Just the facts, Mr. Nassif (August 23, 2015)

I am writing to respond to Mr. Nassif’s Aug. 10 commentary, Separating fact from fiction in Apple Valley. It is important to set the record straight on a couple of issues he has raised.

Mr. Nassif continues to perpetuate the false statement by Dennis Cron, the Assistant Town Manager when he said, If it’s information that Ranchos wants us to have, they will share it. If it’s not we get to go to court and demand it. On Dec. 1, 2014 Leigh Jordan, executive vice president of Apple Valley Ranchos Water Company, stated in two separate letters to Dennis Cron and the Town Council that he was disappointed and mystified by this statement since he has worked with the Town of Apple Valley for years.

Ranchos’ requests for a change on rates go before the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and are considered a legal proceeding with public testimony and evidence presented under oath from all parties along with CPUC decisions authorizing rate increases — and all are a matter of public record.

Mr. Nassif as well as any other citizen has full access to all testimony and evidence about Ranchos in a rate case.

Mr. Nassif goes on to claim that Ranchos cancelled the agreement for water delivery at James Woody Park. Ranchos and the Town entered into this agreement and it was approved by the CPUC on May 13, 2004.

Given the Town’s plan to acquire the Ranchos system, and the Town’s current and future intentions to pump their own water, the CPUC authorized terminating the agreement. Fact is, when the Town decided to pump its own water the agreement was considered no longer in the best interest of Ranchos’ customers and terminated.

Finally Mr. Nassif stated the Town hired an experienced, credentialed valuation expert to determine the fair market value of the water system.

Mr. Hayward of the Hayward Consulting Group must truly be experienced if he can determine the fair market value of the entire Ranchos system after seeing such a small portion of it. On Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015, I personally escorted Mr. Hayward to one reservoir/booster site, and four well sites. After about an hour I was told Mr. Hayward had seen enough.

It may be of interest to know Ranchos’ has 22 active wells, 11 reservoirs, and 18 booster pumps at eight sites in a system that has 450 miles of pipeline within a 50-square mile radius. That is akin to someone giving you a fair market value on an automobile after inspecting the radiator!

To use Mr. Nassif’s words, These are facts. Let’s stick to them.

— Jeff Kinnard is chief operator/production supervisor for the Apple Valley Ranchos Water Company.

Source: Daily Press