||LACC Mutual Water Company
501 Peninsula Drive, Lake Almanor Peninsula, CA 96137
Office (530) 596-3282 Superintendent/Fax (530) 259-2161
|The following information is provided solely for members and potential members of the Lake Almanor Country Club Mutual Water Company, located in an area known as the Lake Almanor Peninsula, Plumas County, California, U.S.A. The information contained herein is believed to be accurate as of the above date. However, the Lake Almanor Country Club Mutual Water Company disclaims any liability or responsibility for inaccuracies contained herein or by virtue of changes which may have occurred subsequent to the preparation of this information.|
|The Corporation||The Management|
|Members Rights||The Water System|
1. THE CORPORATION. The Lake Almanor Country Club Mutual Water Company is a mutual nonprofit California corporation incorporated May 15, 1963 under the provisions of the Civil Code of the State of California, sections 330.24, et.seq. The company was organized to provide water for domestic, irrigation and fire protection purposes to shareholders (members). A member must be a property owner in the Lake Almanor Country Club, the Pines residential area, or the Peninsula Village commercial area, all located within an area known as the Lake Almanor Peninsula. This company does not come under the jurisdiction of the California Public Utilities Commission. The company has qualified for nonprofit status for federal and state income tax purposes and for county property tax purposes.
1.1. Shares. Each unit of property was qualified and 2,170 shares of common stock (one for each parcel) has been authorized by the state Department of Corporations. Since this is a mutual water company each member shares in the equity and the expenses. Shares are appurtenant to the property owned and cannot be sold separately. Nor can shares be combined should adjacent parcels be combined. Should a parcel be split the share may be provided to either parcel, but the share cannot be split. The remaining parcel will need to be qualified if membership and water is desired on that parcel. The qualification process takes time, is very expensive, and must be paid by the property owner.
2. THE MANAGEMENT. Five directors comprise the Board of Directors. These are volunteer directors that serve without compensation, normally for a three-year term. They are elected on a rotating basis by the members at a Shareholders' Annual Meeting held on the second Saturday in July of each year. Each director must be a member of the company and each also serves as an officer of the company. The officers are President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Chief-Engineer and they are elected annually by the directors. The Board of Directors establishes policy for the company. Board meetings are held at least quarterly and members are encouraged to attend. The company employs a General Manager, a Superintendent, and Water System Mechanics. The Water Company has an agreement with the Lake Almanor Country Club (a homeowner's association) to perform financial and many administrative services.
3. MEMBERS RIGHTS. Upon escrow closure and company issuance of a "Certificate of Membership" (share) the parcel owner becomes a member in this company. Each member in good standing has equal rights and has one vote for each share held at Annual Shareholders' Meeting. Also, each member in good standing is entitled to water service and to have a proportion of available water, subject to limitations that may be imposed by the board. There is a meter installation charge for new service connections.
4. THE WATER SYSTEM. The company operates under California Department of Health Services permit 32001, dated Jan. 8, 1996. The original water system was constructed in increments from about 1955 to 1984. The water is pumped from four deep wells. Each well has an electric driven pump having an individual accumulated pumping capacity of 2,730 gallons per minute. One of the wells also may be driven by a diesel engine in the event of a prolonged electric outage. Storage consists of three flat-bottom steel tanks with a combined capacity of 1,075,000 gallons. The above ground facilities are in excellent condition. The current pumping and storage capacity meet state standards to support the water company district when it is fully developed.
The distribution system has over 30 miles of water mains, 150 fire hydrants, 20 pressure regulating valves, 2 hydro-pneumatic tanks, with a potential of 2,070 service connections. Water pressure may vary from 25 psi to 125 psi depending on location and elevation in the system. If the water pressure exceeds 85 psi at any service connection it is recommended that the member install a pressure regulator to prevent damage to appliances.
4.1. Lateral Size. Each member is entitled to have a 1" service lateral at no additional charge which may be shared with an adjacent property owner. A member applying for a meter size larger than 1" may have a 2" lateral installed upon payment of an installation fee, which also may be shared with an adjacent property owner.
4.1.1. Meter Size. Each member is entitled to have a 5/8" x 3/4", a 1", a 1 1/2", or a 2" meter. However, this single meter may serve more than one parcel (share) if adjacent parcels are commonly owned. There shall be a state approved anti-back-flow device installed and maintained by the shareholder for a service larger than 1".
4.1.2. Consumption. When applying for larger than a 3/4" meter an engineering report shall be submitted detailing the estimated daily and peak water consumption, using the applicable section of the Uniform Plumbing Code. The current water company source and storage capacity limit the maximum peak day demand per connection, except for fire-flow conditions. Should any shareholder anticipate greater consumption than there may be an impact fee to upgrade the system, as determined by the Board of Directors.
4.1.3. Fire Suppression Systems. Individually owned fire suppression systems may be installed if the installation, maintenance, and water usage is paid for by the shareholder and such installations are metered. Lateral and meter size larger than 2" may be necessary for such an installation, but may be limited by the specific location in the system, as determined by the Board of Directors.
4.1.4. Fire Hydrants. Individual "yard" hydrants may be installed and shall meet water company standards, when so required by Plumas County and/or the Peninsula Fire Protection District, provided the installation and maintenance is paid by the shareholder, as determined by the Board of Directors.
4.2. Pipeline Problems. The distribution system has about 30 miles of water mains. Most of the original water mains were undersized steel pipe installed using substandard installation practices. Many of these pipes are now in dire need of replacement since they are corroding and approaching their maximum expected life. Because of this the board necessarily has to take planned action to replace pipeline in the system. Not having accumulated a capital reserve fund in earlier company years has resulted in high assessments, that are addressed later herein.
The practical effect of having undersized water mains is the inability to supply fire hydrants with adequate flow to meet Plumas County Code or the Uniform Fire Code and the inability to provide adequate domestic water during peak usage summer months. Additionally, there may be times during peak usage where water pressure may be lower then normal and at other times the pressure may be considerably higher than normal. The practical effect of pipeline corrosion is that the system is continually developing leaks, resulting in a high repair cost and a high cost to provide water (i.e., the electric cost to pump water that is lost through leakage).
5. WATER QUALITY. Each member receives an annual Water Quality Report. The water is very pure and soft and is tested weekly for bacteriological content and according to a state approved schedule for all other testing. No chemicals (e.g., chlorine or fluoride) are added to the water. However, to maintain the tanks and lines clean a small amount of chlorine is added in late June and December. The water may have a chlorine taste and smell for a short time during these periods.
6. FINANCIAL. The company operates on a fiscal year starting May 1st. The Board of Directors approve the budget and set rates, fees and assessments without hearings at each April board meeting. Each member receives a copy of the "Budget Summary" and may receive a copy of the "Rate and Fee Schedule" in May and a copy of the "Auditor's Report" in August. Access to financial books and records of the company are available upon request to the General Manager. Each member is legally obligated to pay these rates, fees and assessments even if they own unimproved property, do not use water, or refuse water service.
6.1 Base-Rate. Each member pays a "base-rate" for each share held. This rate pays the administration and the repair and maintenance costs to keep the company operating and able to provide water on demand. This rate also includes depreciation, which is used for capital replacement items. Company bylaws, which reflect state law, require unimproved property owners that do not use water to be charged this rate. This is considered to be a "standby" charge for future domestic water needs and water for fire protection when and if needed.
6.2 Capital Reserve Fund. The base-rate includes funding to maintain a capital reserve fund in the amount set by the board. The bylaws, which reflect state law, require that a reserve fund be maintained for emergency and capital expenditures. Unfortunately, during the earlier years of the company this was not done and this makes assessments necessary for pipeline replacement and to maintain the water system facilities and equipment.
6.3 Water Rates. Each member that receives water is billed for water used as determined by a meter. Meters are read in April and October. There is a minimum water usage fee. The water rate (Tier I) is established by determining the full cost of providing water (i.e., electricity for pumping, water testing and disinfecting, water system leakage, meter reading and administrative costs). As a conservation effort, an "excess" water charge applies if water usage exceeds 12,000 cubic feet (Tier II) per share during a semi-annual billing period
6.4 Assessment. Each member currently pays an annual assessment for pipeline replacement and making other capital improvements, in the amount set forth by the Board of Directors without a membership vote. Waiting until complete failure of any pipeline could lead to health and safety problems, very large assessments, and subject the company to legal problems. Therefore, the board is taking planned action over a long term (i.e., replacing about one mile of bad pipeline each year to keep the annual assessment as low as possible) in addition to doing other system improvements. These assessments are all required to be explained in the periodic newsletter sent to each member and to be done in full accordance with the Bylaws. These assessments will continue to be necessary until all of the pipeline becomes acceptable. Current plans call for the pipeline replacement to be completed in 2014.
6.5 Commercial Surcharge. In addition to all other rates and fees paid by members, effective August 1996 all business related property in the Peninsula Village will commence paying a commercial surcharge. Business-related property is defined as NOT being either: (1) a single or duplex family residence (even if rented or leased), or; (2) an improved parcel with no water service directly or indirectly. This surcharge is to repay a secured 60 month bank loan taken out by the water company to replace Village pipelines. The amount of this loan is the cost difference between the pipeline size needed to meet commercial fire flow standards verus the pipeline size for residential fire flow standards. . This surcharge is calculated annually by dividing the annual amortized amount of the bank loan by the actual number of shares having business related property, apportioned to the billing cycle for each share (rounded to next nearest dollar). This charge cannot be prepaid since it is subject to change each year until the bank loan is paid in full.
6.6 Commercial Capital Improvement Charge. If unimproved property in the Peninsula Village is converted, or single or duplex family residence property is changed, to business related use a commercial capital improvement charge, plus any service installation fee, shall be collected upon application for connection or upon conversion, as applicable. This charge shall be the amount of money which would have been paid by a business related property shareholder from commencement of the commercial surcharge (November 1996).
6.7 Billing. Each member receives a semi-annual bill for the rates, fees and assessments and are due on May 1st and November 1st. Should there be a specific problem with the bill that cannot be solved by the office the member may write a letter of appeal to the board. The appeal will be considered at the next scheduled board meeting.
6.8 Delinquent Accounts. Accounts become delinquent on June 1st and December 1st. Delinquent accounts first receive a "Reminder Notice" and then if still unpaid a "Final Notice of Delinquency". The bylaws provide that should any member permit a charge or penalty to become delinquent the member shall no longer be in good-standing. This means the member is not entitled to vote on company matters and is not entitled to receive water until the delinquency is satisfied, plus paying a reinstatement fee.
a. Prospective members may obtain copies of these documents from the property seller or by writing (or e-mail) to the water company office stating the property address of interest.
b. New members will receive a copy of above corporate documents (excluding meeting minutes) after escrow closure with the issuance of the Certificate of Membership in the company. The financial and water documents will be sent to each member as revised. A periodic newsletter will also be sent to each member.
c. Current members may request a copy of a document in writing (or by e-mail) to the water company office: