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Santa Fe Irrigation District General Manager Michael Bardin asks members of the Rancho Santa Fe Association to help get the message out to the community to reduce their water consumption by 25 percent. File photo
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Irrigation district honors William Hunter

RANCHO SANTA FE — The Santa Fe Irrigation District held a board of directors meeting on Dec. 19, which started by honoring the work of retiring Engineering Services Manager William G. “Bill” Hunter.

General Manager Albert. C. Lau commended Hunter for his service, and Director Marlene King recounted a time she saw him wearing a traditional Scottish kilt. Apparently not one for breaking tradition when it comes to wearing choice dress, Hunter came to the meeting wearing a tie depicting Santa Claus.

Hunter took to the presentation podium to accept his honors, saying that he was proud of having served the organization for a decade and citing the district’s fiscal decisions as a reason for his pride. The district gave him a small plaque for his service.

Hunter officially retired on Dec. 24 after a 30-year engineering career, 11 of which were spent at the Irrigation District.

Afterward, item four — a resolution to cast a district vote for the 2019 LAFCO Special Districts Advisory Committee — was struck from the agenda. Then board of directors President Michael T. Hogan left the meeting, necessitating that Marlene King be voted in as acting president for the meeting’s duration.

Kenneth Pun, the managing partner of the Pun Group, then took to the podium to describe his organization’s process of auditing the Irrigation District. A packet was made available detailing the findings of the Pun Group’s audit, the numbers being current up to June 30, 2019.

The audit found the total deferred outflows of resources at approximately $3.1 million, an operating loss of $473 thousand, an increase of $4 million in its net position, $2.5 million in net cash provided by operating activities and $2.74 million in net cash provided by noncapital financing activities, among other findings.

The board of directors also authorized several actions related to the construction of the fifth phase of its Automated Metering Program. The general manager was authorized to execute the construction contract for the Automated Metering Program Phase 5 with Aqua Metric — a water testing service in Riverside — finding said program project categorically exempt under the California Environmental Quality Act. The project was approved and the general manager was authorized to execute a purchase order with Armorcast Product Company for new meter box lids for the project.

The Automated Metering Program began in 2016 with the goal of replacing customers’ readers, which require manual readings, with automated meters that send readings hourly through wireless technology. Implementation of the $5.5 million project is spread out across six phases that began in fall 2016; Phase 5 is expected to begin in February 2020, and the project will end in summer 2021.

The board of directors also accepted the FY Comprehensive Annual Financial Report.

No date was listed on the agenda for the next board of directors meeting.