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FPUD board ratifies emergency pipeline repairs on North Main Avenue and Acacia Lane

Joe Naiman

Village News Reporter

If emergency circumstances exist the Fallbrook Public Utility District general manager has the authority to approve contracts exceeding the $22,000 threshold, which requires FPUD board approval, although such contracts must be officially ratified at the next FPUD board meeting. FPUD general manager Jack Bebee made such an emergency declaration after multiple leaks occurred on North Main Avenue and Acacia Lane pipelines, and the FPUD board ratified the contract Bebee approved Monday, April 24.

The FPUD board vote was 5-0. The contract will repair approximately 300 feet of 6-inch water main on North Main Avenue and 1,000 feet of 6-inch water main on Acacia Lane. The estimated cost of the repairs is $600,000.

The state’s Public Contract Code authorizes special contracting procedures in an emergency situation. A public agency’s general manager is allowed to take immediate action to procure the necessary equipment, services and supplies, and the emergency action also eliminates the requirement to give notice for bids as well as the requirement for board approval. The general manager must report to the board with an update at each regularly scheduled meeting to determine that there is a need to continue the action. The pipeline leaks on North Main Avenue and Acacia Lane have resulted in emergency shutdowns.

A 5-0 FPUD board vote Monday, March 27, approved a list of three pre-qualified contractors who can perform on-call emergency pipeline repair if utilizing a contractor is preferable to using FPUD staff to perform the work. It allowed the repairs on the North Main Avenue and Acacia Lane pipelines to begin. The FPUD board’s review of the emergency action also gives the board the authority to terminate the emergency situation at the earliest possible date conditions warrant, although the April 24 board action continued the emergency declaration so that the failed pipelines can be replaced and full service to customers can be restored.

The North Main Avenue and Acacia Lane pipelines had already been planned for replacement during the upcoming year. Although the repairs were planned for the fiscal year 2023-2024 budget, which will be approved later this year, contractor procurement delays will defer some pipeline replacement expenditures budgeted for 2022-2023, so the funding for those projects will be used to cover the cost of the North Main Avenue and Acacia Lane repairs.

Joe Naiman can be reached by email at [email protected].


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