April 17, 2014 (Santee) – Padre Dam Municipal Water District 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. The award was presented to the Board of Directors at the April 16th board meeting.
“This award is a testament to Padre Dam’s commitment to open government,” said Allen Carlisle, General Manager/CEO. “The entire district staff is to be commended for their contributions that empower the public with information and facilitate engagement and oversight.”
In order to receive the award, a special district must demonstrate the completion of eight 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.
Padre Dam also fulfilled fifteen website requirements, including providing readily available information to the public, such as board agendas, past minutes, current district budget, and the most recent financial audit.
Finally, the district must demonstrate outreach to its constituents that engages the public in its governance, through district newsletters and a community engagement project.
Padre Dam provides water, wastewater, recycled water and recreation services to 100,000 residents in the San Diego suburbs of Santee, El Cajon, Lakeside, Flinn Springs, Harbison Canyon, Blossom Valley, Alpine, Dehesa and Crest. The District is a public agency with policies and procedures directed by an elected five-member Board of Directors. Padre Dam’s infrastructure is worth close to $1 billion and has an annual operating and capital budget of $64.6 million. It imports 100% of treated water supply and treats two million gallons per day (MGD) of wastewater at their Water Recycling Facility.
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, fire protection, parks and recreation, healthcare, sanitation, mosquito abatement, ports, libraries, public cemeteries and more. Districts are established by voters and their funding is approved by voters in order to meet specific needs through focused service. They can be specially molded to serve large regions or small neighborhoods depending on the need.