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Water district wants to annex

Redrawing boundary lines would allow more than 1,000 customers to vote

Posted: February 17, 2009 1:10 a.m.
Updated: February 17, 2009 4:55 a.m.

The Newhall County Water District wants to redraw a boundary line so more than 1,178 of its customers can vote in the next water board election.

The district's board of directors voted in favor of annexing more than 630 acres in Newhall Thursday, in a move that officially recognizes those areas as inside the district's jurisdiction.

The whole point of the annexation is to give these customers a voice and to put them on level footing with fellow customers.

"The big issue here is that these people don't get to vote," said Steve Cole, the water district's general manager.

Ratepayers affected by the annexation live in a dozen identifiable blocks inside a larger area bounded by Lyons Avenue, Newhall Avenue and Placerita Canyon to the north, Highway 14 to the east and Interstate 5 to the south.

In its application to the annexing authority - the Local Agency Formation Commission - the district identifies this larger area as, "existing developed area already being served by Newhall County Water district and is a boundary adjustment."

"It's something we've put on the priority list as things to do," Cole said, when asked why the district was intent on applying to the formation commission now.

Asked why those customers were "off the grid," he said: "A lot of it is historical. Some of these guys are the older customers."

The Newhall County Water district, established in 1953, is one of four water purveyors in the Santa Clarita Valley.

It supplies a population of about 30,000 Santa Clarita Valley residents with more than 9,500 service connections.

Governed by a five-member board of directors, elected at large by residents of the district, its' 34-square mile service area includes portions of the city of Santa Clarita and unincorporated Los Angeles County communities, including Newhall, Canyon Country, Valencia and Castaic.


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