Robert Krieger, president of the Fern Valley Water District Board of Directors for 2014. Photo by J.P. Crumrine
Robert Krieger, president of the Fern Valley Water District Board of Directors for 2014.
Photo by J.P. Crumrine

The Fern Valley Water District Board of Directors chose new officers for 2014. The next president is Robert Krieger, vice president this year.

The 2014 vice president is James Rees, who was secretary in 2013. Director Trisha Clark is the next secretary.

Both Krieger and Rees were re-elected to the board without opposition this year.

The board also voted to terminate its rebates for high-efficiency toilets. The district has already rebated $2,100 ($100 more than was budgeted) to customers this year.

“It’s the first year we’ve ever been close to the budget,” said Office Manager Jessica Priefer. “But we’re at the limit and only halfway through the fiscal year.”

Rees made the motion to terminate the program. Krieger questioned its value to the district. “For vacation homes, does it really save us any water?” he asked. The vote was unanimous, 4-0. Director Charles Wix was absent.

In other financial business, the board accepted the audit for fiscal year 2012-13, which ended June 30, 2013.

The board also accepted the demise of the San Jacinto Mountain Area Water Agency. The board had correspondence from the other two local water districts — Idyllwild and Pine Cove — indicating a lack of interest in continuing the agency.

“I’m a little surprised we did not take action on the agency. The three [water districts] could change the rules,” Krieger opined. “Now it’s going to die … with a joint powers we could have done anything we wanted if the three agencies had agreed.”

General Manager Steve Erler reported the repair of a 10 gallon-per-minute leak on Rim Rock Road. Since Erler had the staff investigate for leaks last month, he thought this was a new leak, which explains why it was discovered by a hiker.

The groundwater level of the district’s wells “for December show little change in most wells over the last month,” Erler told the board. “… well levels are zero to 5 feet lower compared to the same time as last year.”

As surface water flows diminish, FVWD relies more on its well supplies. In November, the wells supplied 75 percent of production, compared to 56 percent in October and just 11 percent in November 2012.

For the October billing, FVWD’s 2013 production was 33.2 million gallons, which is slightly more than 100,000 gallons greater than the same period in 2012; however, it is nearly 850,000 gallons less than the average since 2008.

Erler also announced that FVWD’s website is now operational. It can be found at Designed by Jim Crandall, the site provides the following information: rate structure, conservation, newsletters, financials, employee compensation, meetings, agendas and more.

J.P. Crumrine can be reached at [email protected]