Since the July Pine Cove Water District board meeting, Director Robert Hewitt and General Manager Jerry Holldber have been studying how the district might modify the proposed lease renewal for one of its Rocky Point tower customers.

Wednesday, the two shared their idea with the whole board, who embraced it unanimously.

“I think it’s a good deal,” commented Director Diana Eskew.

Initially, the proposed monthly rental for this year (fiscal 2014-15) would have been $1,477.36, about $70 more than last year, with 5-percent annual increases in the following years. In a June letter to the board, lessee Fred Parker, president of Comtronix, Inc. of Temecula, requested re-consideration of the annual rate because of a loss of customers.

Holldber and Hewitt recommended reducing this year’s charge to $1,300 per month with 3.5-percent annual increases. The result would save Comtronix more than $13,000 over the next five years.

The district could also use Comtronix to provide maintenance on its electronic communications equipment or help install new equipment as well as reprogram the district’s radios.

Comtronix hasn’t responded to the proposal yet, although Holldber has informally discussed it with Parker.

During August, Holldber reported that a unique problem occurred in one of the Rocky Point aeration plants. The firm that constructed the plant recommended replacing them rather than repairing the 16-year-old equipment. Two new aeration units will cost $8,000.

“This was unexpected and unplanned, but the funds can come out of the improvement fund,” he told the board. “The aeration units do everything we wanted and add better quality to good water.”

In water business, Holldber reported that July usage was about 3.7 million gallons, 120,000 gallons more than the July 2013 production of 3.6 million gallons.

“It’s a little more than last year and a little less than a couple of years ago,” he said and attributed the increase to construction projects.

While the ground-water level of the district’s monitoring well dropped 2 more feet in July to a depth of 114 feet, Holldber told the board that all the other wells were doing well. The monitor well’s depth has fallen 16 feet in the past year and a total of 37 feet since July 2012.

“The summer rains gave the wells a chance to recover; most are doing alright,” Holldber reported.

“They’re doing better than I would have expected without a snowpack,” commented Eskew.

Through July, the first seven months of the year, PCWD had used 18.9-million gallons compared to 18.8 million in 2012. PCWD usage has been gradually increasing since 2010, when 18-million gallons were produced in the same time period.