A bird finds refuge on Metropolitan HQ's 12th floor balcony last week following a late season storm.
Photo by Dee Zinke
A weekly newsletter by and for Metropolitan employees
May 28, 2019
Officials Gather at Hoover Dam to Sign Historic Bill
Representing one of the most significant pieces of water legislation in four decades and capping years of collaboration, leaders from Metropolitan last week gathered with other Colorado River stakeholders at Hoover Dam to sign the Drought Contingency Plan.

GM Jeff Kightlinger, G eneral Counsel Marcia Scully, Chairwoman Gloria Gray and Director Glen Peterson joined representatives from six other western states, Mexico, the Bureau of Reclamation and 10 tribes at the ceremony. Also attending were Metropolitan staff Bill Hasencamp , Shanti Rosset and Meena Westford, each of whom had key roles on behalf of the district’s interests.

The DCP will help ensure a more reliable water supply for the 40 million people and 5 million acres of farmland that rely on the Colorado River.

“The tough reality is, between climate change and severe drought, the Colorado River is at risk of critical shortage,” GM Kightlinger said. “The fact that we were able to put together such a complex agreement speaks to the cooperation among the states and between the U.S. and Mexico in resolving critical issues.”

The DCP is a bridge solution to keep Lake Mead and Lake Powell from reaching low levels that would trigger delivery cuts and prevent Metropolitan from accessing water stored in Lake Mead.

Thanks to the DCP and a wet winter in the Colorado River watershed, Met may store as much as 1 million acre-feet in Lake Mead in 2019, more than in any single previous year.
Fighting Threats to Native Habitat with Fire
Metropolitan owns and jointly manages the Lake Mathews Multiple-Species Reserve with the California Department of Fish & Game, the US Fish & Wildlife Service, and the Riverside County Habitat Conservation Agency (RCHCA). It is part of 347,000 acres of public and quasi-public lands set aside for natural habitat in the county.
If you were in the area last week, you would have seen a lot of smoke and fire. But no worries. It was all part of a prescribed burn to manage non-native weeds that can crowd out native species.

Here's a short video clip .

These fires enhance habitat for the endangered Stephens’ kangaroo rat and 60 other species that live in the area.

Reducing the fuel loads, including non-native grasses, minimizes the risk of uncontrolled wildfires that can threaten public safety and Metropolitan operations in and around Lake Mathews
RCHCA coordinated with CalFire to do field work and pre-fire preparation. Crews established the fire lines and protected sensitive biological areas. Then, using incendiary devices, they started the controlled burning. Met staff closed roads, notified property owners and responded to public inquiries.
The burn also supported a learning exercise for CalFire’s Junior Explorers Fire Camp, which trains young men and women interested in fire service careers. Small plots were burned within the larger burn areas. Students used that information to enhance their fire investigation skills
Welcoming An Abundance of Kevins
This month, three Kevins joined the 16 Kevins already working at Metropolitan. 

The three were among eight new employees at the May 6 orientation. One of the new employees, Kevin Mann described it as “A Twilight Zone” moment and “took it as a good sign” when External Affairs’ ‘Original Kevin,’ Kevin McLaughlin showed up as an orientation speaker. Another Kevin thought it was a practical joke.  Kevin Webb considered the long odds and wondered if he should "buy a lottery ticket.”

But the coincidences didn’t end there. Two of the new workers, Mapp and Mann, share the exact same birth date (Nov. 13).  Webb was born on the same day but in a different month (Feb. 13). And don’t overlook the double consonants at the end of all their last names. 

Kevins Mapp and Mann join External Affairs as videographers; Webb is a team manager in Real Property. Most recently, Mapp worked at CSU Channel Islands. Mann was at the California/ Nevada Credit Union Leagues. Webb worked for Los Angeles County. All were attracted to Met by “the opportunity to work on projects that have a direct impact on our quality of life,” in Webb’s words.

The three men have crossed paths before in person and tangentially.  Webb and Mann realized they were at the same wedding of mutual friends 14 years ago.  Mann grew up near where Webb currently lives, and McLaughlin and Mann’s brother attended Arizona State University. And now they share the same start date as Metropolitan employees.
New hires, transfers, promotions & retirements are posted here each month.    
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