When people move to Idyllwild, Pine Cove, Fern Valley or environs, one of the first questions they ask is, “Why are there three water districts?” I mean, this isn’t a metropolis of cities with their own city councils and mayors to run water districts, etc. These are very tiny neighborhoods. A FVWD neighborhood can abut an IWD neighborhood and an IWD neighborhood can abut a PCWD neighborhood.

In Big Cedar Glen, some residents are in IWD and some are in PCWD.

Besides the water districts and the local fire department, our lowest level of government is way down in Riverside, the heart of Riverside County.

So Monday night, when Pine Cove residents came down hard on a consolidation committee formed by Idyllwild Water District to study goals of getting the three water districts to at least work together, I thought that was unfair.

They like to list all the problems of which IWD is burdened, i.e. not purchasing Paul Black’s wells, not using the water study plan like PCWD did to find new wells, putting sewer in Foster Lake.

The bad decisions IWD has made in the past are not caused by the current board.

What PCWD has is a better general manager. But believe me, the PCWD directors could not make the decisions Jerry Holldber has made over the years to provide great water to the people of Pine Cove.

Read 1973 in this week’s “Past Tense” on page A9. Then PCWD Manager Tom Wick blamed “pounding” water pipes on a “rinky-dink water system.”

So, current PC residents jumping on the current IWD board for past decisions is like saying those in Pine Cove with a “rinky-dink water system” are opposed to consolidation.

IWD has had a series of bad to relatively poor general managers. The only fault of the board in that case is hiring them. General managers are the ones who make the management decisions, like Jerry. The board can’t make those decisions.

PC customers who claim IWD wants to steal their radio tower money is like Trump saying the Mexicans are trying to take over the 2020 presidential election by sending people over the border.

Most of PCWD customers have no idea what Jerry and his staff do day-to-day. So, when they come to meetings arguing against consolidation, they’re masking objective thinking with personal issues.

Jerry is getting older. He won’t be around forever.

And when he isn’t, PCWD directors could make a bad decision and hire a Tom Lynch Jr. Then PC may be back to a “rinky-dink water system” and re-thinking their personal views about consolidation.

And, as to savings of not paying for three GMs and three office staff if a merger does take place, that doesn’t necessarily mean water rates and/or taxes will go down.

If Nebraska merged with Kansas, would that happen? It’s another thought, not a personal opinion.

I agree with Marge Muir that we need to put the past in the past and move forward. We also need to look to the future and not dwell in the present when it concerns both water and fire in our community.

After all, geographically, it’s all the same watershed.

Becky Clark, Editor


  1. Collective watershed makes sense right? Not if one is a water pig, abuser, and poisonous contaminents injector into the water supply. Recent contamination by IWD was on purpose that’s right on purpose knowing full well their actions would inject poison into the pipes. They just didn’t count on that much. People all of a sudden are upset
    But IWD has been doing it for decades. They just got caught this time. They’ve had the money to fix this problem and many others but their perspective has been if the customers don’t know or complain then they don’t have to fix it.

    David Hunt a board member just said he’s for consolidation so they can take pine cove water. All the recent folk upset about the poison in the water said iwd should take pine cove and fern valley water too.

    The only ones to blame here are iwd customers, period. They elected their leaders.

    I don’t want these stupid ignorant customers controlling my water through the same ballot box that made their mess.

  2. Water quality is priceless. Who really thinks Flint Michigan fixed their poisonous water district trihalomethanes included? Keep away Iwd and your screwed up ways of producing water ! You really don’t need to help me, really! I’m perfectly happy with my water quality.

  3. The moral character of Les Gin, Charles Schelly, David Hunt, Peter Szabadi and their manager Jack Hoagland has been damaged here. They knew what they were doing. They repeatedly bought excessive amounts of chlorine. They should have asked why. But more important not only were they told early on what would happen if excessive disinfectants were injected into the pipes, they authorized it. Its up to iwd voters to recall these pigs.

  4. PCWD water quality is not for sale at the ballot box. IWD hires substandard part time employees for less pay. Yes they’re cheaper and so is their water quality poisons injected too. There’s plenty of big water districts making crappy decisions producing cheaper substandard water. It’s not about cost savings. It’s about drinking high quality water.

  5. Make no mistake about it, we know IWD is a water pig but they’re also a money hoarder. With $5,000,000.00 in the bank, and $1.27 mil in revenue with massive neglected, broken, and substandard infrastructure IWD is a special districts abuser.

    Jon Coupal of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association says “many of these agencies are hoarding vast quantities of cash. The large reserves are often in amounts that are in multiples of a district’s annual budget and not justified by serious plans for major capital investment with a realistic timeline for construction.” Its not about who has the most cash in the bank, pays their employees the cheapest, and who produces the most and cheapest water.

    Its about who has the best water quality, best infrastructure, and most qualified employees.

    IWD needs to fix their problems and not deliver them to PCWD and FVWD customers.
    IWD customers pick board members who will fix your infrastructure instead of playing smoke and mirrors games.

  6. Again idiots at the helm of IWD. PCWD pays the smallest salary conditioned by years of service and qualifications. They offer a decent retirement and benefits. .iwd says they have the cheapest salary and cheapest benefits yet they can’t retain competent employees. Stupid stupid stupid.

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