Zone 7 Meeting - March 15, 2023
MINUTES OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
ALAMEDA COUNTY FLOOD CONTROL AND WATER CONSERVATION DISTRICT
March 15, 2023
The following were present:
Directors: Dawn Benson
Angela Ramirez Holmes
Staff: Valerie Pryor, General Manager
Heath McMahon, Assistant General Manager - Engineering
Osborn Solitei, Treasurer/Assistant General Manager - Finance
Carol Mahoney, Government Relations Manager
Ken Minn, Groundwater Resources Manager
Colleen Winey, Associate Geologist
Donna Fabian, Executive Assistant
General Counsel: Rebecca Smith, Downey Brand
Item 1 - Call Zone 7 Water Agency Meeting to Order
President Palmer called the Regular Meeting of the Board of Directors to order at 7:17 p.m. Rebecca Smith, General Counsel, stated that pursuant to AB 2449, Director Laurene Green informed the agency that she needed to participate remotely due to the emergency circumstances exception. Director Green provided a brief summary of the reason she needed to participate remotely. The Board voted unanimously by a roll call vote of 6-0 to allow Director Green to participate remotely.
Item 2 - Closed Session
The Board went into Closed Session at 5:40 p.m. President Palmer arrived at 5:41 p.m. and Director Benson arrived at 5:44 p.m. The Board came out of Closed Session at 7:03 pm.
Item 3 -
Rebecca Smith, General Counsel stated that the Board completed its annual General Manager's review and they are very pleased with her performance. The Board will discuss and make decisions on her salary at a future meeting.
Item 4 -
President Palmer led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Item 5 -
All Directors were present.
Item 6 -
There was no public comment.
Item 7 -
Director Ramirez Holmes suggested a wording change on the minutes for February 1st. She wanted the minutes to reflect that the five interviews that were held for the new Director were based on applicants who received four or more votes.
Director Ramirez Holmes stated that Item 4 on the minutes of February 15th should have included the roll call vote of 7-0.
Director Ramirez Holmes made a motion to approve the minutes of February 1, 2023, as amended, and Director Benson seconded the motion. The minutes were approved as amended by a roll call vote of 7-0.
Director Ramirez Holmes made a motion to approve the minutes of February 2, 2023, and Director Benson seconded the motion. The minutes were approved by a roll call vote of 7-0.
Director Ramirez Holmes made a motion to approve the minutes of February 15, 2023, as amended, and Director Narum seconded the motion. The minutes were approved by a roll call vote of 7-0.
Item 8 -
Director Ramirez Holmes pulled Item 8a as there were too many zeros in the contract amount. The amount should read $100,000.
Director Narum moved to approve Items 8b through 8e and Director Ramirez Holmes seconded the motion. Items 8b through 8e were approved by a roll call vote of 7-0.
Director Ramirez Holmes moved to approve Item 8a as amended and Director Benson seconded the motion. Item 8a was approved by a roll call vote of 7-0.
Item 9 -
Osborn Solitei, Treasurer/Assistant General Manager - Finance, stated that in February 2021 the Board adopted funding of a Long-Term Pension Liability Policy. The Policy had two criteria for annual contributions to the trust fund. During the budget process in 2022, the board briefly discussed the item since criteria 2 was not met. The Board requested staff bring the Policy to the Finance Committee for review and amendment. At the February 21, 2023 Finance Committee Meeting, staff presented options to amend the policy and the Committee recommended adding a third criteria to provide flexibility in special circumstances when criteria 2 is not met.
The amendment to the Policy added language specifying Agency funds applicable to annual contributions, and added a third criteria, which specifies that in the event criteria 2 is not met, the Board may make a finding to override criteria 2 and contribute to the trust fund. Other changes are grammatical corrections and adding a history section.
Director Ramirez Holmes moved to approve the amendment to funding of the Long-Term Pension Liability Policy, and related policy changes. Director Green seconded the motion. The item passed by a roll call vote of 7-0.
Item 10 -
Carol Mahoney, Government Relations Manager, stated that the Legislative Framework is a guidance document for the board, staff, and the Legislative Committee as a way to present to the public plans that the Board has for any legislative actions and positions that Zone 7 may want to take in the future.
Ms. Mahoney added that the Legislative Committee reviewed the framework and made changes at the February 22, 2023, Legislative Committee Meeting, which were incorporated in the Revised Legislative Framework presented to the Board.
Director Benson moved to approve the Revised Legislative Framework, and Director Narum seconded the motion. The Revised Legislative Framework was adopted by a roll call vote of 7 0.
Item 11 -
President Palmer submitted a written report and stated she will have additional information to share from the ACWA meetings she attended at the next Board meeting. Director Ramirez Holmes stated that she will be attending the ACWA Legislative Symposium next week as well as a State Legislative Committee meeting. She added that the Los Vaqueros JPA will be doing some office visits and having meetings in Sacramento next week. Director Narum stated that she attended the Water Education Foundation's Water 101 Seminar. President Palmer added that the Alameda County Chapter of the Special District's Association is having its 20th annual dinner on March 20th. Director Green stated that she attended the ACWA Washington D.C. Conference and will submit a written report next month. Director Benson stated that she also attended the ACWA Washington D.C. Conference.
Item 12 -
There were no items for future agendas.
Item 13 -
Valerie Pryor, General Manager, highlighted some items from her General Manager's Report including the damage to flood protection facilities from the continuing storm events. She stated that there are over 250 locations that were damaged and about 50 were considered medium to high priority. Staff continue to assess the situation and assume there will be around $11 to $12 million worth of construction costs to fix the damage. She added that staff are trying to apply for FEMA and US Army Corps of Engineer funding.
Ms. Pryor added that there was an increase in water allocation from the state to 35%, and that staff anticipate lifting the drought emergency in the coming months. She also thanked the community for its water conservation over the last few years. Lastly, Ms. Pryor stated that Zone 7 was awarded the California Society of Municipal Finance Officers Operating Budget Excellence Award for its recently adopted two-year budget; the sixth year in a row the award was received.
Item 14 -
President Palmer adjourned the meeting at 7:53 p.m.