Sheep Creek Water Company Board Meeting Highlights

Tri-Community NewsPlus

The Sheep Creek Water Company held its latest board meeting on August 15, 2023, to discuss several items that affect the community’s water supply and management. The meeting covered various topics, from water production and usage disparities to well updates, the Water Master Plan progress, and more.
One of the significant highlights of the meeting was the discussion surrounding the noticeable difference between water production and usage, which stood at over 21%. This difference was attributed to extraneous circumstances, such as water line flushing activities and recent wildfires, which necessitated substantial water usage. The Board emphasized the need for precise monitoring to address this gap efficiently.
Well 14, the new well on Nielson Road near Beekely, is currently undergoing renovations and is undergoing testing and pumping, specific details about its capacity and performance were not available. The Board deliberated on the approval of four new water meters. All applications were confirmed to be paid in full, and discussions revolved around subdividing properties, new houses, and specific meter locations.
The Board also shared that the Company’s Master Plan update is on schedule and anticipated to be finalized by November. Plans are in place to present the updated plan to the community for their input, possibly in a forum scheduled for January or February. It is the Board’s desire to ensure that the plan accurately reflects the needs and concerns of Sheep Creek residents before its presentation at the annual meeting in May. The Board also reviewed their company goals for the upcoming year. Two proposed goals were related to compliance orders and the master plan. The motion was made to review these goals further in the next meeting to ensure accuracy and relevance.
The decision to use Robert’s Rules of Order during board meetings was reviewed. Prior to this decision, the Board had practiced a relaxed open discussion format. Motions must be made, seconded, and then discussed, and there is a process for postponing discussions or tabling motions. The committee addressed facilitating orderly discussions and decision-making during board meetings, ensuring a more structured approach to handling matters. As part of this decision, the Board Secretary will shift the meeting minutes format, moving from detailed transcription-style minutes and adopting Robert’s Rules of Order style. This change focuses on recording actions taken rather than opinions expressed. Those in attendance voiced disapproval of the shift as they felt it would need to give more details about what was discussed at the meetings.
Board Secretary Kellie Williams gave an update on the progress of upgrading billing software and enhancing the billing process for customers. Two potential solutions were presented, but the Board decided to explore more cost-effective options to present to shareholders for input. Additionally, preliminary discussions on the operating budget for the upcoming year have begun, with plans to finalize it by November.
During the open comments portion of the meeting, Board President Andy Zody addressed recent posts from a social media group page for Sheep Creek shareholders. His concern was the inaccurate facts presented in the posts and the Board’s lack of ability to respond due to being blocked from participating in the group. He singled out a recent post where the author notes that a presentation by an outside group regarding the potential sale of the Company was not on the agenda (a rescheduling of the meeting which was supposed to have happened the month prior) and which, in his eye, raises suspicion about an agenda item related to California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) negotiations to be discussed in closed session.
The author questioned the legitimacy of having closed-session negotiations with SWRCB unless, per the Open Meetings Act, the Board is considering “pending or potential litigation.” The post author then states, “They [Sheep Creek Water Company] may be trying to sneak this in under ‘matters relating to the formation of contracts with third parties,’ but the SWRCB is a government regulatory agency, not a third-party to form a contract with.” The SWRCB is the regulatory agency that issued a compliance order and a moratorium against Sheep Creek in 2018. The post then closes with the author stating, “This is clearly just another attempt to keep shareholders from knowing what is going on about important company issues that impact ALL shareholders and customers!”
Zody reiterated that the only two items that are factual about the post are that the Board is trying to work with the SWRCB to comply with the compliance order and that, should they still want to present, there may or may not be a presentation by Central State Water Resources regarding the potential sale of the Sheep Creek Water Company.
Becoming noticeably irritated, Zody began a tirade and berated the post’s author, who was in attendance at the meeting, saying the author “is out there flapping his little arms, trying to get your guys [the shareholders] excited. Well, I don’t know about that. I’d stay away from somebody like that. At least, that’s what I was always told to do. But usually, I put my fist through somebody’s face and get sent to the principal’s office.” At that point, he is interrupted by another shareholder in attendance who yells out, “That’s very rude! That’s very rude!” Zody interrupts in response, “It is rude, but this is factual, ma’am. Sheep Creek is a good company.”
Board President Zody then continued with open comments from both board members as shareholders. Shareholders raised important questions and concerns ranging from the classification of shares and water allotment reductions to water quality. It was also resolved that the Shareholder’s social media group administrator didn’t know that board members had previously been blocked from the site. The administrator in attendance at the meeting stated they would make sure board members had access.
The Board concluded the meeting with a brief closed session, returning to open session with a report on what happened during the closed session. Board President Zody then apologized to the post’s author for his outburst and said he would post a written apology on the Company’s website.

If You Liked This Article...

NewsPlus Weekly Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates In Your Inbox

News • Events • People • History • Plus

Established in 1998, Tri-Community NewsPlus provides Phelan, Pinon Hills & Wrightwood with local, trustworthy, verified news, events, and information at and in print with NewsPlus Monthly.

Air Quality Index

NewsPlus Weekly


Get The NewsPlus Weekly Newsletter, Every Thursday Afternoon

The week's news and upcoming events
in your inbox every Thursday afternoon from
Tri-Community NewsPlus.

e Newspaper

Read The Latest Print Edition Of
Tri-Community NewsPlus Monthly


Get NewsPlus Weekly emailed directly to your inbox. Stay current with what's happening in the Tri-Community with a summary of the weeks news and events..


Tri-Community NewsPlus

Sign-Up For NewsPlus Weekly In Your Inbox!


Well Done,
You Did It!

What’s Next?

Check your inbox for a confirmation email and click the button to complete your registration.  We do this to prevent spam from unwanted spam robots!