CLAYTON -- Generally residents do not pay much attention to Geological Hazard Abatement District reports, unless they live in Oakhurst.
The district was established as a condition of the city's Oakhurst subdivision approval, as an insurance policy to cover possible future geotechnical issues. Over time, three slide areas developed.
City Engineer Rick Angrisani will present the first earth-movement geotechnical monitoring report at the Aug. 19 City Council meeting.
In July, he routinely updated the council on the abatement district status with news that Oakhurst homeowners should expect a 2.78 percent cost-of-living increase in assessments, based on the Bay Area Consumer Price Index.
Six large dewatering wells and inclinometers were installed last year to increase the stability of the large slope between Kelok Way and North Valley Park, and there were plans to monitor them semiannually.
However, monitoring was postponed due to dry conditions, which Angrisani said lessened the probability of subterranean movement (about 40 feet below the surface).
The Clayton City Council acts as the district board of directors. Angrisani manages the district and recently issued a contract to Stevens, Farrone & Bailey (the original geotechnical engineer) for monitoring work at a cost of $11,700 for the first year and about $9,600 each year thereafter.
Angrisani predicted a fund balance of approximately $32,600 at the end of the 2013-2014 fiscal year, not including $120,000 that is set aside from a legal settlement with Presley Homes to pay for paving repairs at Keller Ridge and other areas.
The slide areas resulted in damage and lawsuits. The builder, still under the legally required 10-year warranty period came back to do some of the work, and the city of Clayton used its multicity pooling insurance to cover legal settlement costs, partly because of its ownership of open space in the area.
When the cases were finally settled, some homeowners were compensated and other money was designated to cover the abatement district expenses.
Through assessments, all of the homeowners in the Oakhurst area contribute to the district's land movement mitigation efforts, even if their particular home is on a level parcel.
Angrisani said more work is needed. However, Oakhurst residents have twice voted down proposals for an assessment increase. The upcoming report should shed light on the area's current stability.
Contact Dana Guzzetti at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 925-202-9292.