Hank White, the GDPUD General Manager Making False Statements During Public Hearings
DALE MILLER, Cool, June 20, 2012Over the past five months, Mr. White has been asked repeatedly why we could not retrofit the Auburn Lake Trails Water Treatment Plant with a new filter system as required by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). He has staunchly maintained that the CDPH denied GDPUD’s request to do so. One example of this was at the February 22 hearing at Golden Sierra High School. Karen B. asked “And you can’t do that same kind of retrofit (as the Walton Lake Treatment Plant) to Auburn Lake Trails?” Hank’s reply was “That’s correct. We’ve evaluated the potential for that, taken that evaluation to the state and they denied the request.”
Since that meeting, numerous Public Record Act requests have been made for the documentation to verify this statement. Mr. White refused to acknowledge any of those requests until after the Prop. 218 rate increase passed and the GDPUD board decided to build a new treatment plant. On May 8, Mr. White finally responded to my request with a simple,”I am not aware of a document fitting that description.”
The board has also been provided with documentation from CDPH stating that, “GDPUD can still modify the ALT plant to provide direct filtration … This would certainly be less expensive than building a new water treatment plant, and would meet the directives of our order.” — Carl Lischeske (CDPH-DDWEM, Dec. 16, 2008).
The Feb. 22 meeting audio file is available on http://flushthewaste.com/ as well as numerous other audio files documenting additional proof of Mr. White’s false statements. Please check it out for yourself. Based on his statements, the Prop. 218 rate increase passed and we are now going to spend over $15 million dollars with interest over 40 years for a new treatment plant that could have been fixed with a $450,000 filter system. How else have Mr. White and this board misled us? Is there a reason that after Ms. Otermat started to delve into the financial records and found over 60 instances of misappropriations and wrong doings, that Mr. White and director Neely have launched a recall against her? What else are they afraid she will find? The saga continues…
Selected Story Comments:
By now it's becoming fairly obvious why the intense hostility toward Kathy Otermat. One honest person DOES make a difference, not a difference celebrated by those on the take. But less clear is why GDPUD favored the very expensive $15M option (plus interest).
I happened to read this letter and wanted to offer my 2 cents. In my position I deal with state agencies on a daily basis. One thing I can say about the state is that they document everything and I've never seen one piece of correspondence with less than 6 other cc's to other managers and other departments. If the state denied a request there's NO WAY there would not be documentation to back this up. Dale - I would highly suggest that you send the same California Public Records Act Request to Carl Lischeske at California Department of Public Health, if you have not already done so. THAT my friend would be the smoking gun to confirm your GM lied to the public and the board. Since this is in regard to a very expensive long-term financial commitment, I would say the board would have grounds for firing the GM and I"m sure the public who he lied to would support this decision. Keep up the good work to both you and Ms. Otermat in this unfortunate continuing saga.