Also serving the communities of De Luz, Rainbow, Camp Pendleton, Pala and Pauma

RMWD says developments require more land to proceed

The Rainbow Municipal Water District (RMWD) board of directors discussed the potential purchase of three different properties with the district’s legal counsel during the closed session of their Feb. 23 meeting.

According to district general manager Dave Seymour, the three agenda items listed pertained to the negotiation of one easement and two property purchases needed for district pipeline and pump station construction.

While the Brown Act allows RMWD privacy to discuss the negotiations in closed session in order to protect its bottom line, Seymour was able to discuss the need for the various properties. “One of the purchases is for the expansion of a sewage lift station on Old River Road,” said Seymour. “We need about a third of an acre. The existing station is rated to pump one million gallons per day, and it needs to be increased to accommodate flow of up to 1.5 million gallons per day in order to meet our ultimate flow.”

According to Seymour, the plan to expand the station at Old River Road has been in the works “for about a decade,” and was finally approved to move forward by the board of directors last year. The lots being considered are located at 30465 and 30516 Old River Road in Bonsall.

“We have completed most of the design work and are to the point we need to acquire the land for construction,” said Seymour. “Funding for the expansion of the station and land purchase will come from our capital improvement reserve that was set aside for sewer projects. The majority of the sewer reserve funds came from the sale of sewer permits to customers or developers who want to connect to the sewer system. We hope to begin construction in the fall of this year.”

The sewage lift station will take about nine months to complete, and would be done in the summer to fall of 2011, said Seymour.

The other two real estate items are associated with bringing the uncovered drinking water storage reservoirs into compliance with current water quality regulations.

“The District has been working on trying to meet the requirement since the 1980s, but it is a very costly endeavor and we are a small district with limited funding,” said Seymour. “We had four uncovered reservoirs and last November we completed work on covering North Reservoir and are now working on Northside Reservoir.”

The RMWD board of directors is planning to start on Morro Reservoir later this year, and is looking into either covering the Beck Reservoir or utilizing ultra violet disinfection for water in the reservoir.

The potential real property purchase being considered by the RMWD board is for land adjacent to Beck Reservoir is located at 4355 Citrus Drive in Fallbrook.

“If we construct a UV plant we will need land for the buildings and equipment,” explained Seymour. “We are in the very preliminary planning stages for facility design but we need to see if the property is available so we know how to proceed.”

Funding for the Beck project, including the property, would come from a combination of water rates, capacity charges and other user fees.

“This would be similar to what Fallbrook Public Utility District did at Red Mountain,” said Seymour. “We hope to select a method and begin design later this year.”

A construction schedule has yet to be created for the Beck Reservoir project.

The potential easement the district is considering is for the drain line from the Morro Reservoir, which would be located on 1541 Sleeping Indian, Oceanside.

“We are in the design phase of adding a floating cover to the reservoir, and part of the work includes modifying the drain line,” said Seymour. “In order to make it work correctly we need to acquire an easement across about 100 feet of property where we would construct a headwall and flapper valve to control water flow.”

Funding for the Morro project is already in place and will come from the district’s capital improvement reserve that was set aside for water projects. The Morro Reservoir modifications will take about a year, and will be completed by fall 2011 if it is begun in fall 2010.

“The majority of the water reserve funds came from water rates,” said Seymour.

While there are no homes on the land the district would like to purchase, there is a home on a portion of the property the district wishes to obtain an easement on.

“But it is away from the area we want to use and won’t impact the house,” said Seymour. “We won’t affect the use of the property.”

The RMWD board will be free to discuss the details of the real estate investments once decisions have been finalized.

“Once we complete the transactions we would have to announce the deal points in open session,” said Seymour.

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