Catalina Island
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January 21, 2018 - 8:51am

Articles by Jesus A. Ruiz

Avalon residents can expect a 50 percent cut in water usage, which is stage three of water rationing, to be pushed back as far as the middle of October of this year.
Jeff Lawrence, project manager for Edison, reported the extended date this week during Avalon’s City Council meeting on Tuesday Aug. 18.
Lawrence also said Edison was preparing a letter to send to the California Public Utilities Commission about possibly deferring stage three longer due to the desalination unit to be installed at the Pebbly Beach Desalination plant in the near future.

An oh-too familiar sight on Avalon’s shores will be retiring from its flying fish excursions and public services sometime in September.

“Blanche W.,” or simply “The Blanche,” which was originally  named after William Wrigley’s granddaughter, will see out its last public voyage along the Catalina coast next month because “it’s time to move on,” said Collier Cook, who’s VP of Activities for the Santa Catalina Island Company.

Au revoir Blanche.

The streets of Avalon were lit up with over a thousand people from across the country who were “up for whatever” last weekend.
Positive vibes, spontaneous energy and great entertainment filled Front Street, the Casino and Descanso Beach for Whatever, USA, which was a success for both contestant winners and Island residents.
For those in attendance, they were treated with performances by Diplo, G-Eazy, Kip Moore, Snoop Dogg, Girl Talk, Postmodern Jukebox, Lil Jon and much more.

As the thought of 50 percent water rationing looms over the Island, Southern California Edison has begun drafting ideas to help alleviate the water needs going into the next stage of water reduction.
At this week’s City Council meeting, Edison presented various short and long term solutions that would help offset the need to cut the Island’s water usage in half.

Avalon’s involvement in Avalon Freight Service’s application before the California Public Utilities Commission will continue.
The City Council voted in favor of retaining its concerned party status in the matter this week.
What the city keeping its party status means is “(Avalon would) like to be apprised of what’s going on and in the future potentially make some comments on the application,” said City Attorney Scott Campbell.

Attention: Story Correction
This is a correction to last week’s article on the spill at Fall Canyon. The article should’ve read that the Baker containment tanks located at Falls Canyon overflowed, not the desalination plant. There is no desal plant in Falls Canyon. The water that was spilled was produced at the plant located at Pebbly Beach, but the water overflowed at the Baker tanks. The following is a corrected headline and a corrected introduction to the story.
“Falls Canyon Baker tanks spills over

Vons will have to wait until Aug. 4 to know if they can go ahead with the construction of a new supermarket on the Island.

The Vons appeal hearing date was pushed back to August from the upcoming April 21 date due in part to Avalon’s City Council wanting more clarity on water allocation for the new Vons market.

“If I’m going to vote on something like that I’m going to make sure everything is correct,” said Councilman Richard Hernandez at a special Avalon City Council meeting on April 7.

Stage three water rationing in Avalon is expected to occur as early as August and as late as October of this year, according to Jeff Lawrence, who’s Southern California Edison’s project manager on the Island.

Stage three rationing takes effect on the Island when the water level in the Middle Ranch reservoir hits the 200-acre-foot mark.

As of Feb 19, the water level at the Thompson reservoir has dropped 2 acre feet and currently sits at a level of 273 acre feet, according to Lawrence.

Breaking news: Southern California Edison officials have decided against shipping water from the Million Gallon Tank in Two Harbors to the Wrigley Reservoir that serves Avalon until a city-employed consultant has tested the water. Southern California Edison sent the information to the Catalina Islander for the information to be included in the print edition of this story.