VVWD Rejects Amendments to SNWA Agreement

Wolf Creek Golf Club attorney Donald Polednak presents amendments to VVWD board. Photo by Burton Weast.

Wolf Creek Golf Club attorney Donald Polednak presents amendments to VVWD board. Photo by Burton Weast.

In an unusual tie vote, directors of the Virgin Valley Water District (VVWD) did not adopt amendments to a water share leasing agreement with the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) proposed by Wolf Creek Golf Club.

Although the proposed water share lease agreement with SNWA was previously approved by the board, there was a motion to allow interested parties to propose amendments at the regular board meeting on June 17.

Board member Kraig Hafen recused himself from the discussion because of a possible conflict of interest.

Water district attorney Bo Bingham presented the board with a revised agreement that included amendments submitted by Wolf Creek Golf Club.

Bingham told the board that he “Didn’t believe the amendments change the agreement,” and that the proposed agreement with SNWA “Would in no way impact the existing agreements,” which was the concern of Wolf Creek Golf Club.

But not all of the amendments submitted by Wolf Creek Golf Club were included in the revised agreement

Attorney Donald Polednak representing Wolf Creek Golf Club, told the board that there were “Conflicts between parts of the agreement,” and the additional amendments he submitted but were not included were necessary as the “Right of first refusal given to SNWA conflicts with the ability of the board to grant leases to other members of the community as it sees fit.”

Bingham responded saying “I don’t understand what conflict there is,” and that “Any ability the water district has to make water available to SNWA whether under right of first refusal or otherwise is going to be subject to any existing agreement.”

Mesquite residents Nancy Hewitt and John Williams questioned whether the agreement with SNWA would preclude the district from offering water shares to a new industry or business.

Board chair Ted Miller said “We have the option not to lease any shares to SNWA,” and added that the shares were for untreated surface water which would not likely be used by a new business.

After a long discussion, board member Rich Bowler moved to approve the amendments to the agreement, and was seconded by Kenyon Leavitt.  The motion failed with Chair Miller and member Sandra Ramaker voting no.

The original agreement will be forwarded to SNWA for their approval and review.  If there are amendments by SNWA the water lease agreement could be brought back to the water district board.

In other business the board voted unanimously to spend up to $20,000 to install valves in the Highland Hills subdivision.  Manager Kevin Brown told the board that a district water line was within a 300 foot section of Highland Hills Drive that was settling due to the abandoned city dump site under the road.

“We are going to try and be proactive and isolate this line,” said Brown by “Putting a valve on each end of the line and shutting off the line so there is no water.” The district will also relocate one water service at no cost to the customer.

The board also approved extending an existing water share lease with SNWA for two years.  Under the new lease terms SNWA will pay $933.40 for one Mesquite irrigation share and 8 Bunkerville Irrigation shares for $1,203.80 per share.

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