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Cost for development paid for by residents

Posted: January 12, 2011 11:10 p.m.
Updated: January 13, 2011 4:30 a.m.

This letter is in response to comments made in a Jan. 6 Signal opinion column from Lynne Plambeck titled “Groups filed suit to help save our river.”
The author asks the question, “who will be paying for the infrastructure for the Newhall Ranch project, especially the salt cleanup?”
The developer, Newhall Land Development LLC, will pay for the wastewater infrastructure to serve the Newhall Ranch development.
A 2002 agreement between Newhall Land and the Sanitation District survived the bankruptcy, and it sets conditions for the first 6,000 homes in Newhall Ranch to temporarily discharge wastewater to the Valencia Water Reclamation Plant.
The conditions include: payment of the standard connection fee (fair share of the cost of the existing infrastructure), and transfer of title of the 22-acre Newhall Ranch WRP site to the sanitation district.
Newhall Ranch residents also will pay the Sanitation District a service charge to recover the full cost of treating their wastewater at the Valencia WRP.
Prior to building more than 6,000 homes, Newhall Land must construct the Newhall Ranch WRP and the plant must be sized to treat all the wastewater generated by development.
The cost for operating the Newhall Ranch WRP will be paid by the residents of Newhall Ranch.
The Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control board already has issued a permit for the Newhall Ranch WRP with a chloride limit of 100 milligrams per liter.
Newhall Land and Farming Company will construct an advanced wastewater-treatment plant utilizing reverse-osmosis technology to meet this chloride limit.
 The reverse osmosis process produces a salty waste byproduct that is called brine.
Newhall Land and Farming Company has applied for a permit from the U.S. EPA to dispose of the brine from the Newhall Ranch WRP using deep-well injection.
The Sanitation District has investigated using deep well injection for disposal of brine as part of the Chloride total maximum daily load studies for Santa Clarita but has no involvement in Newhall Land and Farming Company’s proposal for deep-well injection.
Implementation of the Newhall Ranch development will not alleviate nor add to the financial burden for Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District’s compliance with the Chloride total maximum daily load. Newhall Land and Farming Company and its customers will pay for treatment of wastewater generated by Newhall Ranch.


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