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Why aren’t we paying attention to Water Board Agencies?

MONTEBELLO – Central Basin Municipal Water District handed out $2.7 million dollars of ratepayers money and nobody noticed.  It appears the most the average resident knows about water is you turn on the faucet and it comes out.  We are facing a water crisis where cities are being forced to truck in water since our local water sources are contaminated from fracking.  Behind the scenes, water board agencies members are elected officials and award lucrative contracts to fellow elected officials without the scrutiny our city council members receive.  Here’s a fun game, can you name the water board member, elected to serve your agency?  Better yet, do you know where your water even comes from?

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West Basin Municipal Water District regularly awards contracts, to organizations, who fail to deliver on contract deliverables, but continue to renew the annual contracts.  West Basin also has a program that hires former and current elected officials to gather signatures in support of their Water Reliability 2020 project, being paid upwards of $200/hour.  Normal signature gatherers receive $1 per name.

It has now come to light that $2.7 million was wired out of the coffers of the Central Basin Municipal Water District (CBMWD) accounts, without the publics knowledge?

KPCC ran an article What happened to the $2.7m in the Central Basin Water District’s trust fund? which documents how ratepayers money vanished like a fart in the wind, for a project the CBMWD didn’t want the public to know about.

Related Material: Tracing Central Basin’s trust fund

A review of CBMWD agendas and minutes show there was no public discussion and/or vote to authorize the transfer of the funds, over three separate transactions.  Instead they left under the guise of “legal fees”.

An FBI agent carries out a box as he leaves the Capitol office of State Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, in Sacramento, Calif., Tuesday, June 4, 2013. Search warrants were served about at Calderon's office and the office of the Legislature's Latino caucus, around 3 p.m., but would not disclose the reason for the investigation. Calderon was not present during the search.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

An FBI agent carries out a box as he leaves the Capitol office of State Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, in Sacramento, Calif., Tuesday, June 4, 2013. Search warrants were served about at Calderon’s office and the office of the Legislature’s Latino caucus, around 3 p.m., but would not disclose the reason for the investigation. Calderon was not present during the search.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Also mentioned in the mess is Tom Calderon, brother of Ron.  We can recall recent headlines that screamed about the FBI raid on the offices of the Latino caucus and Senator Ron Calderon.  CBMWD board member, Leticia Vasquez (who brought the missing $2.7 million to light), has been under investigation by the LA County DA’s office since May of this year.  Noticeably, the entire Central Basin Municipal Water District board is Latino.

Related Article: Office Of California State Senator, Latino Legislative Caucus Raided By FBI

 

 


2 Responses so far.

  1. Jason Gardea-Stinnett says:

    Great coverage 2UG! Below is a link to one of two videos posted on youtube that highlights a few of the many problems facing the agency and limiting its ability to serve the public.
    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=zg4qg-e2MhA&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dzg4qg-e2MhA

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