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11/10/2023 Letter from the General Manager

Dear Cambrians, 

On Veterans Day, we honor and express our deepest gratitude to the brave men and women who have served and sacrificed for the sake of our nation. Their courage, dedication, and selflessness embody the true spirit of patriotism.

Today, let us pause to reflect on the extraordinary contributions of our veterans, acknowledging the hardships they've faced and the challenges they've overcome in the name of freedom. Their commitment to duty, honor, and country inspires us all.

As we enjoy the freedoms they have defended, let us remember our responsibility to preserve the values that make our nation great. May we never forget the sacrifices our veterans and their families made and always strive to create a world that reflects the ideals they fought valiantly to protect.

To all veterans, we extend our heartfelt thanks. Your service has made a lasting impact, and your legacy will forever be etched in the fabric of our nation. Happy Veterans Day!

Now, with that said, you will have to excuse my bias. Today is also the 248th birthday of the world's finest fighting force, the United States Marine Corps. The United States Marine Corps celebrates its birthday on November 10th each year. This date commemorates the establishment of the Marine Corps in 1775 at Tun Tavern in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, by the Continental Congress.

Happy birthday, Marines!! Semper Fi!!

Administration & Finance Departments

District staff created a page on the website for current contracts, agreements, and grants. The link is

Future Solar Projects

District staff has met with two vendors to discuss future solar projects.

San Luis Obispo County Integrated Waste Management Authority

The General Manager, Administrative Department Manager, and Confidential Administrative Assistant met with Ivonne Diaz and Michael Williams of San Luis Obispo County Integrated Waste Management Authority (IWMA) to discuss a strategy to help the District through the previous round of the Local Assistance Grant process directly from CalRecycle and to assist with reporting.

In the coming weeks, the IWMA will be performing education and outreach visits in some Cambria neighborhoods. For more information, please review the letter below or visit:

SLO County Integrated Waste Management Authority Education & Outreach Visits Letter

Grant Writing Services

The District met with three grant writers to explore the possibility of receiving grant consulting services to support the District's ongoing initiatives and community development projects and selected Elijah Mermin to provide grant writing services. As a senior grant professional with 19 years of experience for nonprofit organizations and government agencies, he is well-equipped to help CCSD identify and qualify appropriate funding opportunities and work closely with our staff to develop competitive grant applications.

District Policy & Fee Schedule Updates

Municipal Resource Group, LLC is working with staff to update the Payment & Compensation Plan for the Management & Confidential Employees Group. The Payment & Compensation Plan has yet to be updated since 2000, yet staff had updated drafts in 2019 and 2021. However, it was never implemented.

The General Manager, Administrative Department Manager, and Confidential Administrative Assistant are working with Liebert, Cassidy, and Whitmore (LCW) on updating the District's Personnel Policies, Procedures, and Rules, which haven't been updated since 1987.

The General Manager, Administrative Department Manager, and Confidential Administrative Assistant are working with Bartle Wells & Associates to update the District's fee schedule, which has not been updated since 2013.

Information Technology

The General Manager and Confidential Administrative Assistant are working with CIO Solutions to design a SharePoint site and move file shares from the CCSD server to SharePoint. CIO Solutions will also be upgrading  Office 365 licensing to business premium.

Peak Agenda Management 

The General Manager and Confidential Administrative Assistant are working with Granicus on finalizing the Peak Agenda management portal. Staff training will begin this month.

Records Retention Schedule Update

Gladwell Governmental Services is meeting with each department to review the proposed changes and obtain additional changes for the records retention update. Gladwell Governmental Services will update the records retention schedules for all District departments and prepare a detailed index of the schedules for Board approval.

Administration Office Closures

The CCSD administration office will be closed on Friday, November 10, 2023, for CCSD staff's standard day off and Monday, November 13, 2023, in observance of Veterans Day. Please contact the CCSD's 24-hour main line at (805) 927-6223 for all Water and Wastewater emergency services. The office will reopen on Tuesday, November 14, 2023, at 9:00 a.m. 

The CCSD administration office will also be closed on Wednesday, November 22, 2023, through Friday, November 24, 2023, in observance of Thanksgiving. Please contact the CCSD's 24-hour main line at (805) 927-6223 for all Water and Wastewater emergency services. The office will reopen on Monday, November 27, 2023, at 9:00 a.m. 

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 feel free to contact the Administration Office at 805-927-6223.

Facilities & Resources Department

Contact Facilities & Resources 

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 September 14, 2023, the Board of Directors approved a Public Works Agreement with Thoma Electric to relocate the electric vehicle charging station at the Veterans' Hall and adopted Resolution 51-2023 for a budget adjustment. On October 16, 2023, CCSD staff held a kickoff meeting with Thoma Electric, and Thoma Electric informed the District of the necessary explicit specifications and requirements for an ADA-compliant parking space. An accessible parking space is required for this project as per grant compliance conditions. Two critical conditions of the specifications for ADA-compliant parking space are that the slope of the accessible parking space cannot have a slope greater than 2.08%, and the ADA space should be on the right-hand side. With these critical constraints accounted for, only one area of the Veterans Hall parking lot satisfied all specifications. On November 9, 2023, the Board of Directors approved the new electric vehicle charging station location below. Work will commence soon.

May contain: architecture, building, hotel, car, transportation, vehicle, city, outdoors, and shelter

Fiscalini Ranch

Staff has been working on the trails with Brian Morgan and volunteers. We have helped supply the wood chips needed for trail work to prepare for the winter and wet weather.

District Facilities

Staff are working with an electrician on updating the public restroom exterior lighting. Staff are working on the F&R building, installing insulation and sheetrock, and repairing the roof. They installed new radiant boxes at several locations and have taken over our Pest Management program.

Cambria Fire Department

11/10/2023 Vegetation Fire - Monte Cristo Place and Highway 1

Cambria Fire Department responded to a vegetation fire that broke out near Monte Cristo Place and Highway 1 this afternoon around 1:56 p.m. Interim Fire Chief Burkey was on scene and reported that forward progress of the fire has been stopped. The fire was held to 2 acres.

Meet Interim Fire Chief

On Thursday, November 2, 2023, Interim Fire Chief Burkey held his first "Meet the Interim Fire Chief." On Tuesday, December 19, 2023, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Interim Fire 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 Interim Fire Chief

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

Genasys Protect (Zonehaven) and Emergency Alert System

The Cambria Fire Department and its public safety partners are excited to announce the implementation of Zonehaven, which aims to prepare residents and businesses for emergencies or evacuations before an event occurs. Zonehaven works by breaking the entire community into Zones, and each zone has a corresponding number on the map. A resident only needs to know their Zone identification number for evacuation and repopulation purposes. The Zone number and clear evacuation instructions will be provided during an emergency. Zonehaven will provide traffic in real-time, identify where possible evacuation centers will be located, and use the latest emergency information provided by incident commanders on the scene as the emergency event unfolds. Be prepared for the next natural disaster by KNOWING YOUR ZONE. It is easy to locate your Zone by visiting Genasys Protect's (Zonehaven) webpage. Cambrians are encouraged to download the Genasys Protect application on their smartphone, enter their address,  save their zone, and subscribe to Nixle alerts. 

More information will be provided as we continue to roll out this exciting new program for Cambria. If you need more information, please visit or if you are having trouble downloading the Genasys application or need assistance locating your Zone, don't hesitate to get in touch with Interim Fire Chief Burkey or come to the "Meet the Interim Fire Chief" on Tuesday, December 19, 2023 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., and we would be happy to assist you. 

Weed Abatement

We have less than 15 lots remaining, some in conservation easements. Most hazard lots have been abated, and we are now working on our forested areas. Fire crews have been working to complete inspections, and we are working on mitigation for the remaining lots. F&R is working on the Camborne trail and Fern Canyon in conjunction with Dylan Theobald, who is the Monitoring Program Manager for the San Luis Obispo County Land Conservancy.

Water & Wastewater Departments

SR4 Well at Coast Union High School

The District has continued its efforts to negotiate with the Coast Unified School District (CUSD) for long-term access/rights to the SR4 well and easements. Staff met with the CUSD Superintendent on school grounds to discuss their most recent Board discussion of a ten-year or 99-year term at 26k annually and creating a new easement access road. Those discussions are ongoing. 

Cambria Skatepark

Staff has a tentative meeting scheduled with our consultant for mid-November to follow up on any updates or new requests from County Planning. Our CCSD consultant reviewed current permitting conditions with SLO County Public Works, who agrees that no additional sidewalks should extend beyond the utility vault. No amendment to plans or other engineering will be necessary. We have scheduled a follow-up in January 2024 on our waiver request. 

East Ranch Restroom

This project is currently in the planning stage of the construction permit process. Utilities staff are addressing submittal comments from the County of San Luis Obispo Planners and are in preparation for resubmittal.

Proposals are currently being received for the Cultural Resources Assessment. Cultural resources relate only to remains and sites associated with human activities and include the following:

  • Prehistoric and ethnohistoric Native American archaeological sites.
  • Historic archaeological sites.
  • Historic buildings.
  • Elements or areas of the natural landscape that have traditional cultural significance.

It has been determined that there is already a Biological Monitoring Plan in place for this project.

On November 16, 2023, the Board of Directors will discuss and consider approval of a deed restriction to be to be recorded on the title of the Fiscalini Ranch as a condition of receiving grant funding from the California Drought, Water, Parks, Climate, Coastal Protection, and Outdoor Access for All of 2018 Parks Bond Act, formally consider approving the issuance of an Intent to Serve letter to allow the restroom to receive potable water from the CCSD's water system, and consider approval of a change to the Community Park Master Plan to allow water-serving restroom designs.

Staff anticipates resolving all planning issues and SLO County Planning response by January 2024 and anticipates ground-breaking by July 1, 2024. The vendor has a 240-day lead time (this is a prefabricated restroom that is yet to be constructed) to deliver the restroom facility.

East-West Village Transmission Line Replacement

On Thursday, October 19th, at 4:00 p.m., water service was restored to Mechanics Bank, and pressure testing and bacteriological testing were performed for the new installation. The transmission replacement line, new valving, and a new fire service to the Cambria Galleria were installed. All repairs and road surface repairs have been completed.  

On November 9, 2023, the Board of Directors adopted Resolution 58-2023, terminating the emergency work under emergency contracts to repair the East-West Village Transmission Line project. Utilities staff are awaiting final invoice submission before issuing a Notice of Completion and finalizing this project. 

Coastal Development Permit

The staff has awarded WRF CDP consulting to SWCA Environmental Consultants. SWCA is a consulting firm that, since 1981, has performed comprehensive environmental planning, regulatory compliance, and natural and cultural management services both locally and globally. SWCA will help the District update our WRF project description and work with our regulators to ensure its completeness. On October 17th, utility staff hosted our consultant for a site visit of the WRF and to discuss the history and status of the project. The visit included CCSD service wells 9P2 & 9P7, the future Zero Liquid Discharge site, and the evaporation pond. Our consultant will review the CCSD's CEQA and EIR documents and develop the new project description. Staff has scheduled a meeting with County Planning to discuss the intended approach and confirm their support. A key focus being developed by our consultant for the CDP is the restoration of the Title 27 pond to mitigate temporal losses since its implementation.

Utilities staff met with our consultant on November 3rd, who stated that they would have a table summarizing metrics involving the application, i.e., the info hold, TAC concerns, IFS, and AMP development, next week.  Staff is also internally reviewing info hold questions and preparing a completion matrix to present to the County staff. Utilities staff and consultants have a follow-up meeting scheduled with SLO County Planning on December 13th, where they intend to deliver project components and completion matrix for evaluation.

Stuart Street Tank Construction  

We are currently in the environmental permitting process. Staff has prepared the scope of work to be released for the informal bidding process for the design/build tank replacements. The environmental permitting tasks are a bit more costly than similar projects due to their location in the Coastal Zone and the need to perform CEQA and NEPA analyses as required when funded by a federal grant. The tanks are also located in a Geological Study Area, which increases permitting complexity.

San Simeon Water Line & Effluent Line Well Field Transmission Lines

Staff held its second status update meeting with consultants on October 24th. Phase A (the first of seven project phases) has been completed, and we are working through Phase B. A hydraulic feasibility analysis is now being evaluated. Phase C will begin the environmental review and analysis process. 11% completion of engineering has been performed with 8% of budget being utilized as of 10/31/2023.

Instream Flow Study (IFS) & Adaptive Management Plan (AMP)

CCSD utility staff and Biologist Kevin Merk assembled for an informal meeting to discuss upcoming AMP and IFS work. Biologist Merk will be assuming the environmental and biological reporting for the District, replacing long-time District biologist Cindy Cleveland. Merk led the environmental and biological reporting for Morro Bay's Wastewater Treatment Plant project and developed beneficial contacts with the EPA while obtaining their permits for its operation. We hope to use his experience with the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA). WIFIA Grant communication for the EPA to acquire funding for the District's environmental endeavors. 

IFS consultant biologists visited the creek in June while it was flowing, went through the watershed, looked at the habitat, collected photos. Currently, our consultant is reviewing groundwater reports to see how they concern Warren Wells and Van Gordon Creek and putting together a comment matrix for all comments addressing all concerns. Our consultant is in the process of making IFS revisions promptly for the district's review.

We look forward to creative discussions concerning topics such as habitat restoration of the Title 27 pond and WRF mitigation. A progress meeting with our consultants took place on Monday, October 30.

Zero Liquid Discharge Program

The Department of Energy has approved Global Water Innovations (GWI) tasks and timelines, the final step needed for grant clearance. GWI is now working on a final, detailed budget and believes they will begin building the mobile pilot unit at the beginning of November as soon as the budget is approved. They anticipate a meeting with CCSD immediately thereafter to discuss details of the pilot, formalize the legal agreement and obtain Board approval.

Van Gordon Creek Streambed Repairs

An update on the emergency work performed in the Van Gordon Creek streambed was completed on September 20, 2023. Our emergency application was submitted, accepted, and finished as of October 24th, with the receipt of the Van Gordon Creek Vegetation Management Report. This concludes our emergency/seasonal work in the streambed.

Water Meter Replacement Program

The initial pilot program has been slowed due to delays in the receipt of materials. We are researching other options for moving the project forward. 

Water Distribution

Billing cycle meter reads began at the close of October. Over 2,000 residential meters are being read manually by water staff.

5500 Heath Lane WWTP Road Surface Upgrades

Staff has completed the contract for grading and repaving Heath Lane and raising surfaces to the correct height. The staff has contracted services for a much-needed upgrade before the wet season.

Status of the Wastewater SST Project

Mrs. Dodson created a Wastewater SST Project information page on the website. It is available here:

November 9, 2023, Board Meeting Update 

For a more detailed Board meeting transcript, go to

  • The Board of Directors received a presentation from the San Luis Obispo County Emergency Services Coordinator for Genasys Protect (Zonehaven).
  • The Board of Directors approved the Ad Hoc Committee Report for Long-Term Water Supply and Storage Alternatives.
  • The Board of Directors adopted Resolution 58-2023, terminating the emergency work under emergency contracts for repair of the East-West Village Transmission Line project.
  • The Board of Directors selected Keith Hinrichsen to fill the Finance Committee vacant position created by Aimee Wyatt's resignation. Mr. Hinrichsen will serve the remainder of the respective term, which expires on February 1, 2025.
  • The Board of Directors approved the Intent to Serve letter for the public bathroom facility at the proposed Cambria Skatepark.
  • The Board of Directors approved the new location for the electric vehicle charging station at the Veterans' Hall. 
  • The Board of Directors approved authorizing San Luis Obispo County Integrated Waste Management Authority ("IWMA") to submit a JPA application for the SB 1383 Local Assistance Grant Program, act as the lead agency on behalf of the Cambria Community Services District, and authorized the General Manager to submit a letter of authorization.

November 9, 2023, Board Meeting Documents

County Wide Evacuation Plan for Genasys Protect (Zonehaven) Letter of Authorization to San Luis Obispo County Integrated Waste Management Authority to Submit a JPA Application for the SB 1383 Local Assistance Grant ProgramCCSD Long-Term Water Supply and Storage Alternatives Resolution 58-2023 Terminating Work Under Emergency Contracts to Repair the East-West Village Transmission Line Failure (pending district counsel's signature)

Upcoming December Board Meeting Items (subject to change):

  • Election of Officers
  • Discussion and consideration of Standing Committee chair and liaison appointments
  • Establish the 2024 Board regular meeting schedule
  • Discussion and consideration of update of the Capital Improvement Project (CIP) Lists
  • Discussion and consideration of use of CCSD open space parcels
  • Discussion and consideration to approve a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the Regional Biosolids Cooperative
  • Discussion and consideration to approve an Agreement for Consultant Services with CSG
    Consultants for fire plan & review services
  • Discussion and consideration of Ad Hoc Committee Report for brine waste disposal
  • Discussion and consideration to approve an agreement to the second amended and restated JPA agreement of the Integrated Waste Management authority and adopt a resolution (On 10/31, the County Board of Supervisors voted to rejoin the IWMA through a Joinder Agreement. This agreement fundamentally addresses two issues. 1) It allows the County to rejoin the JPA with one seat and one vote on the IWMA Board.  2) It allows the IWMA Board to move the election of its officers to the beginning of the year. This agreement provides a pathway for the County to rejoin the IWMA with a single seat and a single vote on the IWMA Board. IWMA is asking that CCSD place approving the Joinder Agreement on an agenda for the CCSD board’s approval so that they may bring the county back into the IWMA. Once the member jurisdictions have approved the Joinder Agreement and the county is officially a member of the IWMA, IWMA will transition the county back into the IWMA and realize the full benefit of a regional agency.
  • Discussion and consideration to approve the updated Budget Policy
  • Discussion and consideration of Policy 1040.2 Regarding Response to Correspondence to the Board, CCSD Operating Principles Policy 4005, Policy 1045 Legal Counsel and Auditor Policy, and Elimination of Policy B-02-2018
  • Discussion and consideration of a recommendation to approve an Agreement for the Contractor
    Services for replacing the San Simeon Well 3 pump
  • Discussion regarding the 2024 Fire Hazard Fuel Reduction Program process and deadline

On Tuesday, December 19, 2023, from 8:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., 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

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