog Park, or to schedule a meeting with Facilities and Resources Manager Aguirre, please submit your inquiries or concerns here:

EV Charging Station Relocation

On November 9, 2023, the Board of Directors approved the location of the new electric vehicle charging station. Thoma Electric is reviewing the building plans and submitting the final permit for construction to the County of San Luis Obispo. Thoma Electric submitted the project to SLO County for permitting. The staff is anticipating an installation date in the coming weeks.

East Ranch Restroom

On December 7, 2023, the Board of Directors approved the Intent to Serve Letter for the public bathroom facility at the East Fiscalini Ranch Park and approved a change to the Community Park Master Plan to allow the Board-approved water-serving restroom design. The project is in process at the planning level with the County.  The staff anticipates the resolution of all planning issues and SLO County's response by the end of January. Once the planning portion of the permit is completed, the prefabricated building will be ordered. The building and delivery lead time, as quoted by the vendor, is 240 days.

Cambria Skatepark

The Department of Parks and Recreation Office of Grants and Local Services contacted the District and indicated that Section 106 is required for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) application. District staff is currently in the process of completing the LWCF Program's Section 106 requirements. On January 4, 2024, the District staff submitted a Sacred Lands File & Native American Contacts List Request form to the Native American Heritage Commission. On January 19, 2024, the Native American Heritage Commission provided the District with a Native American contact list, and staff is in the process of contacting the Native American Tribes. 

Cambria Fire Department

Meet Fire Chief

On Monday, January 22, 2024, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Chief Burkey will work out of the Cambria Veterans' Memorial Hall again and would love to meet you and hear your thoughts on anything related to the Cambria Fire Department. 

Contact Fire Chief

To submit general inquiries or to schedule a meeting with Chief Burkey, please submit your inquiries or concerns here:

Firefighter EMT Internal Recruitment

The District is accepting applications for the Firefighter EMT position. This is an internal recruitment and closes on Thursday, February 1, 2024, at 5:00 p.m. 

Genasys Protect 

Know Your Zone magnets have arrived, and the Cambria Fire Department crews will hand out magnets to citizens when appropriate on calls, etc.  The public is encouraged to stop by the fire station to pick up a magnet or come to the "Meet the Fire Chief" on Monday, January 22, 2024, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Be prepared for the next natural disaster by KNOWING YOUR ZONE. Know Your Zone in 5 Easy Steps:

  1. Visit – type your address in the search bar or use your current address. 
  2. Click on the highlighted zone and locate the number listed in the zone description panel. 
  3. Write your zone down and place it somewhere easily accessible by everyone in your house. 
  4. Click on Subscribe to Alerts to stay updated in case of an emergency.
  5. Explore the information provided in your zone's description panel and bookmark any useful links provided. 

Cambrians are encouraged to download the Genasys Protect application on your smartphone, enter your address, and save your zone.  If you need more information, or if you are having trouble downloading the application or need assistance locating your Zone, please contact Fire Chief Burkey or come to the "Meet the Fire Chief" on Monday, January 22, 2024, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and we would be happy to assist you. 

May contain: advertisement and poster

Winter Storm Preparation

Mr. Aguirre ordered another load of sand this week for the 2021 Rodeo Grounds Road parking lot. Cambria residents can fill up sandbags at the Cambria Dog Park parking lot at 2021 Rodeo Grounds Road and Lampton Park at the corner of Lampton and Windsor. Bring your sandbags and a shovel. Tractors are not allowed to take sand from the district's sand locations. Sandbags are available at most local hardware stores but not at the Cambria Fire Department. For additional information about emergency preparedness in Cambria, click here.

Water & Wastewater Departments

Water Treatment Operator OIT, I or II Recruitment 

The Cambria Community Services District is accepting applications for the Water Treatment Operator OIT, I or II positions. This recruitment is open until the needs of the District are met. To apply, please visit

Coastal Development Permit (CDP)

The District’s consultant for the CDP project description has completed 95% of a draft and submitted it to the staff and Ad Hoc Committee for review.

Stuart Street Tank Construction

On January 11, 2024, the Board of Directors approved an Agreement for Consultant Services with MKN & Associates, Inc., for engineering design and bid/construction phase services to replace the Stuart Street Tanks. The contract has been executed, and work can now commence. Environmental reporting requirements are the tasks being initially addressed to expedite the awarding of EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) grant funds. An on-site meeting has been scheduled for February 1.

San Simeon Well 3

The contractor awarded the contract to perform the San Simeon Well 3 replacement has withdrawn due to the inability to meet contractual obligations. Utility staff sought proposals from other contractors and requested an updated proposal from the previous two contractors who submitted bids but were not awarded. One vendor has submitted an updated proposal, and another is working collaboratively with staff on pump design and installation specifications. 

Water Meters

Per CCSD Municipal Code 4.04.130, “It shall be the consumer's duty to keep the space around the water meter free from obstruction that would interfere with access to the same by the district employees. If the consumer fails to provide property access to the meter after twenty-four (24) hours’ notice, the district may perform the necessary work and shall charge the cost to the consumer”.

The District would like to refrain from pursuing action under the municipal code; as such, we appreciate your help keeping your meters free from obstruction.

January 11, 2024, Board Meeting Update 

For a more detailed Board meeting transcript, go to

Revised CCSD Standing Committee ApplicationAgreement for Consultant Services with MKN & Associates, Inc., for Engineering Design and Bid/Construction Phase Services for the Replacement of the Stuart Street TanksAd Hoc Committee Statuses 
  • General Manager Matthew McElhenie swore in Fire Chief Michael Burkey
  • Fire Chief Michael Burkey swore in Fire Captain Craig Brooks
  • The Board of Directors revised the Board and Standing Committee Bylaws and directed the Staff and District Counsel to review the Board and Standing Committee Bylaws
  • The Board of Directors revised the CCSD Standing Committee Application Form
  • The Board of Directors provided guidance to the staff regarding the CIP list
  • The Board of Directors approved an Agreement for Consultant Services with MKN & Associates, Inc., for Engineering Design and Bid/Construction Phase Services for the replacement of the Stuart Street Tanks.
  • The Board of Directors revised the Ad Hoc Committee Statuses

January 18, 2024, Board Meeting Update 

For a more detailed Board meeting transcript, go to

Response to Correspondence to the Board Policy Number: 1040.2Executed Resolution 01-2024Executed Resolution 02-2024
  • The Board of Directors adopted Resolution 01-2024, updating the assignment of banking powers for Cambria Community Services District 
  • The Board of Directors adopted Resolution 02-2024, authorizing a salary increase for the Management & Confidential Employees (MCE) Group and amended the CCSD salary schedule
  • The Board of Directors approved Board Policy 1040.2 Regarding Response to Correspondence to the Board 

Upcoming February Board Meeting Items (subject to change):

  • Receive community input for Strategic Plan strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis
  • Discussion regarding the 2024 Fire Hazard Fuel Reduction Program process and deadlines
  • Discussion Regarding Development of a Civil Administration Citation Program Violation of District Regulations
  • Receive and file the second quarter budget report for FY 2023/24
  • Discussion and consideration of annual updates to Board and Standing Committee Bylaws
  • Discussion and consideration of approval of the Zero Liquid Discharge Pilot Testing Program
  • Discussion and consideration of the adoption of Policy 1045 Legal Counsel and Auditor Policy
  • Discussion and consideration of proposed PROS Committee goals and objectives

CCSD Seeking Community Input for Strategic Plan

The CCSD Board of Directors would like to receive community input on key areas for the upcoming Strategic Plan workshop. Please visit to submit your input. The Board of Directors will utilize this public input in the development of the District’s Strategic Plan goals and objectives, which was last updated in the facilitated workshop on January 31, 2023. Feedback is anonymous and will be submitted to the Confidential Administrative Assistant, and a consolidated list will be forwarded to the Board for consideration. Please submit your feedback by February 8, 2024.

  1. The Board of Directors will hold a regular meeting on Thursday, February 8, 2024, at 1:00 p.m. at the Veterans' Memorial Hall located at 1000 Main Street Cambria, CA 93428, and via Zoom Webinar to receive community input for the Strategic Plan. 
  2. The Board of Directors will hold a special meeting on Monday, February 26, 2024, at 10:00 a.m. at the Veterans' Memorial Hall located at 1000 Main Street Cambria, CA 93428, and via Zoom Webinar to receive any additional community input for the Strategic Plan Workshop. Members of the public can submit written comments to the Confidential Administrative Assistant at
  3. The Board of Directors will hold an adjourned special meeting on Monday, March 4, 2024, at 9:00 a.m., at the Veterans' Memorial Hall located at 1000 Main Street Cambria, CA 93428, and via Zoom Webinar to facilitate a workshop to update the Cambria Community Services District's Strategic Plan and set a date for the next Strategic Planning workshop. Mr. Dick Clark will facilitate the workshop.

On Monday, January 22, 2024, from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (I have to cut this one a bit short due to a family commitment), I will work out of the Cambria Veterans' Memorial Hall. I would love to meet interested community members and hear your thoughts. We will provide coffee, snacks, and the ability to engage in dialogue about everything Cambria.

As always, I welcome your feedback and ideas. If you have any concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me or any of our management team.

Thank you again for your support; I am at your service. 

Matthew McElhenie

Join our mailing list