LAGUNA BEACH : Water District Plans Consolidation Talks

As a potential battle over combining South County water districts looms, the South Coast Water District will meet Wednesday to discuss participating in consolidation efforts.

The water district's community advisory committee will have a panel discussion at 7 p.m. in the district board room, 31592 West St.

The panel will include district General Manager Michael Dunbar and a representative from the county Local Agency Formation Commission, which oversees consolidation of government agencies.

District officials encourage the public to attend; a question-and-answer session will be included.

The water district's board of directors is studying whether the district, which serves the Laguna Beach area, should join forces with one or more of the water agencies in South County.

The issue has grown heated in San Clemente, where the City Council last week called for the liquidation of the Tri-Cities Water District, its major water supplier.

City officials consider Tri-Cities a middleman and hope to save money by purchasing directly from the smaller district's supplier.

Tri-Cities officials have rejected San Clemente's liquidation proposals and say they might pursue consolidation with the South Coast Water District.

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