There is one surefire way to wipe out what remains of the small, quaint town of Los Olivos we know and love: build a super sewer site and an expandable open-air treatment plant on a large parcel beyond our township’s boundaries.

The Los Olivos Community Services District (LOCSD), formed in 2018, was tasked with devising a local solution to our community’s long-standing groundwater quality problem.

Unfortunately, the LOCSD is running out of time. If the board cannot devise a reasonable and cost-effective solution the town will approve by April 2023, the county and state will be free to take over.

Unbeknownst to many, on top of permanently being on the hook for the cost of building, operating, maintaining, and repairing sewer lines and a sewage treatment plant, Los Olivos property owners will bear the costs of connecting their individual parcels to the sewer system.

We must not be naïve. With access to sewer service, the agricultural lands surrounding our small townships can easily be re-zoned to provide for more growth of the type that engulfed Orange County and the San Fernando Valley.

With no local representation or government, our community has no protection from changes to zoning laws. No one on SBC Board of Supervisors lives in Los Olivos, and it only takes three votes to rezone ag land. Also, we know that developers donate to campaigns and influence our elected officials.

My suggestions to the board are:

·  Go small. Return to the original plan: a compact system, similar to Mattei’s Tavern’s project, in and for the commercial core of Los Olivos.

·  Think small. Seek grant funding available to fund planning and building a system for small communities like ours.

·  Stay small. Do not give commercial uses and high-density housing development access to a system that will push urban sprawl into our agricultural lands across Highway 154 to the north and toward Ballard to the south.

·  Don’t wait. The clock is ticking.

Four of the five LOCSD Board seats are up for election in November. Six candidates are running.

Please save the date for a Candidates Forum on October 5 at 6 p.m. at Los Olivos Elementary School Gym. This forum will be jointly hosted by Los Olivos Rotary Club, Preservation of Los Olivos (POLO), and Women’s Environmental Watch (WeWatch).


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