Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency board member BJ Atkins said on Wednesday that he’s resigning from the board and moving to San Diego County, where he’ll enjoy time with his grandchildren.
Atkins, according to the SCV Water Agency’s website, served on the Newhall County Water District board of directors since he was elected in 2005. He’s been board president five times, and in January 2009, he also became a member of the Castaic Lake Water Agency board. The NCWD and CLWA merged in 2018 to form the SCV Water Agency.
The longtime water board member had intentions of resigning last year at this time, but paused his plans due to construction delays on the house he was building down south.
“My letter of resignation went in two days ago,” he told The Signal on Wednesday. “It becomes effective midnight on the 20th.”
Atkins has already begun moving. He said while he’s sent some stuff to San Diego, he’s still got about 80% of his belongings here in the SCV. But he leaves on a good note, he said.
“I’ve been able to work with some absolutely stellar individuals who did a lot of heavy lifting to restructure water governance in the Santa Clarita Valley,” he told The Signal. “First time it’s ever happened in the state of California, in my opinion, maybe the first time ever in the nation where public agencies came together and consolidated into a restructured water governance system that is saving millions of dollars for ratepayers right now. So, that’s a great thing.”
Atkins said he’d attend a committee meeting Wednesday evening one last time, and that the SCV Water Agency board would most likely discuss his departure at the July 19 meeting.
The board could then call for an election within 60 days of Atkins’ resignation or appoint someone to fill the vacancy within two months. Board members also have the option to not take action at all, in which case the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors could appoint a replacement. Atkins was elected to a four-year term in November 2020.
Senate Bill 634, the legislation that cleared the way for the merger to create SCV Water, requires the 12-member board, which started with 15 members in 2018, to slim down to nine by January 2023. Six board members’ terms expire at the end of this year and three seats — one for each of the agency’s three geographical divisions — will be on the November election ballot.