Tuesday’s meeting was at full capacity this week as community members attended to learn and talk about proposed water rate increases once more.
Before diving into the tedious numbers, however, the Virgin Valley Water District heard updates from Manager Kevin Brown on leasing water to the Lincoln County Water District. The LCWD and VVWD have been talking for months now about finding a way to get water to the southernmost area of Lincoln County, on the Mesquite City border.
The general consensus among the board members was the concern that once pipeline was routed to Lincoln County (paid for by LC) at what point would the VVWD get that water back.
“Our negotiations are going well,” said LCWD General Manager Wade Poulsen. “We have some issues and roadblocks, but nothing that can’t be resolved.”
“I see nothing wrong with continuing talks with them,” said VVWD President Ted Miller.
But the mood quickly moved from positive to skeptical as Board members Rich Bowler, Sandra Ramaker and Kraig Hafen approached the idea that once a supply is created, it can’t be taken back, as proposed by a Sun City resident in the audience.
“That’s the number one fear… once you turn it on, you can’t just turn it off,” said Hafen. “There’s no harm in continuing the discussions, but there aren’t any promises either.”
Bowler motioned to move on with the talks, which was seconded by Hafen. The motion passed 3 – 1, with Ramaker opposed. If anything does come from this situation and a solution is found, the proposals will go before the Board and to public hearings for comments.
The rest of the meeting consisted of the review of new possible situations for the community with a rate increase based on a tier system and meter sizes, presented by Mike Chandler of Bowen, Collins & Associates. Those increases all include the base rate increase of $10, which will go directly towards old bond debt. Running through the numbers with the meter sizes, if users have the correct size of meter for their usage, the new tiers may actually save them money. While the VVWD will meet again on November 4, the next meeting to discuss and explain this new system is scheduled at the second Regular VVWD meeting of the month on November 18, 2014 at 5 p.m. at 500 Riverside Road. The public is encouraged to attend to learn how this will affect them once implemented.