Legislature Approves Rendon Audit of Central Basin Water District

For immediate release:

State Auditor Will Investigate Agency’s Operations and Spending

Sacramento, CA – Assemblyman Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) and the Joint Legislative Audit Committee today directed the State Auditor to investigate the Central Basin Municipal Water District’s operations and use of public funds.

“Government must work for all residents,” Rendon said. “This audit ensures Central Basin is operating and spending public funds in a manner that fulfills its mission of serving Southeast L.A. County residents with quality drinking water.”

Over the past decade, numerous media reports and public inquiries have called the credibility of Central Basin into question. A 90-day review of the agency by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors in 2014 revealed a number of troubling discoveries about Central Basin’s continued viability, including:

  • Sales of imported water continue to decline (sales declined nine percent in FY 2013-14) while fees rise (administrative fee paid by users quadrupled in 19 years, from $15 in 1992-93 to $70 in 2011-12)
  • Legal conflicts with other water agencies have resulted in substantial legal expenses, exceeding $200,000 in some months
  • Debt ratio coverage for bond commitments have been as low as 0.20

The Joint Legislative Audit Committee unanimously approved Rendon’s audit request, which is co-authored by Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens), Senator Ed Hernández (D-West Covina), and Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens). The audit will be completed in October or November 2015.

Read the full audit request here.

Assemblyman Anthony Rendon is serving in his second term representing the 63rd Assembly District, which includes the cities and communities of Bell, Cudahy, Hawaiian Gardens, Lakewood, North Long Beach, Lynwood, Maywood, Paramount, and South Gate. Rendon is chairman of the Assembly Committee on Utilities and Commerce and serves on the following committees: Water, Parks and Wildlife; Natural Resources; Public Employees, Retirement and Social Security; and Appropriations.