Santa Paula: Planning Commission Re-Elects Officers and Approves Cross-Town Water Pipeline Project

By Sheryl Hamlin

Officer Election

Mr. Gail Ikerd (Chair) and Mr. Fred Robinson (Vice Chairman) were re-elected to their positions unanimously, thus saving the city the cost of new placards.
Cross-Town Water Pipeline Project

The item before the Planning Commission was the approval of the Mitigated Negative Declaration (MND) which had been circulated for public comments between November 16, 2015 and December 15, 2015. Four comments were received. To read the full staff report, click here.

From the staff report, the following describes the areas affected by this major project:


John Ilasin, Capital Projects Engineer, presented the staff report and answered questions. He said that an initial engineering hydraulic analysis confirmed the need in 2005. Then in 2013 another analysis, the project was sized. Note the project is now at the design stage which will precede construction.

Commissioner Somers asked about pipe sizing to which Mr. Ilasin responded that the pipe size had increased to 20” in 2013 from the original design of 16”. He also said that the difference between 20” and 24” was hydrologically negligible.

Mr. Ilasin explained that there will be a public bidding process for the construction and that as a public entity, the city was obliged to take the lowest bid, although for the deign, there was more flexibility to allow the city to take into consideration qualifications of the firm. The city will follow the “public contract code process” and make sure that the bids are responsive to the project.

The estimated cost of construction is $3,000,000. There was no estimated cost of design given nor was this asked.

Commissioner Demers asked about the timeline. Mr. Ilasin said that the design would take between 9 to 12 months because there was a considerable amount of coordinating with utilities. The construction estimate he suggested was 9 months based on the three months it took to construct the 10th street work.

Jana Minsk, Planning Director, reminded the commissioners that there was a Mitigation Management Schedule included for such things as cultural assets.

The motion to approve was seconded and passed unanimously. The project will now go to city council for final approval.

Questions not asked:

  • What is the budget for the design phase?
  • Will the utilities be asked to include cabling for upgraded Internet services?
  • Will the trenches include purple pipes for distribution of recycled water?
  • How construction and open trenches will effect the already stressed area around Santa Paula High School?
  • Potential impacts on historic properties in the path of this pipeline?

To make comments on this project, please see contact information here:



Planning Director Minsk reported on the Williams Homes project on Ojai Road saying the ending date for public comments is March 8, 2016. Comments should go to Chris Williamson, AICP, contract planner, who was formerly with the City of Oxnard. His email is: [email protected]. The project will be noticed when it is scheduled to appear before the Planning Commission.

Director Minsk also reported on industrial development on the west end of Santa Paula. She said the economy is improving, so the department is busy.

She said there were over 300 responses received about the General Plan update, which have been forwarded to the planning consultant, John Douglas, who is reviewing the responses. There is no date for the next planning session.

There was nothing presented about East Area I.


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Steve Nash
Steve Nash
5 years ago

The difference in the cross-sectional area of a 20″ and 24″ pipe are (if we remember our geometry lessons of A=πr2 being the area of a circle) 314 sq. in. for the 20″ diameter pipe and 452 sq. in. for the 24″ diameter pipe. Is this “hydrologically negligible”? Not in my book. One more reason never to trust staff.