PRWID Discusses Subdivision Approval Process, Helper Bill
|PRWID board member Betty Wheeler observes as water improvement district crews relocate a sewer line at the Carbon County golf course. In order to expand the parking lot, the county's recreation and transportation special service district asked PRWID to move one of the water improvement district's sewer lines.|
The Price River Water Improvement District board met Tuesday and the first item of business was the presentation of a subdivision proposal by developer Bob Torgerson.
The development project is planned to be located south of the present Westwood subdivision and will eventually contain 84 residential units.
Torgerson explained that the subdivision would be built in three phases during a period of years and the first stage would contain 24 units.
The board and Torgerson discussed sewer, water and storm drainage links to the proposed subdivision.
The board decided that a survey should be conducted at the proposed site to be sure that existing lines and infrastructure can handle the increase in services required.
Torgerson will take the subdivision proposal to the county commissioners next month.
The water improvement district has to review and approve the subdivision before a building permit is issued by the county.
The PRWID board agreed to put the item on the agenda for the next meeting after a preliminary study of the site has been made by the improvement district.
The board then turned to the sale of surplus property by the water district.
The district offered a 10-wheel dump truck for bids recently, but rejected all bids as being too low.
Assistant PRWID manager Jeff Richens indicated that the district had received a better offer from a company in Santaquin, and he recommended that the board accept the bid.
The board approved the sale and the meeting turned to a review of the ongoing winter project for livestock watering in the county.
Richens told the board that the project was proceeding on schedule and various parts might be activated soon.
There is still water in the canal for livestock and there might not be a need to use the PRWID delivery system until after Nov. 15.
There followed a discussion about the finalization of agreements between the Carbon Canal Company and PRWID as to the transfer of water rights for the winter livestock project.
The board will require a formal letter of acceptance before the project is considered finalized.
The next item of business was a billing settlement proposed by Helper city. The offer was presented by Robert Welch. In 2004, PRWID sold water to Helper city.
The agreement with PRWID was for short-term emergency water only and the city was charged at a low rate as an overage fee.
Helper's need for PRWID water went beyond what was at first agreed upon and issues of billing developed.
Welch brought a proposal from the city to temporarily transfer 200 shares of city water to PRWID to help mitigate the costs.
Board member Keith Cox told Welch that the district would need the proposal drafted in a formal letter from the attorneys and members of PRWID would meet with Helper city officials to work out the formal agreement.
The board then reviewed the policies for commercial water and sewer connections and the fee schedule for services and equipment use.
PRWID has a formal fee schedule that was updated in 2004. A
A suggestion was made that the district should consider stablishing a fee schedule for legal services since the associated fees are often a significant cost in developing projects.
PRWID staff will review the proposal.
The next item of discussion was a review of the subdivision approval process.
PTRWID manager Phil Palmer said the cunty commissioner Mike Milovich had recently told the board that the county needed a formal letter from PRWID for approval of water pressure, fire flow, and sewer connections to proposed subdivisions before the county can approve the final development.
Palmer said that the district already has a checklist for developers to follow in seeking approval from the district. Board Chair Keith Cox said that a subdivision proposal should be approved in phases and not all at once if the project is expected to take several years. He said that the board could approve a major project in concept, but leave the final approval for a time much closer to the actual construction to be sure the infrastructure is properly in place.
There followed a review of the policies for accepting subdivision hookups. Richens told those assembled that the formal policy was for staff to review and approve proposals for subdivisions if there were only three hookups or less. Any subdivision with more than three hookups must bring the proposal for review by the board.
The next item of business was manager reports and a review of the proposed 2006 budget. Each PRWID manger discuss their areas of responsibility and made preliminary budget proposals to the board. Issues of increasing fuel and utility costs were discussed, as well as much needed capitol outlays for new buildings and equipment.
A major item of concern was the need for pay raises for district employees. The managers were united in bringing to the board's attention the need to update the pay scale and compensation for district workers. The fact that the district is no longer competitive in pay and benefits was reinforced by the fact that the managers are loosing good and well-trained people to other entities. One manager pointed out that he personally had not received a pay raise in twelve years.
District Manager Phil Palmer told the board that the wage disparities are getting increasingly worse and that employees have taken benefit cuts in each of the last five years. Richens pointed out that in the past year alone, the cost of living index has increased by 4.5 percent. He said that employees should not be expected to go year after year without a cost of living increase.
Board Chairman Cox agreed to study the wage and benefit package. He said the board would review the pay scale and make some recommendations.
There followed a Managers Report presented by Phil Palmer. Palmer told the board that the new pump station at the Hill subdivision is on line and working. He said that a delay had been experienced in doing a planned relocation of PRWID facilities and lines in Helper City. He said that the state engineer's office had scaled-back the project and had recommended that PRWID not proceed with the relocation at this time.
Palmer also said that he was in the process of collecting money owed the district by the Utah Department of Transportation, and he had received a $20,000 grant to cover cost overages on sewer line projects in Wellington and Carbonville.
As a final item, the board discussed the status of the Wellington service agreement update and the schedule for Wellington to pay delinquent bills to the district.
The board then adjourned.