Saturday, February 14, 2009

No Answer From Garrick on Water Shortage



In the face of a continuing drought, cutbacks in water supplies and calls for water conservation, the state continues mandating housing growth in San Diego County.

In October 2005, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill 1233 into law. That act established the state's right to mandate housing "need" based on anticipated population growth. That "need" is apportioned to the various county governments, who then assign portions to their respective cities, who must then find sites to build "dwelling units" on. How many dwelling units total for the county? We're supposed to add 107,301 between 2005 and 2010. And more in the years after that.

So today, San Diego County cities are struggling to accommodate the shares they've been saddled with by SANDAG, and at the same time are begging their residents to cut back on water usage.

And now the governor is telling us to "Conserve or else ..." (NCT, Aug. 19), calling for "the state to reduce per-person water consumption by 20 percent by the year 2020."

We're now facing water rate increases to help us reduce usage. And cities are doing their part to

So I asked my representatives in the Legislature ---- Assemblyman Martin Garrick and Sen. Mark Wyland ---- to answer this e-mail question: "Given the current and forecast water shortage in San Diego County, and given the requested cuts of up to 20 percent in its usage: Have you sponsored any legislation that would provide relief from the state's housing mandate that requires the addition of defined quantities of housing in the county's cities?"

Their answers? None, silence.

Elimination of the state mandate wouldn't stop housing growth in the area when the economy recovers. ... Cities would be free to grow as their residents desire.


We're being conditioned to use less water, not only during droughts, but routinely. And a major reason for that is growth.

If the state is going to continue mandating growth, they also need to find a massive source of water to support it ---- along with the capital needed to expand, repair and improve our infrastructure. And if SANDAG and our local governing bodies can't find the backbone to say "NO" to demanded growth, they should be forced to cut back their use of water and bathe once a week ---- in 4 inches of water. I'll supply the rubber duckies. What's next, sponge baths? More rationing?

It is a serious disservice to the residents of San Diego County to mandate growth in the face of a serious water shortage.

Blogger's note: In 2007 Barth, Houlihan, and Bonds voted against signing a contract with Poseidon for desal water production.


  1. Nice article, Kevin C. I agree that more growth is insane. Having grown up here, I can remember when there never were traffic jams on the freeway and you could leave for downtown from North County at any time of day and get there within 25 minutes. I also remember, before I-15 was built that many people advocated putting light rail down the center of the corridor. "Who would ride that?" was the general response. Guess it would be nice to have that now as a complement to the Coaster.

    As to the water, people could do a lot to save water. I see my neighbor's sprinklers running during the rain a lot. I have told him about it, and he tells me it is too much hassle to keep turning them on and off. People should buy front loading clothes washers -- you can get $150 rebate from most utilities. Plant the drought tolerant stuff. Unless you have little kids who might need a little patch of grass to chill on, kill your lawn and put in ground cover, some paths, and lots of shrubs and trees. For the surfers, skip the shower after your summer surfs, unless you have to go to work, and just enjoy being salty and sticky. Stop washing that BMW, no one cares.

  2. We have too many people in So CA. Now. I am all in favor of slow growth and let the free enterprise system work. A mandate to build cheap housing only make the areas slums.

    There are plenty of houses. I you want to live here pay the price or move to somewhere you can afford like Yuma.

    This communistic attitude is sick. Just because I want a house on the coast of Encinitas, does not mean I'm entitled to it. I have to earn money and buy it myself.

    PS- We live in a desert and have overused are rations.

    Pro development like these two losers, Stocks, Bonds, and Dalager area all just sell outs to the developers who spit the crappy boxes all over our state. America is really getting me sick lately, and CA is the worst.

    I have a better Idea that above. Instead of killing my lawn, I will work to vote out these pro-development losers.

  3. anon 555,

    Why bother doing all that stuff in paragraph two? The State, SANDAG, and the City are still increasing water demands. Conserved water doesn't go to long term savings it goes to developers.

  4. Barth, Houlihan, and Bond were correct to vote against signing on for the desal project in Carlsbad. Bond, in a rare moment of lucidity, stated that the cost of the purified water would not come in at the promised price. He also pointed out the cost of pumping this water produced at sea level to any other area in the county.

    These desal project have always promised more than they delivered. The Point Loma and Santa Barbara plants are good examples. Doofus Dalager claims advances in technology have solved the problems. Dalager is wrong as usual. In the reverse osmosis process it still takes tremendous amounts of energy to push the seawater through the semi-permeable membranes. The membranes clog and need to be periodically replaced at very high cost.

    The whole desal project might make sense if the plant were located in the mountains and the purified water could flow by gravity to the users. But that's not where the seawater is.

    At some point we need to face the reality of growth limitations. Growth can't go on forever. It's absurd that the state is mandating growth during a drought. Even after the drought breaks, we will still need a sensible policy of sustainability. Best to start now.

  5. Anonymous at 7:25 makes an excellent point. It's exactly why I will not be conserving water and won't be replacing my lawn with gravel and cactus.

    Let the developers do the conserving and xeriscaping.

  6. Well, Well, Well. The smart Feds decide to saddle our children for just more easy and fat living today. Check to the spending that will do nothing to change the economy.

    If they really thought they could change the direction by spending our future money without a negative reaction, why not make it a $5 trillion dollar bailout and just send each of us a $300,000 check in the mail.

    The money comes from two places and both are BAD for our future.

    1. DEBT- China buying more of our money and in turn, national assets. VERY bad for national security and future economy. Our kids and grandkids are screwed.

    2. Printing money- lowers the value of money and lowers the worth of those with Savings. Promotes inflation. Not good for many.

    Our Government leaders addicted to DEBT are Losers Killing our Countries future. Out of the two choices I hope they just keep printing more money like monopoly money. At least that way those who are just born aren’t saddled with huge debt. If fact, I am going to start preaching for the feds to triple the production of currency. That way the current debt will be worth only about 1/3. Screw all of us with saving. We should have learned to live within our means.

    I love my grandchildren and hate the debt spenders like Stocks, Bond, and Dalager who sell out our future for some big $100,000,000 regional Sports Complex which will cost over $1,000,000 a year to maintain.

    Are current politicians are Baby Boomer Losers!

  7. One of the things that I have noticed about my own home, since it is old. The water around here is so bad that the pipes have become corroded with lime. We have done what we can without a major overhaul, which we can't afford. So, we keep replacing things, so at least the water doesn't leak into the sink, bathtub, etc. Before the washers on the bathtub faucets were changed, we collected over 5 gallons of dripping water, which we then reused to water plants etc. You would be amazed at how much you can save putting a bucket in your shower. It doesn't really deal with the larger issue, but as the old saying goes,"Think globally, act locally," Speaking of acting locally, if anyone gets a chance, my Letter to the Editor is in this weeks Coast News. Anyone really interested in the local initiative process, please e-mail me. The address is: There is a way. However, I would rather keep any more about it off of this blog",, no offense to J.P. Too many City "leaders" read this wonderfrul blog.

  8. Anon7:50- well said!!

  9. Hi Dr. Lorri-

    I hope the Leuc, cardiff, and Olivenhain town councils contact to you get this citizens initiative rolling. It would really be a great thing for our City's future. Thank you so much for starting this effort!

    Good Karma coming your way!

  10. Thanks last poster. We can make this happen if enough people are wanting and willing to do it. I have requested from Calaware, information n what we need to do. So, if any people are interested in Term Limits on the Council, please e-mail me at: We can then figure out a way to form a citizens group and go for it, It does cost some money and time, but I think we can do it if enough are committed.

  11. the town councils don't do that sort of thing. Olivenhain town council holds bbqs, cardiff tc gardens, and ltc doesn't really do anything.

  12. Does anyone know what happened to Bob Nanninga. I noticed that his column has not been in the last 2 editions of Coast News, and he hasn't been involved in any civic activites for a while, that I know of. Has he moved, is he sick? Does anyone know. I am a little worried about him. Bob- if you are out there would you contact any of us that know you or post something? Please.


  14. I googled anything about Bob and can't find anything about what happened to Bob. Would you be so kind as to share more with us? I am so sorry, as I really liked Bob.


  16. Rest in peace, Bob. You will be greatly missed.

    They are beginning to leave comments about Bob's passing on his facebook page:

  17. There is NO water shortage!!! If there was, would Pacific Station be sending thousands of gallons of water into the storm drain every minute!!. All the water coming from a 2 inch pipe attached to the fire hydrant. Go by and check it out for yourself.

  18. there is no water shortage!

    Otherwise, would council be approving extensions to hundreds of new subdivisions and homes even though we don't have enough water for the existing ones?


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