[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Santa Clarita CA
Partly cloudy
Partly cloudy
Today in
S.C.V. History
January 18
1899 - Martin & Richard Wood buy J.H. Tolfree's Saugus Eating House, rename it Saugus Cafe [story]

With the stroke of his pen Sunday, Gov. Jerry Brown eliminated the Castaic Lake Water Agency and Newhall County Water District and replaced them with a new water agency for the Santa Clarita Valley.

The new agency will assume the duties of CLWA and NCWD and serve the entire valley as both a state water retailer and water wholesaler – except in Val Verde, where customers will continue to purchase water from the L.A. County-controlled Water Works District 36.

CLWA, which formed in 1962 as a state water distributor, has been functioning as both a wholesaler and retailer in part of its service area since 1999 when it purchased the once-private Santa Clarita Water Co. from Saugus homebuilder Bill Bonelli’s heirs. In 2012 it also bought The Newhall Land and Farming Co.’s water retailer, Valencia Water Co., which has continued to function as a separate retail arm of CLWA. Both acquisitions survived court challenges by local environmental activists who have questioned CLWA’s water supply projections.

Newhall County Water District was originally Newhall Water Co. in 1913. It became a public agency in 1953 when it still served only Newhall. As urban sprawl occurred in recent decades, NCWD started serving unconnected “pockets” of the SCV – notably Castaic, Tesoro del Valle and eastern Canyon Country – with its own patchwork of water transmission lines and pumping stations crisscrossing Valencia and Santa Clarita Water territory.

Now, with the exception of Water Works District 36, all will be one entity with a 15-person board of whom 14 will be publicly elected. (One seat is reserved for a county District 36 representative.)

“Thank you to Senator Scott Wilk, Castaic Lake Water Agency and Newhall County Water District for your vision and hard hard work. I know we have additional work ahead,” NCWD Board President Maria Gutzeit said in a social media post.

“I think you have to salute the board of directors for (CLWA and NCWD) to realize what’s in the best interest of our ratepayers,” Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, told KHTS AM-1220, “and for them to come together after years of litigation to create this new agency.”

The two agencies had been at odds. NCWD was suing CLWA over a hike in the wholesale water rate. At one point, CLWA countersued, accusing NCWD of a procedural violation. The countersuit was thrown out, but the underlying rate dispute continued. NCWD challenged the legality of CLWA’s acquisition of Valencia Water Co. and accused CLWA of raising rates to fund the purchase. Ultimately the two agencies decided to settle their differences through a merger.

Brown signed the bill without issuing a public statement.

Wilk’s legislation, SB634, cancels the prior CLWA organizing law and authorizes the new agency to “provide, sell, manage, and deliver surface water, groundwater and recycled water at retail or wholesale within the agency’s territory.”

All assets of CLWA and NCWD become property of the new “Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency,” and all employees of CLWA and NCWD are automatically employees of the new agency. The new agency “may continue to levy, impose, or fix and collect any previously authorized charge, fee, assessment or tax approved, imposed and levied by the Castaic Lake Water Agency or the Newhall County Water District, or both, including but not limited to any rates, fees and charges for the provision of water.” The new agency must continue to provide state water to District 36.

The law requires the new agency to dissolve Valencia Water Co. as a separate entity and absorb it in the first half of 2018.

For electoral purposes, the new agency is divided into three geographic regions. Initially, its 15 members will be the five elected members of the NCWD board and the nine elected members of the CLWA board, plus one appointed seat for District 36.

“Economic impact and efficiency studies found that the new district will generate millions of dollars in savings, create more transparency for the ratepayer and enhance environmental and watershed protections,” Wilk said in a previous statement.

“Late last year the boards of the Castaic Lake Water Agency and Newhall County Water District voted to dissolve the two agencies and create a new valley-wide water agency,” Wilk’s statement said. “Senate Bill 634 is the fruit of those negotiations.” The legislation “brings a large, private water company into public ownership (Valencia Water Co.), adding transparency requirements and voter control where none exists today.”


Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.


  1. Oh boy more big government! Watch the rate increases.

  2. A monopoly in water delivery services? What could go wrong?

  3. Dean Wise Dean Wise says:

    Socialist State rule

    • Joseph Schwartz says:

      #Dean Wise before blaming this on “socialist” rule it appears you’ve overlooked that this was proposed by Mr Will, a guy with an “R” after his name and probably offended now that you called him a socialist.

  4. Mickey Valenti says:

    Another change signed into effect without the input or approval of middle class taxpayers who can no longer afford to shoulder the burden of nonsensical changes like this.

  5. Is it truly a monopoly? Did anyone get a choice as to which agency previously got the water to your house?

  6. John Whitlaw John Whitlaw says:

    So they can charge us more for our water with a 27 percent increase our the next 3 years already coming where does it stop

  7. Kurt Buck Kurt Buck says:

    SCWC are a bunch of crooks.

  8. Shouldn’t it have been us voting for or against!What a bunch of crooks!

  9. David Stolp David Stolp says:

    Is there no end to their shame

  10. Brian says:

    If Brown signed it then it’s great for the never seen a rate increase I didn’t like CA government, and crappy
    for us. Hang onto your wallets.

  11. waterwatcher says:

    With the stoke of his pen, he eliminated the best functioning water district in this valley without a public vote and legitimized a corporate water grab for Lennar/Fivepoint for Newhall Ranch. You would think that a Dem legislature would look more closely at a Republican bill, but apparently they don’t bother when it comes from a Republican-controlled community. And of course Brown would sign it with his sister sitting on the Fivepoint Board making #122,000 a year.

  12. Karen Blixen Karen Blixen says:

    Brown is a Buffoon!

  13. jim says:

    Ahah! But all of us did approve this sweeping takeover of all the water coming into the SCV and all of the water that actually is IN the SCV.

    We did it by not paying attention, and by not listening to the few voices out there that tried to warn us. And because not enough of us did any of that, all the chances to stop this steamroller were lost.

    This bandwagon has been rolling for two years (longer if you count the take-over of SCWD and Valencia Water), and they used the best possible method for success; they down-played and fast-forwarded every single step so that no one would notice.

    And most of us didn’t notice at all. And don’t blame Gov. Ancient Moonbeam for this since he’s only doing what he has been doing for a long time. And that is making California Better – for folks like him.

    And I don’t mean Democrats, either; I mean the ruling class of rich, politically connected and deeply embedded folks who actually run this state. Regardless of the (D) or (R) behind their names, they are all playing in the 2nd biggest high stakes poker game in this Country.

    The Game? Consolidation of power, through legal and sub rosa means such as harmless-sounding legislation that actually puts more local issues under The States’s control.

    So, how did they do this? How did this happen?

    Nobody paid attention, except for a few dozen folks who feel so strongly about these issues that they MADE time to keep track. And they wrote commentaries here that nobody read.

    Go ahead and focus your attention for more than 5 minutes and search the archives here on SCVNews.com. This is not a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention.

    Except of course, 98% of the SCV won’t do that, since only about 5 percent care enough to take the time and energy to find out what is really going on.

    But wait! There is a new article here at SCVnews.com that will let you know everything about what is going to be so much better! Just go here: https://scvnews.com/2017/10/16/next-step-water-agency-officials-to-share-merger-details/

    And I’m sure you will feel comforted that these fine people are looking out for your best interests and welfare here in StepfordClarita Valley.

Leave a Comment

SCV NewsBreak
Thursday, Jan 18, 2018
Cold Weather Alert Issued for SCV
LOS ANGELES – The County Interim Health Officer is issuing a Cold Weather Alert due to the National Weather Service’s forecast for low temperatures. Wind chill temperatures are expected to be below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Affected areas include:
Thursday, Jan 18, 2018
Crime Blotter: Burglary, Grand Theft Auto in Saugus
Here is the Saugus (Zone 4) Public Safety and Crime Prevention Information for the week of Jan. 8:
Thursday, Jan 18, 2018
Crime Blotter: Shoplifting, Burglary, Grand Theft Auto in Valencia
Here is the Valencia Crime Information and Public Safety report for the week of Jan. 1:
Keep Up With Our Facebook

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
In an exciting conclusion of events, approximately 40 inmates who participated in the Education Based Incarceration program received either a high school diploma or certificate of completion for vocational training.
Largest Class of Inmates in Education Based Incarceration Program Graduates
The Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency (SCV Water) has selected its inaugural leadership to preside over the launch of the newly formed water provider.
SCV Water Selects Inaugural Leadership
Well V-205, located near McBean Parkway and Valencia Blvd., was voluntarily removed from service in April 2012 when perchlorate was detected in low concentrations, below the Detection Level for Reporting (DLR).
Perchlorate at Out-of-Service Well Reaches Actionable Level
The Santa Clarita City Council will consider purchasing the 4,598-square-foot building Roger Dunn Golf Shop building in Newhall when the council meets next week.
City Eyeing Purchase of Roger Dunn Building
Here are the Santa Clarita arts-related events for Jan. 20 and Jan. 25:
Jan. 20, 25: Santa Clarita Arts Calendar
Following in the footsteps of her grandfather, dad, mom and several other family members, Erin Oxhorn-Gilpin always wanted to be a teacher.
CSUN Alumna Nabs Teacher of the Year
Legendary Band, "The Chieftains," will celebrate their 55th Anniversary with a performance at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center (SCPAC), Saturday, Feb. 24, at 8:00 p.m.
Feb. 24: The Chieftains 55th Anniversary Tour
SEATTLE - Amazon reviewed 238 proposals from across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico to host HQ2, the company’s second headquarters in North America.
Los Angeles on Short List of Amazon’s HQ2
The Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District Board of Directors will hold its Regular Meeting Friday at 11:30 a.m.
Jan. 19: SCV Sanitation District Regular Meeting
Kevin Young has been selected as the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer-in-Residence. Young will conduct workshops with CalArts students in the MFA Creative Writing Program and present public readings, which will be held at CalArts on Feb. 15 at 7:00 p.m. and at REDCAT in Downtown Los Angeles on Feb. 16 at 8:30 p.m.
The New Yorker’s Poetry Editor Selected as CalArts 2018 Writer-in-Residence
LOS ANGELES – The County Interim Health Officer is issuing a Cold Weather Alert due to the National Weather Service’s forecast for low temperatures. Wind chill temperatures are expected to be below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Affected areas include:
Cold Weather Alert Issued for SCV
Here is the Valencia Crime Information and Public Safety report for the week of Jan. 1:
Crime Blotter: Shoplifting, Burglary, Grand Theft Auto in Valencia
Here is the Saugus (Zone 4) Public Safety and Crime Prevention Information for the week of Jan. 8:
Crime Blotter: Burglary, Grand Theft Auto in Saugus
Here is the Stevenson Ranch (Zone 3) Public Safety and Crime Information Report for the week of Jan. 8:
Crime Blotter: Attempted Robbery, Grand Theft Auto, Burglary in Stevenson Ranch
Here is the Newhall (Zone 6) Public Safety and Crime Prevention Information for the week of Jan. 8:
Crime Blotter: Commercial Burglary, Vehicle Burglary, Grand Theft in Newhall
1899 - Martin & Richard Wood buy J.H. Tolfree's Saugus Eating House, rename it Saugus Cafe [story]
The dismantling of a multi-state drug trafficking organization that used the U.S. Postal Service to mail packages of crystal methamphetamine and marijuana from California to traffickers in Pennsylvania since at least April 2016 - and the arrests of five leaders who spearheaded the corrupt organization, including two from the Santa Clarita Valley - were announced Wednesday by Montgomery County (Penn.) District Attorney Kevin R. Steele.
2 from SCV Netted in Major East Coast Drug Bust
With The Master's University's 2018 baseball season about to begin, TMU Sports Information Director Mason Nesbitt offers a preview.
TMU Previews Mustangs’ 2018 Baseball Season
Several CalArtians are among the Chicago-based United States Artists' annual fellowship class of 45 artists and collaboratives who will each receive an unrestricted $50,000 grant for their respective art practices.
CalArtians Among United States Artists’ New Fellowship Class
The TMU Mustangs' men's basketball team, on a 17-game winning streak, has moved up to No. 4 in the NAIA Division 1 Men's Basketball Coaches' Poll.
TMU Men’s Hoops Team Up to No. 4 in NAIA Coaches’ Poll
Tuesday night's 93-37 rout of St. Katherine University was more than just a non-conference tune-up for the TMU women's basketball team.
Master’s Women’s Hoops Team Shoots Down Firebirds
iLEAD Schools will honor College of the Canyons Chancellor Dr. Dianne Van Hook with its 'Vision in Education' award at the Santa Clarita Valley International School’s annual benefit dinner on March 10.
iLEAD to Honor COC’s Van Hook with 2018 ‘Vision in Education’ Award
Los Angeles County Fire Department firefighters quickly extinguished a 1/4-acre brush fire in Newhall early Wednesday afternoon.
Small Brush Fire in Newhall Quickly Doused
Los Angeles County Assessor Jeffrey Prang and the county Board of Supervisors have proclaimed January "Homeowners' Exemption Awareness Month" promote the county's property tax savings program.
County Officials:  January is ‘Homeowners’ Tax Exemption Awareness Month’
In an effort to provide support to local communities affected by the recent hurricanes in the Caribbean, and after the sell-out of the inaugural group on the January 20 Crown Princess sailing, Princess Cruises and Fathom Travel are adding two additional spring sailings in 2018.
Princess Adds More Caribbean Cruises for Spring 2018
California State University, Northridge journalism professor David Blumenkrantz documents the stories of the homeless of Los Angeles in an art exhibition titled “Street Scenes: Making the Homeless Count,” on display at the San Fernando Valley Arts and Cultural Center in Tarzana through Jan. 27.
CSUN Prof Uses Grant to Illuminate Homelessness in LA
Host College of the Canyons rallied from a nine-point halftime deficit to defeat the visiting Seahawks of Los Angeles Harbor College 96-82 on Saturday evening.
Cougars Win Third Straight with 96-82 Victory Over L.A. Harbor
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is stepping up bike and pedestrian safety enforcement operations in the Santa Clarita Valley today, officials announced this morning.
Deputies Step Up Pedestrian, Bike Safety Enforcement Today
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station deputies checking on businesses after hours arrested two people on drug charges in separate incidents in Canyon Country on Monday and Newhall on Tuesday.
Deputies Check Businesses After Hours, Arrest 2 on Drug Charges
A Canyon Country man was killed and three people injured in a high-speed traffic collision on Golden Valley Road at Dorothy Street in the unincorporated area of the Santa Clarita Valley late Tuesday night, according to the CHP.
High-Speed Crash in SCV Leaves 1 Dead, 3 Injured
The U.S. Justice Department is appealing a court order that blocked the Trump administration from shutting down a program that shields more than 700,000 young immigrants from deportation.
Justice Dept. to Appeal Ruling That Blocked DACA Shutdown
A Los Angeles County sheriff’s officer was arrested Tuesday and charged with taking bribes 'to oversee the delivery of narcotics,' federal prosecutors said.
Dirty LA Sheriff’s Officer Busted for Drugs, FBI Says
The cost of the first phase of California’s high-speed rail project through the state’s Central Valley has soared by 35 percent to $10.6 billion, officials disclosed Tuesday.
California Bullet Train Cost Climbs by $2.8 Billion
Dozens of attorneys general including California's filed a petition Tuesday challenging the Federal Communication Commission’s recent decision to roll back net neutrality rules.
State AG’s Sue FCC to Block Net Neutrality Rollback
1994, 4:31 a.m. - Magnitude 6.7 Northridge earthquake rocks Santa Clarita Valley [video]
More than 4,000 newborns in Los Angeles, including some in the SCV, will be sporting little red caps, instead of the traditional pink or blue, as part of the American Heart Association’s Little Hats, Big Hearts program aimed at bringing attention to heart disease.
Newborns to Sport Little Red Caps as Part of AHA Campaign