KINGMAN – The price of water is going up in Golden Valley to cover operating and maintenance costs after the Mohave County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved rate revisions for Golden Valley Improvement District at Tuesday’s regular meeting.
The board voted 5-0 to increase water rates or levy a tax on parcels within the district, increase future development fees and establish higher connection fees.
Specifically, the agreement from 1990 requires the developer to pay $474 for each residential unit for water access to the initial well and backbone distribution.
However, commencing Feb. 20, 2018, and striking the date of June 19, 2006, a developer or person seeking new or additional water access rights will pay $5,200 for each service connection, plus a fee increase of $150 a year.
District 4 Supervisor Jean Bishop, who represents Golden Valley, said GVID is failing to cover operating costs and is underfunded for maintenance of infrastructure.
“Replacement funds are not adequate,” she said. “This looks like a really good compromise.”
The new rates are based on operating expenditures and replacement and maintenance, not the number of hookup allocations, County Manager Mike Hendrix added.
Steve Latoski, director of Public Works, said the district has aligned the cost of water with industry rates from coin-operated water dispensers in the area.
“These standpipes are within the district and should represent in-district rates,” he said. “This can and should be looked at, particularly where the users are coming from.”
Golden Valley resident Butch Meriwether told the board that a lot of people are coming from outside the district to fill up their water tanks at the standpipes.
Three residents sought a petition to take control of the Golden Valley Improvement District, but couldn’t muster enough support, Bishop said.
“That’s what I’m hearing from my constituents. They’re not on board with the petition to take back the system,” she said.
The petition required signatures from 51 percent of property owners in the district that has 5,721 parcels, 1,774 customers and 1,320 metered connections, according to a county official.
In other action from Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting:
• The board voted 3-2 (Supervisors Buster Johnson and Lois Wakimoto opposed) to seek a second appraisal prior to the public auction of county-owned property at 420 Old Highway 66 in Kingman. The vacant property with a structure was originally planned as a fueling station. County Manager Hendrix recommended not moving forward with the sale at this point to the property’s low appraisal of $21,000. Supervisor Bishop said that’s a “ridiculous” figure before making the motion for a second appraisal. “If that’s the actual value, we should have another discussion,” she said.
• The board took no action regarding a request for Development Services to serve as a test department for completing a zero-based budget, or one in which revenue equals expenditure, for 2019. Supervisor Hildy Angius said she’s never seen backup material on how building fees were developed and how they’re used to calculate the budget. Fees have always covered costs, she said. “I want a public workshop so people can see how they came up with the fees and how we come up with the budgets that we do,” Angius said. The item will be placed on a future agenda.
• The board voted 5-0 to approve changes to a March 2017 corporate structure agreement with Dot Foods and Dot Transportation for the purposes of a new federal tax identification number.
• The board approved organizational redesign in the environmental quality and waste disposal division of Development Services to save $39,728 in salary expense through reclassification and elimination of a key position.
• The board pulled an item from the agenda regarding the Arizona Attorney General’s letter in which the office received a request from a legislator to investigate Mohave County’s zoning ordinance related to limiting residential animal permits.