Agendas and Minutes

Ashland Water Advisory Ad-Hoc Committee (View All)

Ashland Water Advisory Ad-Hoc Committee Meeting

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Ashland Water Advisory Committee 
 October 24, 2017 

Williams called the meeting to order at 4:03 PM
Committee Members Present: Pat Acklin, Alex Amarotico, Joe Graf, Kate Jackson, Rich Miller, Don Morris,  Michael Morris (Council liaison), Donna Rhee, John Williams (chair)
Committee Members Absent: Lesley Adams, Darrell Boldt, Michael Morrison
Staff present: Paula Brown, Scott Fleury, Steve Walker, Kevin Caldwell, Julie Smitherman, Jessica Bain,Tara Kiewel
Staff absent:  Greg Hunter
Consultants: Jeff Ballard P.E. (RH2), Lisa Maddaus P.E. (Maddaus Water Management)
September 26, 2017
Committee Members Amarotico/Acklin m/s to approve minutes as.
All ayes. Minutes approved.
Brown updated the committee about the request for proposal (RFP) for the water treatment plant study that was going to be brought to this meeting. In lieu of an RFP Brown is working directly with RH2 to negotiate a proposal to bring to the committee in January or February with cost estimates.
Julie Smitherman, Water Conservation Specialist and Lisa Maddaus P.E., Maddaus Water Management presented a Water Efficiency Program review.  See attached presentation.
Brown asked for the reasoning behind sun setting the lawn replacement program. Smitherman explained that the community is being saturated and anyone interested in this program will have participated by 2020. The lawn replacement program is high cost for both the City and customers similar savings could be found from an irrigation conversion program.
Acklin questioned why the Hot Water on Demand measure did not make it into the B Category of programs to implement. Smitherman said this program had minimal savings.
Graf mentioned if we significantly reduce the amount of water going into the sewer what does that do to the amount of water going into Bear Creek.  Smitherman said we need to make sure we donít have any unintended consequences and we need to look at all sides. Morris added that if are taking less water out of the environment then there is more water in the streams.
Williams asked if the projected water demand scenarios included any growth projected for the City. Smitherman explained that there was .50 percent per year of growth calculated and based on a Demographer report from Jackson County.
Graf questioned the customer cost numbers for lawn replacement and Smitherman explained that the customer cost range is from $1,000 to $30,000 depending on the size and type of landscape. Brown asked if we had real customer costs for 2015-2016 lawn replacements and Smitherman said she does have those numbers.
Brown asked if there was any measure that we didnít select on that list that Maddaus would have recommended. Maddaus said that she would have looked at the customer water use reports and communication education. The trend is for utilities to share more information and analytics on how customers use water in order to make informed decisions on water usage. Maddaus also mentioned the water loss control is a measure she would have recommended. Brown mentioned that if anyone on the committee wants more information on any of the measures and programs that Smitherman could provide the information.
Williams asked which programs affect summer usage the most and mentioned the rain catchment program. Smitherman said this program is site specific and size of the tank will determine and drive how much water will be available for the landscape. Smitherman mentioned a grey water program could come in handy for watering trees.
Graf asked for clarification regarding the projected water demand scenarios and questioned the overall savings projections and Plan B may not be sufficient. Graf said if we assume due to climate we are going to see significantly lower input of water coming into our watershed or a decrease in storage of snow we will need to save more that this model shows. Smitherman said that we can adjust the model as needed. Maddaus explained that there is a difference between responding to climate change and frequency of flood and drought cycles and this is long rang infrastructure planning and we will also have a drought plan that will be on top of this. 
Brown mentioned that we had a drought and recession hitting at the same time and that our community responded really well and reduced water usage significantly to meet our goals. Brown believes the demand scenarios model is conservative. Smitherman explained that it is common for communities to see a rebound in water usage after a drought and recessions and asked for the Committees feedback regarding the demand scenario.
Miller felt it is a good case that is well thought out and adjustable and that our community is different and responds well. Williams said with the Cityís Climate Energy Action Plan (CEAP) goals we could probably justify going with the C plan. Williams also mentioned the City is making and effort to fireproof the town. Smitherman is attending the Wildfire Mitigation Committee meetings and partnering to make sure we are all on the same page.
Graf said he thinks the numbers are good for demand in this plan and said he is prepared that we may have to go to Plan C if supply is not meeting demand. Brown said we could put a note in that we should look at Plan C as a goal for the City.
Jackson asked about lower income households meeting the climate change goals we have set. Smitherman explained the toilet rebate program as well as the free show heads, faucet aerators, and moisture meters that we give away. This is a really good program, and we get reimbursed by Bonneville for. Brown mentioned that updates to plumbing codes will give savings. There is a measure in Program C for leak repair for low income. Maddaus said that most Communities are most successful when they implement 10-12 measures do and concentrate efforts.
Brown asked the Committee to look at the charge and if there was anything that needed to be changed.
Brown will be updating Council at the Nov. 6, 2017, Study Session and will go over the history and work of this
Committee. Brown told the Committee that the goal is to have the Water Master Plan completed in July and to have a decision on the water plant. The Committee would conclude in July because the charge will have been completed.
Brown thanked the Committee and for all of their work on behalf of the City.
Brown proposed that the Committee meet again in January. All agreed.
Next Committee meeting Jan. 23, 2018 4:00 pm
ADJOURNMENT5:45 PM         
Respectfully submitted,
Tara Kiewel
Public Works Administrative Assistant


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