So what is it that we do for you, and expect from each other? Well, we basically provide running, clean, potable water to our faucets. Below is the new owner/member welcome letter that outlines our basics responsibilities as both customers and member/owners. These responsibilities, of course are not limited to those outlined below, but serve as basic expectations.
Dear New South Fork Estates Home Owner,
Welcome to South Fork Estates and South Fork Estates Mutual Water Company (SFEMWC). We hope your transition to your new home in South Fork Estates was a smooth one. The following information is provided as a courtesy to inform you about your water company, and the role and responsibilities you have accepted with your purchase of your new lot/home. SFEMWC is a Non-Profit California Mutual Benefit Corporation engaged solely in providing water to its owners/members. SFEMWC conducts all business on a calendar year basis and maintains a mailing address, web site and contact information for its member’s use.
SFEMWC does not function, nor is it engaged (in any manner) as a Home Owners Association. SFEMWC is owned by its members (which now includes you) and its successful operations are dependent upon each and every member’s involvement. There are no paid positions within the SFEMWC organization and involvement is mandatory. It is not any one person’s responsibility to ensure that you have water, it is every member's responsibility to ensure that we have water.
There are two forms of involvement, Administration/Support and Water Operations that are currently available to owners/members for involvement. Every owner/member is expected to be involved so that smooth operation of SFEMWC is assured. Total participation among all owners/members is essential for optimal water delivery service; otherwise there will be no water delivery service.
The entitlement to water via SFEMWC is non-transferable with the exception of property conveyance related to lots/homes located within the current South Fork Estates development. A surcharge for the availability of a water service connection for a home/lot becomes effective upon the date that the home/lot closes escrow. The design and installation of the Water System is a major investment with infrastructure maintenance, operation and replacement costs. Therefore, each home/lot owner has a vested interest in its continued operations and reliable delivery service.
Consequently, each home/lot owner is required to pay a monthly standby charge, regardless of the water usage rate, to ensure the continuous operation and maintenance of the Water System. The billing cycle for the standby charge, plus all metered water usage charges (see rate usage chart below), is quarterly and all payments are due in advance on the last day of January, April, July, and October. Each lot owner will receive a quarterly statement in advance of the due date. This statement will include the standby charge, metered water usage charges and any other applicable charges. The standby charge may not include all the possible operational costs and requirements of the Water System in and of itself, but is required to help ensure SFEMWC’s mandate to deliver water to its members on a consistent basis. Reserves must also be set aside for the replacement, maintenance and upgrading of the Water System as necessary. These costs will be addressed on an ongoing basis and communicated to all owners/members.
All members are expected to participate in water conservation requirements (as mandated by the State of California from time to time) and to use water in a responsible and reasonable manner consistent with residential water usage standards. This means that we are agreeing to supply water to a residential (non-commercial/business) environment. A residential environment has reasonable projections as to the amount of water required for a typical household (including landscaping) and excluding mitigating circumstances (horses, pools, etc.), within our system. This analysis can be accomplished by a simple comparison of individual quarterly water usage to a standardized usage calculation based on the water system’s water delivery capabilities and the individual user’s requirements.
Also, SFEMWC is responsible for the operation and maintenance of each Water Meter Box and all the components contained within. The SFEMWC Meter Box Responsibility Policy is available upon request. There is normally a Meter Box and a Service Box, both are property of SFEMWC. The home/lot owner is responsible for the main water line outside of the last Meter Box to the dwelling and landscape. SFEMWC accepts no responsibility, and therefore is not liable, for failure, replacement, or maintenance of the home/lot owner’s main water line, or any and all other components between the last SFEMWC owned Meter Box to the dwelling and within. Please read the Meter Box Responsibility Policy carefully to ensure your understanding of what the Home/Lot owner is responsible for.
An invoice for your first billing from SFEMWC will follow this letter and contains the standby charge plus any metered water usage from the close of escrow.