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The Global High-Level Panel on Water and Peace was launched on 16 November 2015 in Geneva with the task of developing a set of proposals aimed at strengthening the global framework to prevent and resolve water-related conflicts, and facilitate the use of water as an important factor of building peace and enhancing the relevance of water issues in national and global policy making.
15 countries have co-convened the Panel: Cambodia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Estonia, France, Ghana, Hungary, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Oman, Senegal, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland.
The issue of “Water and Peace” has many facets. The Panel was asked to focus on four main themes:
- Identify legal, economic, financial and institutional mechanisms to incentivize multi-sectoral and transboundary water cooperation;
- Examine how to cope with and prevent water-related conflicts, namely transboundary and inter-sectoral — possibly exploring potential mechanisms to promote hydro-diplomacy;
- Promote effective implementation of the global water conventions;
- Promote best practices in water cooperation.
Panel Members are serving in their individual capacity. The Panel is independent and is tasked with outlining concrete proposals and recommendations to enable water to be an instrument of peace. These proposals will be non-binding and will address policy issues at all levels (global, regional, national and local). The Panel will not however make any country specific recommendations.
While the Panel is entirely independent, it has worked in close cooperation with relevant stakeholders, notably with the UN which is represented in the Panel through UN-Water as observer and which is involved in all sessions.
The Panel has met four times: in Geneva, Switzerland, in Dakar, Senegal, in San José, Costa Rica and in Amman, Jordan. Each time, it has met with regional experts in order to feed its reflection.
The Geneva Water Hub acts as Secretariat of the Panel. The Strategic Foresight Group, a think tank based in Mumbai, supports the work of the Panel.
In September 2017 there will be the launching of the Panel’s Report in Geneva and in New York. The Report will then be presented in regional events all around the world and at the 2018 World Water Forum in Brasilia.
14 September 2017 Panel Report Launch in Geneva Photo Gallery
The Members of the Global High-Level Panel on Water and Peace
Prof. Danilo Türk, nominated by the Republic of Slovenia
Served as the third President of the Republic of Slovenia (2007-2012).
Currently Emeritus Professor of International Law, University in Ljubljana, Slovenia.
Prof Türk had a rich and varied career as an academic, as a diplomat and as UN official. In the years 1984-1992, he wrote several UN reports on human rights. In the years 1992-2000 he was Ambassador, Permanent representative of Slovenia to the UN in New York. He served on the UN Security Council in 1998-1999 and was President of the Security Council twice. Between 2000-2005, he served as UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, at the invitation of Mr. Kofi Annan, then UN Secretary-General. In that period he worked on a variety of diplomatic projects of the UN, including in the field of preventive diplomacy. In the year 2016 he was a candidate for the post of UN Secretary-General. His genuine commitment as Chairman of the Global High-Level Panel on Water and Peace (2015-2017) was key to the success of the work of the Panel.
H.E. Mr. Mansour Faye, nominated by the Republic of Senegal
Minister of Hydraulics and Sanitation of the Republic of Senegal since July 2014.
Mayor of the city of Saint-Louis that is located at the mouth of the Senegal River.
Under Mr. Faye’s tenure, Senegal reached the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for drinking water and sanitation. He was one of the architects of the first public debate on “Water, Peace and Security” launched by Senegal during his presidency of the United Nations Security Council in November 2016. This debate led the Council to reflect on the ways making water a means of international cooperation rather than a “vector of conflict”. He was member of the Organizations for the Development of the Senegal River (OMVS) and for the Development the Gambia River Basin (OMVG). He also chaired the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) from 2014 to 2016 and he currently chairs the African Water Facility (AWF).
Dr Alvaro Umaña Quesada, nominated by the Republic of Costa Rica
First Minister of Energy and Environment of Costa Rica (1986-1990).
Currently co-chairs Climate Transparency, an organization dedicated to monitor and rate country progress toward compliance of the Paris Climate Accords.
With an academic background in environmental science and engineering as well as economics, Dr Alvaro Umaña has a long relation with United Nations institutions including having been a member of the Executive Board of UNESCO, Chairman of the World Bank Inspection Panel, Leader of the UNDP Energy and Environment Group, and representative of Central America on the Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Members (by order of nomination by co-convening country)
Prof Laurence Boisson de Chazournes, nominated by Switzerland
Professor at the Law Faculty at the University of Geneva.
Expert and advisor to various States, International Organizations, associations and foundations.
As an academic and a practitioner, Laurence Boisson de Chazournes has been a renowned expert who has worked in different regions of the world for many years. She has contributed to the strengthening of the Organization for the Development of the River Senegal (OMVS) and to the negotiation of the agreement on the River Nile. She has also served as an arbitrator in an Indus Waters dispute and is an advocate in international litigation involving rivers in Latin America.
Dr Claudia Patricia Mora, nominated by the Republic of Colombia
Former Vice Minister of Water and Sanitation of the Republic of Colombia.
Currently Partner and head of the Environmental Law Department at the Pinilla, González and Pieto Abogados Law Firm.
Claudia Mora is a lawyer by profession with wide experience in environmental law as well as public utilities regulation. Claudia was Superintendent of Public Services for Drinking Water and Sanitation. Under her leadership, important environmental regulations and policies were issued such as the National Water Policy (National Policy for the Integral Management of the Water Resource – 2010).
Dr Pascual Fernandez, nominated by Spain
Former State Secretary for Water and Seashore of Spain.
Currently Professor of Applied economics in the field of environment at the Juan Carlos I University of Madrid.
He has served in his country as General Director of Taxes in the Regions of Castilla and León and in Madrid. He is author of 11 books and several research papers in applied economic. Actually is the Dean and Chairman of the Madrid Economists Association.
Professeur Andras Szöllösi-Nagy, nominated by the Republic of Hungary
Former Rector for the UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education in Delft from 2009 to 2014.
Currently professor of Sustainable Water Management at the National University of Public Service in Hungary.
Dr András Szöllösi-Nagy has 30+ years of experience in water resource management; In addition to many years of research and teaching, he served for 20 years as Secretary of UNESCO’s International Hydrological Programme (IHP) where he was instrumental in initiating and launching the UN World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP). He is a founding member of the World Water Council (WWC).
His Royal Highness Prince Hassan bin Talal of the Hashemite Kingdom Of Jordan, nominated by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
Chairs the United Nations Secretary General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB).
His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal has chaired the Independent Commission on International Humanitarian Issues, and contributed to their report “Winning the Human Race”; which addresses issues such as man against man, man against nature and natural disasters. HRH also chairs the Strategic Foresight Group’s initiative called Blue Peace which focusses on water’s key role in all areas of security.
Mr. Yerlan Nysanbayev, nominated by Kazakhstan
Vice Minister of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Vice Minister of the Environmental Protection in the Republic of Kazakhstan since 2013.
Hon. Mike Hammah, nominated by the Republic of Ghana
Former Minister for Land and Natural Resources of the Republic of Ghana.
It is with his long political experience and knowledge of the private sector that Hon Mike Hammah has contributed to the work of the Panel. Mr. Hon Mike Hammah is a politician and a professional quantity surveyor. He has held many positions in the Ghanaian political space including during sixteen years as member of the Ghanaian parliament (for Effutu constituency) and for 12 years as deputy Minister for roads and transport, Minister for transport and Minister for lands and natural resources. He is currently a construction cost consultant and a risk management consultant.
Mr. Ciaran O’Cuinn, nominated by the Sultanate of Oman
Center Director of the Middle East Desalinization Research Center of the Sultanate of Oman since 2013.
From 2002 to 2011, Mr. Ciaran O’Cuinn has acted as Special Advisor to the Minister at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and finally at the Department of Justice and Equality of the Republic of Ireland. He has then served as Executive Director of External and Strategic Affairs at the Dublin City University. Since 2013, he is the Center Director of the MEDRC of the Sultanate of Oman, a unique international organization that works to build solutions to fresh water scarcity across borders and divisions.
Dr Andres Tarand, nominated by Estonia
Former Prime Minister of the Republic of Estonia.
With an academic background of climatologist and researcher, Andres Tarand had led the negotiations between Russia and Estonia for the demarcation of the border which is mainly in courses of rivers and lakes. He has also been a Member of the Estonian Parliament as well as a Member of the European Parliament for the Social Democratic Party. He has been involved in various organizations with environmental and sustainable development concerns, such as the Estonian Geographical Association, the Estonian Institute for Sustainable Development, the Stockholm Environment Institute, the Estonian Nature Fund, and Globe International Europe.
H.E. Mr. Thor Chetha, appointed by Cambodia
State Secretary of the Minister of Water Resources and Meteorology of the Kingdom of Cambodia since 2013.
Currently State Secretary of the Minister of Water Resources and Meteorology.
H.E Thor Chetha earned a Masters Degree in Political Science and Bachelor Degree in public law. He also earned High diploma in the field of Public Leadership, Administration and Good Governance from Nanyang University, Singapore, received high certificate in the field of Commerce Policy Development for GMS from Singapore and attained Diploma in the field of Mine Management from the United States. He has been assigned to be a co-chairman for the CAVAC II (Cambodia Agricultural Value Chain Program).
Mr. Franck Galland, nominated by France
Founder and CEO of Environmental Emergency and Security Services for the French Republic since 2010.
Mr. Galland is currently considered as one of the leading French expert in strategic and security issues related to water. He also made extensive research on the vulnerabilities of critical infrastructures such as water supply systems. He is the author of three well-received books and about fifty research papers published in reviews of international relations and defense. As a background, he spent 20 years working in the water industry and is currently the CEO of an engineering firm specialized in resiliency and contingency planning for utilities. Mr. Galland is also a reserve officer (rank : Lt-Colonel) serving as a water expert for the French Ministry of Defense.
Mr. Abdelaaziz Ameziane, nominated by Morocco
Project manager and adviser to the General Secretariat of the Ministry of Water
General Engineer and reserve officer, Mr. Ameziane is one of the leading Moroccan experts in the field of water resources, including on regulatory and institutional aspects. With 30 years of experience in water research and management, including during periods of conflicts, he contributed to the development of the national water strategy and leaded several reforms of the water sector in Morocco, notably on the aspects related to intersectorial conflicts.
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Co-convening countries supporting quotes (alphabetic quote author)
Mr Karl Erjavec
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Slovenia
“Water is a source of life and prosperity. It should never be a source of division.”
Mr Siim Kiisler
Minister of Environment of Estonia
“Effective transboundary water cooperation, including timely and credible information exchange, is an important basis for conflict prevention.”
Mr Yerlan Nysanbayev
Vice Minister of Agriculture and of the Environmental Protection of the Republic of Kazakhstan
“Peace and security through water cooperation.”
Mr Macky Sall
President of Senegal
“Water is a source of life and well-being when its use calls upon cooperative spirit and sharing.”
H.E. Mr Ney Samol
Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Cambodia to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva.
“Cambodia people live in harmony with nature, thanks to abundant natural water system, government’s policy and political stability.”
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Input documents to the reflection of the Panel
Geneva Water Hub Think Tank roundtables reports
- 20 March 2017 – Round Table – “Data for Water, Peace and Security”.
- 28 February 2017 – Round Table – “Hydro-Diplomacy for Water, Peace and Security”.
- 27 February 2017 – Round Table – “Financing Incentives for Water Cooperation”.
- 3 February 2017 – Round Table – “Refugees and Access to Water: Challenges and Responses”.
- 1 November 2016 – Round Table – “Intersectoriality and Conflicts”.
- 26 October 2016 – Round Table – “Promoting the Effectiveness of International Water Law in Support of Security and Peace”.
- 14 June 2016 – Round Table – “Protection of Water During and After Armed Conflicts”.
- 24 September 2015 – Round Table – “Cooperation and Benefit Sharing in the Senegal and Niger River Basins”.
Documents of the Strategic Foresight Group (SFG)
- Bolognesi T., Bréthaut Ch., Sangbana K., & Tignino M. (2016). Transboundary governance in the Senegal and Niger river basins: historical analysis and overview of the status of common facilities and benefit sharing arrangements.
- Pohl, B., & Kramer, A. (2016). Investing in basins of risk: What elements should a putative code of conduct for business operating in basins at risk include? (Discussion Note). Geneva Water Hub.
- Pohl, B., & Kramer, A. (2016). Sharing benefits in shared basins: What are the opportunities of and experiences with benefit-sharing in transboundary basins? (Discussion Note). Geneva Water Hub.
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Water and Peace Symphony
By the time the Panel’s messages and recommendations are finalized, they will also be conveyed in the universal language of music. Indeed, a unique and particularly inspiring feature of the Panel’s work is that it will be accompanied and enriched by musicians from around the world. The result will be an original symphony for Water & Peace, composed progressively as the Panel convenes in different continents. Upon completion, the symphony is intended to become a powerful symbol and inspiration for all efforts to make water a source of cooperation and peace.
More information and music can be found here.
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Posted on Thursday, November 08, 2012
Yesterday, hell froze over when an Argentine court embargoed or, in effect, froze up to potentially $19 billion in Chevron assets in the South American country.
Now it’s time to fight it out on the ice.
Chevron, which now has about $2 billion in assets in Argentina, has sworn it will never pay a dime to cleanup the contamination it left behind in the Ecuadorian rainforest. Said former General Counsel Charles James: “Not till hell freezes over, and then we will fight it out on the ice.”
Chevron has defied Ecuador’s courts, refusing to pay an enforceable $19 billion judgment and forcing the Ecuadorians to file lawsuits to seize assets in Ecuador, Brazil, Canada and Argentina to obtain the damage award for one of the world’s largest oil-related environmental disasters.
WATER WARS – MOUNTAIN HOUSE, California – Letter to the Community – Water Supply Curtailment from the State Water Resources Control Board and MORE About Mountain House . . . Posted on www.StopTheCrime.net just added . .COMMENT: We are still digging into what seems peculiar about Mountain House in California. ALL week national media coverage has told us Mountain House will be OUT of water in days . . . Our research teams contacted some locals in the real estate profession, in Mountain House on 6/20/15, and were told there had been NO media coverage that they had noticed in Mountain House. NO Media was there, that they noticed, about the nationwide announcement that there were ONLY a few days left of water available for the community. In-fact one realtor only heard about the water curtailment on the community Facebook and an out of state relative who called with concern. Another local comment the entire situation seemed strange, very strange . . . We were told Mountain House was a branch off of Tracy, California which is ten minutes drive time away . . . There are no stores or shops in Mountain House yet, however, the development was required to reach a certain number of roof tops to start construction on stores – and they have met that build out number . . . A NEW high school has JUST been completed! Now they plan to start building a business center.The USDA home loans have very stringent requirements and strict windows of income brackets. These loans are difficult for buyers to qualify and meet the income criteria. (more below about USDA home loans – below)Mountain House has its own fire department and the police is the highway patrol . . . Seems there might be ties to the corporation that acquired the land, SunChase Holdings and Rothschild . . . Th BIG corporate players are involved from the building team, to the USDA, Smart Growth, Green Building – a UN Agenda 21 sustainable development. . . Mountain House is a census-designated place or CDP, a term assigned by the U.S. Census Bureau to communities that resemble cities but lack incorporation or any sort of municipal government. It seems to be similar to a condominium homeowners association with an elected board and C.C. and R’s (Covenants, Condition and Restrictions) . . . The water shortage could have a significant impact upon the board and all the homeowners if they find their costs must go up to defray trucked in water and possible holding tanks for water storage should the community receive NO more water. . .
Mountain House has the ideal conditions to be used as a template to shut off water. . It’s really not a city. Remember, Mountain House is a census-designated place, or CDP, a term assigned by the U.S. Census Bureau to communities that resemble cities and have no sort of municipal government. Also Mountain House is a smart community following the UN Agenda 21 policies of which deep water cuts are called for.
Keep in mind we do NOT have a Water Shortage. We have Primary Water – water that is continuously created within the mantel of the Earth. Water is RENEWABLE . . . Go to www.PrimaryWater.org Do NOT be tricked and fearful – Primary Water is Good News and we must understand the REAL water facts. . .
The board can fine a water user $1,000 to $10,000 per day for violating the curtailment order or subsequent “cease and desist” orders issued by regulators.
The district will keep supplying water to the town “until we have had the opportunity to fully evaluate the curtailment notice,” said Gilmore, adding that it is also considering litigation to protect its water rights.
In addition to Mountain House, about 160 local farmers are affected by the curtailment order, Gilmore said. Without water, the area would lose almost 10,000 acres of almonds, cherries, sweet corn, grapes, tomatoes, walnuts and other crops, he said.
In Mountain House, lawns, shrubbery, parks and athletic fields are at risk, said Edwin Pattison, general manager of the Mountain House Community Services District.
If it loses its water supply, Mountain House could be forced to draw down its storage in a few days and then be without water, Pattison said.
But “that’s the worst-case scenario,” Pattison added, saying that he believes he will be able to find another water supplier with older water rights that has water in storage that it can sell.
“The reality is we’re going to get some water supply,” he said. “The question is: Is it going to be enough to maintain permanent landscaping or are we going to lose tens of millions of dollars of value that supports the aesthetics of this community?”
If Pattison fails to find other water, the community and the irrigation district could negotiate with the water board to keep water flowing.
5 days ago – Mountain House, a planned community of about 9600 people, buys itswater from the … CALIFORNIA DROUGHT … Ed Pattison, told his Board of Directors just two days before the cuts were announced. The state’s so-called “curtailments” require water users to cease diversions within … Letters to the editor.
READ the Letter to the Mountain House Community from the General Manager of the Community Services District – Water Supply Curtailment from the State Water Resources Control Board – dated June 15, 2015 -EXCERPT:
June 15, 2015
Dear Mountain House Resident,
In an unprecedented move [but not without surprise in this fourth year of a drought], the state agency that regulates Post-1914 water rights exerted regulatory discretion under the state drought emergency declaration to begin curtailing Pre-1914 water rights. The implications of this state action could impact the community of Mountain House.
Mountain House will not run out of water as some reports have stated in the press recently. Your Mountain House Board and staff have been aware of this potential issue and have been working to minimize potential harm to the community. As we speak, staff is working to secure an alternative water supply that combined with prudent conservation measures will carry us through the end of this year [Let’s hope and pray for a large Sierra Snowpack this next winter!]Mountain House – HomeWe had a 38.5% reduction of water usagage in December 2014_______________________________________________________________________________________
Loan funds may be used to help low-income individuals or households purchase homesin rural areas. Funds can be used to build, repair, renovate or relocate a …
Home · About RD … provides a 90% loan note guarantee to approved lenders in order to reduce the risk of extending 100% loans to eligible rural homebuyers.
In the news
- USDA Seeks Applications for Loans and Grants to Create Jobs and Support Rural Economic DevelopmentUSDA.gov – 1 day ago
WASHINGTON, June 19, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA is accepting applications for loans and grants to support …
Details about how to apply for this are on page 35299 of the June 19 Federal Register. Application forms may be obtained from any USDA Rural Development State Office.
USDA Seeks Applications for Loans and Grants to Create Jobs and Support Rural Economic Development
WASHINGTON, June 19, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA is accepting applications for loans and grants to support business expansion, create jobs and increase economic opportunities in rural communities.
“Small businesses are the engine that drives job creation and investment capital coupled with business savvy provide the spark that gets that engine running” Vilsack said. “This funding will help the nation’s rural microentrepreneurs strengthen their capacity to create jobs, grow their businesses and fuel the economy. USDA is working with local organizations to provide capital to help small business owners achieve higher performance.”
Funding is being provided through USDA’s Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP). The 2014 Farm Bill reauthorized the program through 2018. For Fiscal Year 2015, more than $16 million is available in loans and grants.
RMAP provides loans and grants to Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDOs) to help microentrepreneurs – very small businesses with 10 or fewer employees – access capital to start or grow businesses. MDOs use the funds to provide training and technical assistance to small businesses or to establish revolving loan funds that provide micro-loans, typically $5,000 to $50,000, to rural microentrepreneurs.
Since the beginning of the Obama Administration, USDA Rural Development has invested $72.2 million in loans and grants through the RMAP program to support more than 390 projects that help very small business enterprises.
For example, in 2014, Rural Development awarded a $500,000 loan and a $105,000 grant to the Midcoast Council of Governments (MCOG) in Maine to capitalize a revolving loan fund. The fund provided technical assistance and training to rural microentrepreneurs and microenterprises.__________________________________________________________________________Notice
Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA) for the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program for Fiscal Year 2015
SUMMARYThis Notice is to invite applications for loans and grants under the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP) pursuant to 7 CFR part 4280, subpart D, for fiscal year (FY) 2015. Funding to support $14.190 million in loans and $2.086 million in grants is currently available. The RMAP funds were provided through the Agricultural Act of 2014, Public Law 113-79, on February 7, 2014 (2014 Farm Bill). RMAP provides the following types of support: loan only, combination loan and technical assistance grant, and subsequent technical assistance grants to Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDO).All applicants are responsible for any expenses incurred in developing their applications or costs incurred prior to the obligation date._______________________________________________________________________________________
What the Heck is a “Census-Designated Place?”https://en.wikipedia.org/…/Place_(United_States_Census_Bure…Wikipedia
Jump to Census designated place – A place may be an incorporated place (a self-governing city, town, or village) or it may be a census-designated place (CDP). Incorporated places are defined by the laws of the states in which they are contained. The Census Bureau delineates CDPs.
dictionary.sensagent.com/Census-designated%20place/en-en Definitions of Census-designated place, synonyms, antonyms, derivatives of Census- designated …
Census designated placeFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaA census designated place (CDP) is a concentration of population identified by the United States Census Bureau for statistical purposes. CDPs are delineated for each decennial census as the statistical counterparts of incorporated places,such as cities, towns, and villages. CDPs are populated areas that lack separate municipal government, but which otherwise physically resemble incorporated places.CDPs are delineated solely to provide data for settled concentrations of population that are identifiable by name but are not legally incorporated under the laws of the state in which they are located. They include small rural communities, coloniaslocated along the U.S. border with Mexico, and unincorporated resort and retirement communities. The boundaries of a CDP have no legal status. Thus, they may not always correspond with the local understanding of the area or community with the same name. However, criteria established for the 2010 Census require that a CDP name “be one that is recognized and used in daily communication by the residents of the community” (not “a name developed solely for planning or other purposes”) and recommend that a CDP’s boundaries be mapped based on the geographic extent associated with residents’ use of the place name.What the Heck is a “Census-Designated Place?” | Aaron’s Worldwide Adventures . . .EXCERPT:
But this insular little community troubled me the entire time I was there. It felt like a resort. Its logo was everywhere. Something was off here. But what was it…
Interwebs, don’t fail me now! And the answer, as I and my fellow researcherLaurel came to learn on Sunday night is that Keystone, Colorado is nottechnically a town. No, no, it’s a little something termed as a Census-Designated Place.
What’s a Census-Designated Place?
Turns out a Census-Designated Place, or CDP, is a term assigned by the U.S.Census Bureau to communities that resemble cities but lack incorporation or any sort of municipal government. Or a post office, it seems (at least in the case of Keystone)._________________________________________________________________________________Mountain House – Annual Operating BUDGET 2014 – 2015 . . . a census designated place . . .EXCERPT:
About Mountain House
The Mountain House area was originally inhabited by the American Indian Cholbon tribelet of the Northern Valley Yokuts. The tribelet’s territory extended westward along Old River to just west of Bethany. In the late 18th century the Spanish explorers led by Juan Bautista de Anza, traveled from the San Francisco Bay to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. The Spanish never settled in this region and the land was mostly used for agriculture and stopping off points for transportation and trade.
The name Mountain House originates from the Gold Rush era. When miners traveled from San Francisco to the Sierra foothills, they often rested about midway at a house called “Mountain House” at the bottom of a range of hills. The first Mountain House structure took the form of a blue tent and was built in 1849 by Thomas Goodall. With the help of American Indians, Goodall built an adobe house on the site where Mountain House became a rest stop for miners, stockmen, rancheros and immigrants. Simon Zimmerman purchased the stop and through his hard work Mountain House became a famous way station on the road to Stockton.
In 1940, the last remaining structure of Bethany, the Bethany Post Office was torn down. Since then, the land in the Mountain House area has primarily been used for agriculture.
In the mid-1980’s, the process of creating Mountain House was started as an idea. It took until 1994 when the County Board of Supervisors approved that Mountain House would be included in the San Joaquin General Plan. In 1996 the Mountain House Community Services District was formed.
The Mountain House Community Service District’s Sphere of Influence covers an area of 4,784 acres or almost 7.5 square miles. The current Master Plan for Mountain House envisions a community with 12 separate neighborhoods (“villages”) plus a Town Center that will provide approximately 21,000 jobs, approximately 16,000 dwelling units for a population of over 44,000 people.
In 1991, SunChase Holdings acquired most of the land that would become Mountain House as an assemblage of optioned parcels. The Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) was certified for the Mountain House project in March 1992; however, Mountain House was not added to San Joaquin County General Plan at that time by the Board of Supervisors.
In February 1993, the San Joaquin County’s Board of Supervisors certified the EIR and finally included the proposed Mountain House community in the San Joaquin County General Plan. Mountain House was intended to be added as an amendment to the San Joaquin County General Plan 1995. The master developer was required to help form the Community Services District in 1996 which would be the municipal government within the Mountain House jurisdiction.
The master developer proceeded to secure all necessary local, state and federal entitlements and permits in order to break ground and begin construction in 2001. The first residents of Mountain House bought their homes and moved to Mountain House in June 2003.
By 2008, there were over 1,000 registered voters in Mountain House which was the number required to hold an election deciding the independence of the Community Services District from San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors. In November 2008, Mountain House residents voted to have a locally elected Board of Directors; and, five (5) of eighteen (18) candidates were elected to serve on the first Board of Directors. They were: Matthew Balzarini, James Lamb, Eric Payne, Andy Su, and Bernice K. Tingle. The locally elected members of the Board of Directors were sworn into office in December 2008.
The Mountain House Community Services District is a political subdivision of the State of California, formed in 1996, in accordance with the Community District Services Law in Government Code Section 61000. When created, the Local Agency Formation Commission granted the District the following eighteen (18) separate governmental powers to exercise within the boundaries of the district:
- Water services.
- Sewer services.
- Garbage services.
- Fire protection.
- Public recreation.
- Street lighting.
- Library buildings and services.
- Convert utilities to underground.
- Police protection.
- Road maintenance.
- Transportation services.
- Graffiti abatement.
- CC&R enforcement.
- Flood control protection.
- Pest and weed abatement.
- Wildlife habitat mitigation.
- Telecommunications services.
- Dissemination of information.
District Authority cont.
In addition, the District has the following general powers: sue and be sued; purchase, receive by gift or bequest and hold land, make contracts and purchases and hold personal property necessary to the exercise of its powers, manage, sell, lease, or otherwise dispose of its property as the interest of its inhabitants require; levy and collect taxes authorized by law and exercise such other and further powers as may be especially conferred by law or as may be necessarily implied from those expressed. All services outside of the 18 enumerated powers are performed either by San Joaquin County or the State of California.
Mountain House District Geography
The Mountain House Community Services District is located in the west area of San Joaquin County, approximately 61 miles southeast of San Francisco, 52 miles east of Oakland, 51 miles northeast of San Jose, and 76.5 southwest of Sacramento. The District occupies 7.5 square miles.
The Board of Directors
The members of the Board of Directors are elected by the voters to serve overlapping four-year terms. The President and Vice President are elected by the Board for a one year term. The Board of Directors sets policy and exercises the legislative authority of the District. By Resolution MMV111-5, the Board of Directors holds meetings on the second Wednesday of every month and at other times as, in the opinion of Board, the public interest may require. The current Board of Directors members and the dates upon which their respective terms expire are as follows:
President: Steven Gutierrez, November 2014
Vice President: Bernice K. Tingle, November 2016 Director: Celeste Farron, November 2014 Director: Jim Lamb, November 2016
Director: Andy K. Su, November 2016
Administration and Management
The Mountain House Community Services District is a Board-Manager form of government. The Board of Directors appoints the General Manager who appoints all other District personnel. The General Manager is charged with overseeing the District’s daily operations. Board appointed Committees assist the Board of Directors in carrying out various aspects and functions of the District.
Aerial picture of Mountain House Community Services District
Land Area ………………………………………………………………………..7.5 square miles
Population by Gender2 Female……………………………………………………………………………………52.3% Male………………………………………………………………………………………47.7%
Population by Age Group2
Under 14 years……………………………………………………………………………30.1% 15 to 24 years………………………………………………………………………………10.9% 25 to 44 years ……………………………………………………………………………….36% 45 to 59 years …………………………………………………………………………….17.2% 60 to 74 years……………………………………………………………………………….5.6% 75 years and over ………………………………………………………………………….0.2%
Median Age: 30.6
1 State of California, Department of Finance estimates.
2 US Census Bureau, 2007-2011 American Community Survey 5-year estimates_____________________________________________________________________________
Mountain House a California community (deemed out of water) and SunChase Holdings seems to be affiliated with ROTHSCHILD . . .
In 1991, SunChase Holdings acquired most of the land that would become Mountain House as an assemblage of optioned parcels.
CDW LLC: S&P Affirms ‘BB-‘ CCR & Revises Outlook to Positive …. of SunChase Holdings, which purchased the bulk of Hokulia’s debt with Bank ….. Rothschild
Principal, Bornemann Associates LLC. Donald E. Brandt …… Judith & RobertRothschild. Earl & Sandra Rusnak …… Linda & Bill Pope,. SunChase Holdings, Inc.
In the San Francisco area, there have been reports of more rats out in public than usual, as the area’s water shortage has drawn them in search of nourishment.
“There’s no water source for them right now so they’re going outside to get it,” Tina O’Keefe, of Dirty Rats Rodent Removal, told the Bay Area’s NBC affiliate. “They eat plants. They eat meat. They’re going to the dog park because there are water bowls. They’re going to horse stables because there’s water.”
Outdoor irrigation could soon be entirely banned in San Joaquin County’s newest community, more evidence that the pain of the drought is not limited to local farmers.
Mountain House, a planned community of about 9,600 people, buys its water from the Byron Bethany Irrigation District near Tracy.
But on Friday, state officials announced that Byron Bethany can no longer divert water under its century-old water right, along with 114 other water districts, farms and companies up and down the Central Valley.
The announcement was no surprise. But Mountain House must now scramble to either secure an alternate supply, or impose massive cuts on its residents.
“The drought is beginning to really hurt people where they live, and Mountain House is no different,” the community’s general manager, Ed Pattison, told his Board of Directors just two days before the cuts were announced.
The state’s so-called “curtailments” require water users to cease diversions within seven days, or face penalties up to $1,000 per day. However, the state says it will consider — on a case-by-case basis — allowing some water to be delivered for health and human safety purposes.
If that happens in Mountain House, the town would be left with about 50 gallons per person per day, Pattison said last week. Current usage is about 97 gallons per person per day.
Essentially cutting the water supply in half creates the “very real possibility” that all outdoor watering will be banned, Pattison said.
“That would basically mean that Mountain House would lose potentially hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars in landscaping that has already been put in place, and is one of the beautiful aesthetics that brings people to Mountain House,” he said.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — With Californians tasked to cut back water during a four-year drought, the sound of water run-off has become a call to action.
California’s Placer County Water Agency has two new smart phone apps, launched last October. One is a shower timer, which converts time in shower to gallons of water used.
The second, sure to be more discussed, allows people to report water wasters.
But as California’s devastating drought enters its fourth summer and water rates and penalties are surging, landlords are increasingly passing along those costs — on top of the monthly rent.
It isn’t just the additional cost that’s irking renters — it’s the growing suspicion among neighbors suddenly stuck splitting one big water bill. A vast majority of California’s apartment complexes have one master water meter, not individual ones for each unit. So there’s no way to measure who’s conserving and who is letting the tap run wild.
“I’m not going to pay for other people to do their laundry and take hourlong showers,” said Samantha Brown, who recently moved out of the Concord apartment complex into a single-family home. “It’s not fair.”
Tensions over water are mounting among tenants of multifamily dwellings in a state where more than 40 percent of the population live in apartment buildings — nearly 16 million people. A social experiment on water conservation is playing out on a grand scale, from studio apartments to penthouses, from duplexes to high rises.
The new reality for apartment dwellers is the latest installment in this newspaper’s ongoing series “A State of Drought.”
“When tenants are paying for a water bill, they conserve. When they’re not, they go crazy,” said Doug Smith, president of Fuller Enterprises, who started charging his renters for water last year at the Mountain View apartments in Concord, one of 22 apartment buildings he owns throughout the Bay Area.
Already, he says he has seen a 12 percent reduction in water use since he started billing his renters a year ago. On average, he says, his tenants’ water bills are running about $23 a month.