The reason I went to law school was that I am willing to stand up and be an outspoken voice for
those people and issues that need one.
The West County Wastewater District is a special district, meaning it BELONGS TO YOU, the ratepayer.
Vote and be heard West County!
Eres poderosa/poderoso. Tu voto es tu voz!
Eres poderosa/poderoso. Tu voto es tu voz!
Why am I for running for re-election to the West County Wastewater District board of directors? Four years ago my husband shared an email from an elected City Councilperson that was reaching out to the community with a call for help from the now-deceased Director Leonard McNeil and the employees of the West County Wastewater District. They believed the district was not being managed well and the employees were asking for change. Director McNeil and I talked for 5 1/2 hours and I agreed to help. These four years have flown by and there is much left to do to fulfill the promise I made, with your VOTE of support I'd like to finish honoring that promise.
SO WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING DIRECTOR STANLEY?
Well, read below.
Here is my mantra: Embrace our obligations to the future by planning and preparing today.
In my first year, I served as committee chair to the administrative and finance committee, which vetted how projects were going to be paid for and served another year as a member of that committee. I strongly support environmental issues and have served on the Global Warming Committee for 2 years.
SEA LEVEL RISING
I am proud to have served on the Resilience by Design Advisory Board at the North Richmond MAC in 2017. I was asked by County Supervisor Gioia's office and volunteered my time where the lead group, The Mithun Home Team provided a technical design team that included "landscape architects, architects, planners, coastal engineers, ecologists, artists, transportation and alternative mobility planners, affordable housing finance experts, economic advisors, and community outreach facilitators". This group addressed such issues as "enduring structural racism, chronic flooding, industrial pollution, and poverty".
Asked again by Supervisor Gioia's office I have the privilege of attending with another director the Horizontal Levee Working Group meetings held at the West County Wastewater District, (WCWD). Our hope is to convince Chevron and Richmond Sanitary to join us in building a levee that will protect all three entities and the businesses, train tracks, Richmond Parkway, and the neighborhoods beyond, including North Richmond, as a collaborative effort to address environmental and social justice as well as protecting our treatment plant against sea level rising. If this project is realized it would create a beautiful wildlife habitat and learning center off the walking trail between the San Pablo and Wildcat Creeks along the boundary of the WCWD. I believe there will be infrastructure and climate change grants available that will make the project financially feasible and not cost ratepayers any additional monies. Sea Level is rising, by addressing that fact and protecting our treatment plant we could also enhance our community and our environment. This levee offers an opportunity to form relationships with our local environmental community and to work collaboratively with local stakeholders to benefit our community together. As this pandemic has shown us, having the opportunity to walk outside while social distancing and enjoy nature locally is a valuable asset to our community.
CARBON FOOTPRINT REDUCTION
About 3 years ago the board and then the global warming committee started asking about our carbon footprint. In order to discover if we were reducing our carbon footprint, we discovered we needed to understand what our carbon baseline was. The board approved a contract with a multinational company that had the expertise to determine our baseline and offer solutions. That report has been presented. We learned that we could reduce our carbon footprint by 70+%. To reduce our carbon footprint we would need to stop drying our biosolids in outside drying beds and decide how to process those biosolids that is the least harmful to the environment and most beneficial to society. That solution is an intriguing decision. For example, we could harvest the greenhouse gas to provide green energy to power our sewer treatment process, we could harvest finite nutrients like phosphate and recycle those valuable minerals and we could produce a marketable commodity using our biosolids.
Science is fun. Did you know biosolids = poop?
SEWER PIPE REPLACEMENT
It took 2+ years for an outside firm to survey all 240 miles of the sewer pipes in our district during different seasons. They have assigned priority to the areas identified as being the most heavy Infiltration/Inflow (I/I) zones and assigning a color coded priority for replacing and possibly redesigning our sewer pipe system in those zones if conditions have changed over time and encouraging local residences to have their private laterals inspected and repaired or replaced as needed with a yet to be revealed revamped program. Read more on my Issues page. Short of an emergency situation or part of a capital improvement project, no director, no ratepayer, no one person can or should be allowed to influence the priority of which pipes get replaced. By assigning priority based on what zones are most adversely affecting the collection and treatment of wastewater we have created an inviolable social justice protection against inequity. Pandemics and no infrastructure low-cost loans have and will slow down sewer pipe replacement.
We fired the General Manager soon after the 2016 election, had another quit within a month, decided to not hire one after a year as an interim, and finally hired a female General Manager last year in 2019.
We had one director decide to not run for re-election in 2018 and were fortunate in finding a diverse and knowledgeable candidate willing to run.
We sadly had one director die in 2019 and we went through the process to appoint a new director, who is running for election this year.
We were forced to divide into voting wards in 2019, which needlessly took up three months of time as we had already decided to do so, but under threat of a lawsuit, we had to hurry the process along.
I first met with the Building and Construction Trades Council in the first part of 2017 and they gave a presentation to our board that year. In 2019 the board directed staff to research and report on union planned labor agreements and the board voted later that year to enter into a planned labor agreement for all projects over one million dollars. This will allow smaller local companies an opportunity to bid on smaller projects and the Trades Council oversight will provide a welcomed element on our larger capital improvement projects and provide the opportunity for apprenticeships for local hires.
In June 2019 the board approved 103 million dollars of unfunded capital improvement projects. This year we anticipate another 7-10 million to be added to that list. More information about this can be found on my Issues page.
The staff has been busy reviewing and revising job descriptions, writing Standards of Operation, as none existed and the Board has made revisions to policy as we have evolved. 50+ years of clutter in basements and attics were cleaned out. We've taken inventory of the state of operations and have created a long list of things to do, a.s.a.p.
I intend to propose that we take another look at those job descriptions and SOPs with fresh eyes reviewing the words used, ensuring that we do not miss opportunities to find well qualified job applicants and current employees do not suffer from, unintended disadvantages due to racial or other biases. More on this topic under my Issues page.
So how do we "Embrace our obligations to the future by planning and preparing today?"
Like everything else in our lives, we have to take care of the day-to-day stuff which is:
1. Protect public health through safe, responsible wastewater collection and treatment, recovering the water for reuse and promoting environmental stewardship for our community.
2. Replace, maintain and upgrade tools, equipment, and technology as needed.
3. Replace aging sewer pipes at the industry standard rate or above.
It gets expensive when low-cost infrastructure loans become unavailable or we have a growing list of capital improvements that cannot be ignored totaling over 100 million dollars. My opinion is this, no one can afford for their property tax bill, (or through rent increases), to absorb that kind of debt, not over 5 years or even 10 years. The benefit to those residing in our service area will be generational, thus why should this generation pay the entire burden of what future generations will enjoy? I will discuss this more on my Issues page, my point is rather than ignore our obligations to the future, we should embrace them and plan and prepare for them fairly and responsibly. I believe it is my obligation as your elected representative to seek out ways to reduce this burden.
What would you like to know about me personally?
I went to Golden Gate University School of Law; I have a Juris Doctorate, commonly called a law degree. I was fortunate to serve as an intern for 2+ years at the San Francisco Public Defender's office where most of the people that were represented were people of color and poor.
My life experiences enabled me to be truthful in showing empathy, compassion, and understanding to the people I helped represent and I valued that opportunity to be of service to others.
I was born in Los Angles County and grew up in the greater Seattle area in the fabulous Pacific Northwest. I like saltwater fishing and eating seafood. I don't like coffee but love tea and San Francisco sourdough bread.
What else would you like to know about me?
I have 3 sons, all married, with children of their own. For those to whom such things matter, my sons are Caucasian, my daughters-in-law are Caucasian, Hispanic, and South Korean. My eldest works as an assistant minister at his church. My middle son served in the Coast Guard, has his merchant mariner's license, & works for the government. My youngest went to West Point, earned his Ph.D. and is making his career in the Army as a commissioned officer.
I do not tolerate discrimination.
Mi familia es un tapiz hermoso y colorido.
I've been self-employed most of my life and can certainly understand the struggles of owning your own business. My goodness, I have started several small businesses and I know I would not have been able to keep any one of them going during this pandemic. My thoughts are with all of you who are just trying to hold on.
I can also appreciate the protections and benefits of working for a Union. My ex-husband benefitted from a government apprenticeship program and spent his career working at his trade. I wholeheartedly support having apprenticeship programs that teach a trade and provide livable wages with benefits.
Years ago I worked with a construction crew and understand the needs of people working in blue-collar jobs. I worked my way through law school as a self-employed janitor at night. There is a variety of jobs at the West County Wastewater District; management, office personnel, scientific/laboratory, blue-collar, engineers, technicians, operators, various analysis, and environmentalists to list a few. Many of the jobs do not require a college degree and we value experience as well as degrees.How did I end up in West County?
I've moved here to West County several years ago after I married my husband. We got married in a funky little place off Church Street that used to be a hunting lodge and then a religious retreat. My husband has Parkinson's and is retired from the Environmental Protection Agency, where he spent his later years helping the Navajo get their toxic mining sites cleaned up. We had a fun and eclectic gathering of family and friends at our wedding.
We honored my husband's Scottish ancestry at our wedding with our friends representing theirs, Mexico, India, Hungary, Scotland, Canada, with those who love the Renaissance Faire and miss the 1960's in Berkeley.
If there is anything else you would like to know about me, just ask. firstname.lastname@example.org
I respectfully ask for YOUR VOTE on November 3rd.
Les pido respetuosamente SU VOTO el 3 de noviembre.