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OID Director Chides Council
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Oakdale Irrigation District director Jack Alpers took the podium at the Nov. 23 Riverbank City Council meeting to complain about the impact that Riverbank's Reinvestment Project Area (RPA) will have on the irrigation district and call for explanations by Riverbank's economic development director Tim Ogden.

Ogden said later he has written at length to the OID board but is perfectly willing to appear at a district meeting with further information.

Newly seated Riverbank Mayor Virginia Madueno said the council would review the written information and discuss it at a later meeting.

Alpers told the council he is not opposed to the RPA that Riverbank is forming for redevelopment of mainly farming land west of the former Army Ammunition Plant but is concerned OID and its members will end up paying for the area's required improvements.

The OID Board discussed its concerns at an earlier November meeting.

OID has lands known as Improvement District 48 falling within the RPA including agricultural land preserved under the Williamson Act. Members of the ID 48 cover OID costs for maintaining and relocating pipelines and as the improvement district develops, OID will charge the ID membership for the costs of those services to advance RDA development.

OID, in addition, is opposed to Riverbank's tendency to "leapfrog" and "cut off" lands west of the RPA, thus producing islands that are difficult and expensive for OID to serve.

OID general manager Steve Knell has said OID filed its concerns prior to the RPA's approval by the county but there was no response and the RPA was just approved.

Following Alpers' comments at the Riverbank City Council meeting, Ogden commented that Riverbank is not annexing or redeveloping land at this point but simply laying the groundwork for actions that could be as far as 10 years into the future.