Posts

Fallbrook Public Utility District changes the painted numbers on its Rattlesnake Tank to reflect the year incoming seniors at Fallbrook High School will graduate. Photo: Fallbrook Public Utility District

Fallbrook Rattlesnake Tank Artwork Honors High School Seniors

Each year, the Fallbrook Public Utility District’s water storage tank uphill from South Mission Road is painted with new numbers. There’s a story about local Fallbrook history behind the fresh design on the “Rattlesnake Tank.”

The Fallbrook Public Utility District changes the painted numbers on the tank to reflect the year incoming seniors at Fallbrook High School will graduate. Staff recently painted over the “20,” changing it to “21” to welcome the graduating class of 2021.

The reason for the annual external makeover dates back 35 years. Prior to painting the tank, Fallbrook High seniors took on a longstanding dare. They would climb up the hill in the middle of the night, scale the tank and then paint it themselves.

“Since it’s a long way down, our staff of more than 35 years ago became concerned for their safety,” said Fallbrook’s Noelle Denke. “So we installed a fence around the tank.”

But it didn’t deter the energetic students. Instead, they just began jumping the fence in the middle of the night. So the District struck a deal with the students. If they would stop risking their safety for the dare, the district would safely paint the tank every year to commemorate them.

“And we’ve been doing it ever since,” said Denke.

Safely saluting seniors with 25-foot high signage

Fallbrook Public Utility District utility workers Colter Shannon and Bryan Wagner do the honors changing the painted numbers on Rattlesnake Tank for the Class of 2021. Photo: Fallbrook Public Utility District

Fallbrook Public Utility District utility workers Colter Shannon and Bryan Wagner do the honors of changing the painted numbers on Rattlesnake Tank for the Class of 2021. Photo: Fallbrook Public Utility District

It takes District staff about eight hours to paint the 25-foot-tall numbers onto the 3.6 million-gallon tank. Since the tank shares the space with several cell towers, the Fallbrook Public Utility District makes arrangements with them to power-down their towers. Then crews safely hoist themselves up to the tower and get to work painting.

Rattlesnake Tank was built in the early 1950s and is one of Fallbrook’s oldest and most visible water tanks.

FPUD to Replace Backflow Prevention Devices

When the Fallbrook Public Utility District approved FPUD’s 2020-2021 budget $500,000 was appropriated for the district’s valve replacement program. The July 27 FPUD board meeting reallocated some of that amount for the purchase of backflow prevention devices.

“It’s just a project to maintain and upgrade some of the backflow devices,” Jack Bebee, general manager of FPUD, said.

FPUD Approves Meter Replacement Purchases

The Fallbrook Public Utility District is in the process of replacing Automatic Meter Reading meters with Advanced Metering Infrastructure meters, and a July 27 FPUD board vote approved the purchases for the fifth year of the program.

The 5-0 vote approved $532,088.90 of purchases including sales tax for meters, encoder receiver transmitters, and antennas. The purchases will provide the district with 1,308 Badger meters of various sizes from National Meter and Automation Inc. for $320,785 plus sales tax and 1,301 Itron encoder receiver transmitters and antennas from Inland Works Water Supply Company for $173,730.50 not including sales tax.

LAFCO Detachment Review Committee Holds First Meeting

A committee to review issues regarding the proposed detachment of the Fallbrook Public Utility District and the Rainbow Municipal Water District from the San Diego County Water Authority held its first meeting July 6.

FPUD and RMWD Act to Save Ratepayers Millions

In a move that is expected to save ratepayers in the Fallbrook Public Utility District and the Rainbow Municipal Water District approximately $10 million a year collectively, the districts took action Thursday, March 19, to withdraw from the San Diego County Water Authority and instead purchase their water from the Eastern Municipal Water District.

California Experiences its Driest February on Record

In the rolling hills of Fallbrook, California, Joseph Rossi and his family have been growing avocados at Rossi Ranch for 23 years.

The fruit has become so popular they now rely on their farm alone to make a living.

“It’s 100 percent of our income for the past seven years now,” Rossi said.

Water Authority Seeks County Vote on Possible Exit of Fallbrook, Rainbow Districts

The San Diego County Water Authority wants county voters to weigh in on whether the Fallbrook and Rainbow water districts can detach and join an agency serving Riverside County.

The Fallbrook Public Utility District and Rainbow Municipal Water District, which together serve around 50,000 customers in North County, are seeking to detach in hopes of paying less for water for their largely rural communities.

OPINION: Farm Bureau Endorses Senate Water Legislation

Water legislation introduced in the U.S. Senate June 20 recognizes the continued crisis facing water reliability in the West, according to the California Farm Bureau Federation.

CFBF endorsed the Drought Resiliency and Water Supply Infrastructure Act by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., who introduced the bipartisan legislation along with Sens. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., Martha McSally, R-Ariz., and Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz.