Residents who reside in the Sagebrush area of La Crescenta and La Cañada Flintridge have been mistakenly charged a fee from the Crescenta Valley Water District on their property tax bill.
Natalie Ouwersloot, an LCF resident who lives on Ocean View Boulevard in the Sagebrush area that borders Glendale, noticed an odd fee on her property tax statement last week that came from the Crescenta Valley Water District, titled “Pipeline Capital.”
Ouwersloot was confused as to why she was receiving the fee when she contracts her water service from the La Cañada Irrigation District. She remembered an email she received from the Crescenta Valley Water District regarding a new fee and connected the dots.
The email said that a typical charge for a single-family home is $194, which is what Ouwersloot got charged.
“When I called [the Crescenta Valley Water District], they told me that they would refund the money through a check,” Ouwersloot told the News-Press.
She also took to Nextdoor — an app where people can post information regarding a specific neighborhood — to share the news with fellow residents. The post received multiple comments thanking Ouwersloot for her post about the fee, with some neighbors noting that they only noticed it after Ouwersloot pointed it out to them.
The fee was a “data processing error,” according to Regulatory and Public Affairs Manager Patrick Atwater from the Crescenta Valley Water District. He told the News-Press that “Sagebrush-area customers were incorrectly sent a bill.”
Atwater said that the water district is taking full responsibility for the error and is in the process of reimbursing the affected residents with a check in the full amount of the charge that was assigned.
“The checks are being processed and will be out by the end of November,” he said.
Residents do not have to call the water district to receive the check, said Atwater.
“We will be sending the check to the [address] that the tax was billed,” he said.
The fee itself pertains to a charge that was unanimously approved by the Crescenta Valley Water District’s board of directors in June.
“This charge will help replace aging infrastructure, provide water to fire services and residents in case of emergency and generally invest in a safe and reliable future water supply,” reads the water district website.
Property owners with questions for the water district are encouraged to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (818) 236-4340.
First published in the November 4 print issue of the Glendale News-Press.