SACRAMENTO –Assemblyman Scott Wilk's, R-Santa Clarita, Assembly Bill 951, requiring the Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District (SCVSD) to hold its Board meetings within the boundaries of the district when policy decisions are being made relating to Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs), was signed by Governor Brown.
“This is a huge win for the ratepayers!” Wilk said. “No longer will citizens have to make a 90 minute trip to Whittier to give input to policy makers. The chloride mitigations required by the regional water board is projected to cost about $130 million. These monumental decisions on how to mitigate TMDLs deserve a robust debate and having those meetings here at home will ensure that. I believe the greater the transparency and public over-sight, the better the final decisions will be.”
TMDLs are compounds that the federal Clean Water Act states have detrimental health effects on humans and are required by federal law to be mitigated. The federal Clean Water Act lists nearly 300 compounds that have regulated levels, so this issue is not likely to be a one-off.
Currently the SCVSD holds their meetings in the city of Whittier, 50 miles from the community they have jurisdiction over. Naturally, this discouraged public testimony from ratepayers and hindered their ability to stay informed on issues directly affecting their home values and water rates.
AB 951 will provide the residents of the Santa Clarita Valley with better government as the Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District continues to address current and future TMDLs.
AB 951 takes effect on January 1, 2016.