CSDA AwardIn recognition of its efforts to promote transparency and good governance, Yorba Linda Water District (YLWD) has been awarded the District Transparency Certificate of Excellence by the Special District Leadership Foundation (SDLF).

“Public service and transparency should go hand-in-hand,” said YLWD Board President, Bob Kiley, who accepted the award on behalf of the District. “YLWD goes the extra mile to ensure that District business is open and clear to the public we serve and that information is easily and readily available to anyone who is interested.”

To be considered for the award a special district must demonstrate the completion of at least eight essential governance transparency requirements, including conducting ethics training for all board members, properly conducting open and public meetings, and filing financial transactions and compensation reports to the State Controller in a timely manner. YLWD also fulfilled fifteen website requirements including providing readily available information to the public including: board agendas, past minutes, current district budget and the most recent financial audit.   Finally, the District must demonstrate outreach to its constituents that engages the public in its governance through a regular direct newsletter and special community engagement project.

MarcHe had barely unpacked his suitcase before coming to work at the crack of dawn on his first day as new General Manager of Yorba Linda Water District.   It’s been a busy first week for Andrew Marcantonio, who goes as “Marc”. He officially started as YLWD GM on September 3rd. He has been ushered from one meeting to the next, introduced to employees and representatives from other Orange County water agencies and cities ever since.

“It’s a bit overwhelming but exciting at the same time,” says Marcantonio. “It’s been a flurry of new faces and names. But that comes with being the new guy, from out of town.”

While it’ll take some time for him to get to know the players and the acronyms, Marcantonio is no stranger to Orange County having lived here for 13 of his 23 years of service in the U.S. Army, where he retired as a Lieutenant Colonel. His distinguished military career in many vast leadership roles made him the unanimous choice of the YLWD Board of Directors for the appointment.  

“He knows the water business but the thing that’s most impressive about Marc, he’s a natural leader,” said Board President Bob Kiley. “We as a Board look forward to him leading this District and taking us to the next level.”

Marcantonio is the first YLWD GM to be hired from outside of the District in more than 20 years - far outside, actually. Marcantonio drove down Labor Day weekend from his home in the state of Washington. He brings with him a dozen years of water utilities management, heading up Mt. View-Edgewood Water Company. While water politics in California are a different beast than in Washington, where water supply is abundant, Marcantonio promises to be a quick study. He also leaves as President of the Regional Water Cooperative of Pierce County, an association of 25 water and wastewater agencies in the Greater Seattle Area.  

“Yorba Linda Water District is an agency with exciting opportunities, and I am proud to be a part of the team,” said Marcantonio.  “I look forward to working together with the Board of Directors, staff, and the broader community for the benefit of our customers.”

After retiring from the Army, Marcantonio worked as a Fisheries Biologist. He is also a professional fisherman and outdoor writer. It’s a welcome return home for his wife Roe, a native of La Habra. Their daughter lives here as well.

“This is where we wanted to be. This is where our family is. We have good friends here. This will feel like home very fast.”

The Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) has awarded Yorba Linda Water District the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for its Fiscal Year 2012/2013 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report.

“Transparency and accountability are two critical components of efficient government,” said Board President, Bob Kiley. “We are very proud to accept this award from the GFOA for exceeding reporting standards in the preparation and presentation of our financial annual report.”

The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR), is prepared after June 30, as a year-end summary. The report includes an overview of District operations, audited financial statements, and statistical and demographic data spanning the last 10 years to show how the environment has changed over that period.

“We adopt a budget each spring, and use it as a planning document for the current fiscal year,” said Finance Manager, Delia Lugo. “The CAFR is a tool to look back at how well we executed the plan. This award highlights the importance of presenting financial information beyond industry standards as part of being fiscally responsible to our ratepayers.”

The Government Finance Officers Association is a professional association serving approximately 17,500 government finance professionals. The GFOA established the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting Program (CAFR Program) to encourage and assist state and local governments to go beyond the minimum requirements of generally accepted accounting principles to prepare comprehensive annual financial reports in the spirit of transparency and full disclosure and then to recognize individual governments that succeed in achieving that goal. The Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in the area of government accounting and financial reporting.

This is the fourth consecutive year the District has received this award.

In response to the State Water Resources Control Board issuing mandatory water conservation regulations last month, the Yorba Linda Water District Board of Directors has adopted a resolution entering Stage One of the District’s Conservation Ordinance. This will help reduce demand on current statewide water supplies and extend water reserves if the drought continues for an extended period.

“It is important for everyone in the state to reduce their water use,” said Ric Collett, Vice President of the YLWD Board of Directors, “While we here in Southern California have made substantial infrastructure investments, it is a statewide issue and it’s important that we all do our part to save water.”

Collett, later asked staff to bring back to the Board options for enhancing the current rebates available through Municipal Water District of Orange County. The District currently offers financial incentives to customers to encourage the installation of high efficiency clothes washers and toilets, and turf replacement. “Let’s see if we can up the ante for our customers to encourage more participation in conservation efforts like the turf removal programs,” said Collett.

YLWD has made significant investments reducing reliance on imported water from 50% in 2000 to 30% in 2014, in addition to increasing storage, and investing in water conservation. These investments have not only reduced long-term costs to YLWD’s rate-payers, but have also provided increased water supply reliability for YLWD customers.

The Stage One watering restrictions officially go into place September 2nd.  Information on the District's Conservation Ordinance can be found here.

Yorba Linda Water District (YLWD) has announced that Andrew “Marc” Marcantonio has been named its new General Manager, beginning Wednesday, September 3, 2014. Mr. Marcantonio has a distinguished career in executive leadership and utility management with a broad environmental, regulatory, and operational background from both the public and private sector.

“Marc Marcantonio brings years of experience in all aspects of management and is respected nationally, in the water community,” said YLWD President Bob Kiley. “The Board and I look forward to working with him and to the leadership he will provide.”

Mr. Marcantonio comes to YLWD from Mt. View-Edgewood Water Company, in Washington State, where he previously served as General Manager for more than eleven years. In addition, he leaves as President of the Regional Water Cooperative of Pierce County, an association of 25 water and wastewater agencies in the Greater Seattle Area.   Mr. Marcantonio retired from the Army as a Lieutenant Colonel, after 23 years of Active Duty including serving 13 years with the California National Guard.   He and his wife have two grown children. After retirement from the Army, Mr. Marcantonio worked as a Fisheries Biologist. He is also a professional fisherman and outdoor writer.