Happy New Year from Kirkwood Meadows PUD!

January 2022
Featured Articles


Thank You for Conserving Propane
Snow Removal Questions Answered
Winter Reminders
Board and Committee Member Changes
Transparency Certificate of Excellence Awarded to KMPUD

Thank You for Conserving Propane

During the record-breaking storm at the end of December, 2021, the District's propane supply reached critical low levels due to a combination of high residency, seasonal demand, and road closures around the Tahoe area, including Highway 88. Both the Carson Spur and the Carson Pass were closed for four days during peak occupancy, isolating Kirkwood and preventing regular propane deliveries. KMPUD requested customers to conserve propane as much as possible. Thanks to your conservation efforts we were able to continuously provide propane for Kirkwood. We truly thank the community for your responsiveness during this critical time!

Snow Removal Questions Answered

KMPUD provides optional snow removal services, on a contractual basis to Homeowner's Associations in Kirkwood. Kirkwood received 180 inches of snow during the month of December, bringing the year-to-date total to 220 inches (measured at the Community Services Building on Loop Road)! The huge storms also resulted in many customer questions about snow removal which we answer below. To track snowfall and temperatures, click HERE.

Q: Why does the Snow Removal Operator sometimes skip my driveway?
A: There are a number of reasons that a Snow Removal Operator will skip a driveway. They may include, but are not limited to:
     -The Operator is completing driveways on the Residency List first.
     -The Operator is removing snow from the roads so driveways can be accessed.
     -There is a vehicle or other object in the driveway preventing snow removal equipment from operating safely.
     -There are vehicles parked on the road close to your driveway preventing snow removal equipment from safely entering your driveway.
     -Your garage door is open.
     -The Operator believes that an unsafe condition exists, in or adjacent to the removal area.

Q: Why is there a berm of snow in front of my garage door?
A: Each driveway is different with various nuances that Snow Removal Operators must be aware of in order to prevent damage to your property and the snow removal equipment. District equipment is not designed to "scrape" the pavement, so there will invariably be some amount of snow remaining after plowing. Additionally, if your driveway has uneven surfaces, posts, overhangs, etc., the Operator must take care to prevent damage to your driveway and property and might not remove the snow as low as other situations. In an effort to reduce property damage, it is the policy of the District to train Snow Removal Operators to remain a safe distance from your house and garage door. Depending on the snow load in your driveway, keeping this safe distance can result in a berm of snow left in front of your garage door.

Q: Is there special snow removal emphasis during big storms to help people reach their Kirkwood home?
A: During big storms Snow Removal Operators focus on keeping roads clear for emergency access and will remove snow from private driveways and parking pads as time, equipment, and staffing permit. If the rate of snow fall is greater than what the Operators and equipment can safely keep up with, they will focus on roads only and remove snow from private driveways and parking pads once the roads can be maintained.

Q: Why are Operators plowing multiple feet from my snow stakes line but then sometimes plowing so close to the snow stakes line that they hit some of the snow stakes?
A: After a large snowfall, Operators will plow a vehicle wide path to your garage and return later to remove snow along the edges as time permits. Sometimes, homeowners allow the snow to build up behind the stakes, bending them into the normal plow area, thereby reducing the snow removal footprint. Homeowners should periodically inspect and correct these deficiencies. Another reason Operators vary in distance plowed from snow stakes is poor visibility. If the Operator cannot see well due to extreme wind or snow fall, the operator will do the best they can to clear a vehicle wide path to your garage, intending to return later under better conditions to clean up.

Q: Why do Operators blow snow on fire hydrants that they need to clear for fire safety?
A: Operators always try to do their best not to blow snow onto fire hydrants but sometimes visibility is poor due to wind and snowfall and they just can't see the fire hydrant.

Q: Why do Operators sometimes blow snow into my pathway from the road to my house?
A: While Operators make every attempt to avoid these pathways to homes, sometimes conditions or necessity exist such that snow is blown into these pathways. Clear marking of the pathways with brightly colored orange snow stakes helps Operators see and avoid the paths, when possible. Please note that when some subdivision maps were approved, snow storage easements along roadways were a condition of the subdivision map approval and the District will place snow in these easements as necessary.

Q: When will the snow that I removed from my car or deck be cleaned up?
A: Please plan on removing snow from your car or deck within 24-hours after a storm and moving your car with great regularity. If you remove snow from your car or deck into your driveway or parking pad more than 24-hours after the storm is over, Operators may not be back to clear the snow until the next storm cycle.

Snow Removal is a difficult job that occurs during the most extreme weather and snow conditions. The District thanks you for your patience and understanding! If you have further questions or comments, please email the District at info@kmpud.com or call (209) 258-4444.

Winter Reminders

Winter Parking Advisory
**
Avoid parking on the street. Park your car in your driveway or paved parking pads. If you must park on the street overnight because there is no space for you in your driveway or on a parking pad, plan on moving your vehicle as soon as possible the following morning.
** If you must park on the street during a storm, stake the four corners of your vehicle with orange snow stakes; these will be easiest for operators to see in the dark in a blizzard. Snow stakes are for sale at the District office for $10 each, while supplies last. Call the District office at (209) 258-4444 to arrange purchase.
** When you park on a paved parking pad, be sure to pull in so that your entire vehicle is past the snow stake line. This is an imaginary line passing between the snow stakes that District Staff has placed on the sides of your road to guide the Snow Removal Operators.
** Please dig your car out and move it within 24-hours after a storm so that the Operators can clear your driveway and parking pads.

Snow Removal Equipment
Snow removal equipment is very dangerous, PLEASE STAY AWAY! Remember that Operators can't always see or hear you, your children, your pets, or your cars, so please do not approach the equipment or block an Operator with your car. No question, concern, or complaint is worth your life! If you need to communicate with the District, the only safe, appropriate way to do so is to call the District office at (209) 258-4444. Office hours are Monday through Friday 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. If you're calling after hours, leave a message and our customer staff will return your call or address your concern as soon as possible.

Residency Notifications
If you have a driveway in East Meadows HOA, Kirkwood Meadows HOA, Juniper Ridge HOA, or Palisades HOA, please utilize the online Residency system to let us know when you are arriving or departing your Kirkwood home at least 24-hours prior to your arrival and/or departure. This will place your driveway on the District's Residency List which is generated every day and distributed to Operators at the beginning of their shift. Please do not overestimate or exaggerate your planned stays in Kirkwood as it only hurts other customers truly in residence.

In order to be included on the Residency List the next time you or your guests plan to be at your Kirkwood home, follow these instructions:
1. Login to your account on www.kmpud.com
2. Hover your curser over the My Account tab (on the left side of the screen) and click Manage Snow Removal in the dropdown menu.
3. Under Residency Notification set you arrival and departure dates in the drop-down menus and enter customer notes if needed.
4. Click Set Notification

Board and Committee Member Changes

On December 10, 2021 new and returning Board Members Peter Dornbrook, Bob Epstein, John Schroeder, and Doug Mitarotonda officially took office. Directors Dornbrook, Epstein, and Schroeder's terms end in December 2025 with Director Mitarotonda's term ending in December 2023. Longtime Board Member Eric Richert retired, marking the end of his tenure as a KMPUD Director, having served on the Board since 2009. Please join the District in thanking Director Richert for his dedicated service to the Kirkwood Community and congratulating Directors Dornbrook, Epstein, Schroeder, and Mitarotonda.

At the same Board of Directors meeting, the Board elected a new slate of officers:

President:             Bob Epstein
Vice-President:     John Schroeder
Treasurer:             Doug Mitarotonda
Secretary:              Peter Dornbrook
Asst. Secretary:    Bertrand Perroud

Directors were also appointed to the District Committees they will serve on:

Finance:                 John Schroeder, Chair; Doug Mitarotonda, Director Member 
Planning:                Doug Mitarotonda, Chair; Bertrand Perroud, Director Member
Operations:             Peter Dornbrook, Chair; Bob Epstein, Director Member
Communications:    Peter Dornbrook, Chair; Bertrand Perroud, Director Member
Personnel:               Bob Epstein, Chair; John Schroeder, Director Member

There are openings for Community members on the Finance, Planning, Operations, and Communications Committees! These Standing Committees were established by the Board to study issues within an assigned area and provide expertise and advice to the Board and Management. Each Committee Charter calls for membership to consist of two Board members and up to five Community members for a two-year term. The District is seeking Kirkwood residents, property owners, and District ratepayers to provide perspective and expertise otherwise not readily available to the Board. The Committees meet once monthly on Zoom. If you are interested in helping shape the District's future and can commit a minimum of 2-3 hours per month, we would like to hear from you. Please send a letter of interest and statement of qualifications to Erik Christeson at echristeson@kmpud.com.

Transparency Certificate of Excellence Awarded to KMPUD

The Kirkwood Meadows Public Utility District (KMPUD) received the District Transparency Certificate of Excellence by the Special District Leadership Foundation (SDLF) in recognition of its outstanding efforts to promote transparency and good governance.  To receive the award, KMPUD demonstrated the completion of 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.

SDLF is an independent non-profit organization formed to promote good governance and best practices among California's special districts through certification, accreditation, and other recognition programs.

Special Districts are independent public agencies that deliver core local services to communities, such as water, wastewater treatment, fire protection, parks and recreation, healthcare, sanitation, mosquito abatement, ports, libraries, public cemeteries, snow removal and more. Districts are established by voters and their funding is approved by voters to meet specific needs through focused service. They can be specially molded to serve large regions or small neighborhoods depending on the need.

KMPUD Board of Directors:
Bob Epstein, President 
John Schroeder, Vice-President
Doug Mitarotonda, Treasurer
Peter Dornbrook, Secretary 
Bertrand Perroud, Assistant Secretary
Website: www.kmpud.com; Phone: (209)258-4444; Email: info@kmpud.com
Kirkwood Meadows Public Utility District is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer

 

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