Montecito Sanitary District Latest

By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   September 20, 2018

At their meeting on September 17, the Montecito Sanitary District (MSD) Governing Board received a report from its Public Information Committee, which comprises board members Bob Williams and Jeff Kerns. The committee met on September 14 to discuss concerns regarding information that has been in the press and in paid ads that make it appear that Montecito Sanitary District has not been treating wastewater properly.

At Monday’s board meeting, MSD staff provided information demonstrating the compliance record of the District in fully treating the community’s wastewater. MSD board members report that the wastewater treatment plant is fully functioning and meeting all requirements of the State Water Board issued NPDES permit. Members of the community are invited to come and witness the treatment process and see the “before and after” of the treated water. 

Interested individuals should call (805) 969-4200 to schedule a personalized tour of the wastewater treatment plant. 

The board also heard a report regarding an arrangement for water reuse that is being successfully carried out in the Carmel area. Director Williams and general manager Diane Gabriel recently visited the treatment plant site of a water reuse project that is operated by the Carmel Area Wastewater District and funded by seven golf courses in the Pebble Beach area. The golf courses are irrigated solely with recycled water created through a treatment process similar to the pilot project that MSD is undertaking. Each 18-hole golf course in California uses an average of 200,000 gallons of water per day for irrigation. In Pebble Beach, the courses are required to use recycled water as mandated by the State and their local water agency. The golf courses are not allowed to use groundwater and drinking (potable) water to irrigate. 

When asked by Director Kerns if such an arrangement could work in Montecito to serve the two private golf courses, Birnam Wood and the Valley Club, Gabriel stated that it could be a viable option for the community. MSD staff and board members Williams and Walter Owens will attend the Strategic Planning Committee meeting on Thursday, September 20, at the Montecito Water District, where the MWD will receive an update on the recycled water feasibility study, which looked at 27 different options for the reuse of wastewater in the community. 


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