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I am not a politician. I’m a problem solver. I have proven time and again that I know how to work productively and cooperatively with those of all political views. My business background and long-time civic involvement have prepared me well to help the Sweetwater Authority meet its future water resource challenges, and insure that we have safe, reliable water for our community.

 

I know what’s at stake in helping keep your water clean, reliable and affordable. With me as your experienced Board representative, you can count on me to preserve, protect and produce these best results for our ratepayers.

- Josie Calderon-Scott

Review the Sweetwater Authority Strategic Plan FY 19 - 20 Annual Report

 LIST OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS AND PRIORITIES

The region's lowest water rates
  • A well-maintained water system provides safe, reliable and plentiful water for our  needs, now and in the future;

  • A Rate Stabilization Fund I led ensured water reliability and sufficient operating revenue. It  remains active, effectively freezing your water rates through 2021;

  • Proven system improvements – justified and well-researched – assure that all ratepayer dollars are well spent;

  • Insist on reasonable budget proposals from Management. If the budget goes beyond our means, make the cuts necessary for a balanced budget.

Long-term financial viability
  • Implementing best practices, operational efficiency and maximizing local water assets;

  • Executing a historic water transfer from Loveland to Sweetwater Reservoir after increased rainfall during an exceptionally wet winter saved $10.4 million by not purchasing expensive imported water from outside the region;

  • Using and continuing to explore solar and hydroelectric operations to substantially reduce large power costs; and

  • Maximizing the lifespan of existing facilities. Making operations efficient is a priority.

Water quality and reliability

  • High quality water meets or exceeds all federal, state and local regulatory standards;

  • A comprehensive and innovative system flushing program improved water quality in 2019-2020, saving 15 million gallons of water from being flushed to regional drain systems;

  • Maintaining 393 miles of pipelines, 33,000 water service connections, thousands of valves and fire hydrants, two dams, three treatment facilities, multiple groundwater wells, water storage tanks and booster stations isn’t a preference – it’s a requirement;

  • Sufficient and reliable water is a must for homes, schools, hospitals, businesses and fire suppression.

Critical infrastructure
  • Budget consideration and approval should assure funding to maintain infrastructure and explore alternatives to save on operating costs;

  • Protect Sweetwater Dam as our most important local water supply by making upgrades to keep us safe and meet State mandatory safety standards;

  • Use bond funding for major long-term, expensive projects to minimize current budget impacts while funding major capital projects such as water delivery and storage;

  • Integrate new technologies to improve water quality and delivery efficiency – balancing necessary expenditures with optimized existing operations

Environmental stewardship
  • Community partnerships with Chula Vista Elementary School District Hydro Station; Living Coast Discovery Center, Olivewood and The Water Conservation Gardens are key to supporting water conservation;

  • Collaborative efforts with the County of San Diego and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services led to rerouting riding and hiking trails at Sweetwater Reservoir to protect sensitive habitats while making good on our pledge to maintain access and make public recreation opportunities available for hikers, cyclists and equestrians;

  • The Sweetwater Reservoir Wetlands Habitat Recovery Project will improve the endangered least Bell’s vireo habitat while creating potential for additional water storage. The restored habitat will be managed long-term to maintain ecological and water quality benefits.

Customer Service, Engagement and Community Relations
  • Led the formation of the Authority’s first Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) in 2019 in order to assure community engagement and that CAC recommendations are listened to and respected;

  • Meeting with community individuals and groups proactively and reactively is a mutually beneficial way for all parties to learn from one another;

  • Partnerships with local elementary schools educates students about water and its conservation.

  • Communicate to ratepayers with updates on initiatives, projects and operations, Host interactive community meetings – responsive to District 5’s water needs

Preferential Purchasing Program
  • Led the FY 2019-20 initiative to modify our procurement policy creating a Preferential Purchasing Program for local and disadvantaged businesses, an especially important strategy in view of the COVID-19 pandemic;

  • Use local businesses to stimulate the economic recovery of ratepayer businesses.

  • Partnerships with the City of Chula Vista, and the City of National City to further populate the vendor database and outreach.

Leadership, Accountability and Transparency
  • Voters deserve to have informed and engaged Board members who attend ALL meetings and tackle difficult issues head-on

  • Restore transparency at all levels;

  • Prepare Board agendas with accuracy and transparency. The Board must conduct itself in light of that transparency.  Preparing memoranda in agenda items and in minutes for Board and Committee meetings helps guarantee the openness with which the Board and its management seek to do the public’s business in public.