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Fallbrook Utility District OKs GIS Software Licensing Agreement

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Fallbrook Utility District OKs GIS Software Licensing Agreement

October 23, 2014
By Miguel Leiva-Gomez, TMCnet Contributor

In March of last year, the Fallbrook Public Utility District (FPUD) and the Rainbow Municipal Water District were joined together to form what is now known as the North County Joint Powers Authority (JPA) as part of an initiative that serves the purpose of saving taxpayer money by unifying water utility companies in the region. To accomplish all of this, both agencies would transition towards a business model that shared employees and resources between them, eventually making their relationship tighter and interdependent.

In what could be called a totally predictable outcome, given the way in which talks on structuring district elections went out, the relationship between the two companies dissolved during the same month this year. An announcement by U-T San Diego reports that George McManigle, Rainbow's board president, concluded that the Rainbow Municipal Water District has withdrawn from the JPA as a result of an inability on behalf of both agencies to “come to terms on how to govern the ultimate organization.”

And so we arrive to a more recent event, in which both agencies have been required to have separate geographic information system (GIS) software licensing agreements since the dissolution of their relationship earlier in the year. We now know that the FPUD board has complied with this requirement by voting 4-1 to approve a three-year relationship with Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI (News - Alert)). The cost of this relationship will be $27,000 per year, including sales tax.

Brian Brady, FPUD's general manager, said, “That was required because Rainbow Water District withdrawing from the partnership with Fallbrook requires Fallbrook to now have separate software licensing. Last year the two districts were sharing a software license.”

The GIS referred to here helps water distributors to assess the state of and quickly locate their pipelines, valves and meters. This allows them to also make smarter plans and maintain their lines more efficiently. With any hope, they will attempt to take advantage of this software and manage their services as efficiently as possible to avoid pinching the taxpayer any further.

Edited by Alisen Downey

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