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PRWID Votes to Allocate Funding for Road Repairs

General manager

Workers confer near a trackhoe at the site of part of the installation of the main line for the Carbon Canal winter water project that is being installed as part of PRWID's water system. This part of the project is actually being laid in Emery County where the canal company has traditionally supplied water to users.

Carbonville and Wellington residents may soon see improvement in road repairs done after several construction projects in the last two years.

On Tuesday, the Price River Water District Improvement board of directors voted to apply project money to the existing problems and, in conjunction with the county and the contractors originally doing the work, will attempt to solve rough and seemingly tough to solve problems.

The projects, which included the installation of sewer and water lines in various areas, began in June 2003 when Claw Construction Company started work in Carbonville and Wellington.

The next summer, TNT Construction worked in the Carbonville area on a separate project to install new water lines to replace very old infrastructure that existed there.

The lines were put in to meet state code by PRWID, who acted as an agent for smaller water companies. Since then, the companies have been absorbed into PRWID's system.

The original agreements called for the contractor to replace pavement where the lines had been installed, which meant laying long patches of asphalt across trenches and matching the repairs with the pavement on the edges.

In some places, patching the trenches without overlaying the road was adequate. But in other places, county officials and residents questioned the viability of the process.

In particular, the questions focused on 950 East in Wellington as well as 750 and 1500 North in Carbonville.

"I wasn't happy with some of the original work," said county road supervisor Ray Hanson on Wednesday.

In addition to the patch problem, a very wet winter and spring brought out settling problems which still seem to be plaguing some of the projects, although officials say they are seeing less and less of it now.

"That is a problem no one is sure is over, but we are hopeful," said PRWID district manager Phil Palmer at the meeting.

However, some residents in the Carbonville area said they thought that the problem was due as much to compaction problems as it was to the wet weather.

The ongoing situation prompted a move to have a new county compaction ordinance set up to ensure that there are enough inspectors on future jobs and compaction tests are run on every foot of fill in a trench.

The ordinance remains in the planning stages and is being reviewed by the county attorney's office before the guideline is presented to the commission for approval.

Discussing the repair project, Hanson said the county had had a number of meetings with PRWID in the past few weeks and had discussed the use of the project money to fix some of the problems on the roads. He said he thinks the plan is a good one so that residents will not have to drive on rough roads this winter, but he also sees more work for the future.

"From out meetings it appears to me that they are going to put a skin patch over 1500 West to make it smoother," he said. "I know there are some residents that are opposed to that, but that appears to be what is going to happen for now."

Palmer said told the board that they would use some remaining project money in a 50 percent mix with contractor support to make the repairs. In combination with the county, the district will then seek some matching funds to do a two inch overlay of those streets, probably next year sometime.

Palmer was quick to point out to the board that people needed to differentiate the street repairs by the projects. The road in Wellington and part of the 1500 West situation is due to a sewer project. The other roads with problems are due to the water line construction.

"In the case of the Wellington street and Bawdenville Road, Claw Construction feels what the county wants done there is a betterment rather than just a return to the previous condition," Palmer told the board. "They have said they will contribute 50 percent to the work that is to be done there. We still have $17,000 in that project fund that we can use for our half."

However, he also pointed out that with the cost of oil going up and down so fast he is not sure of the actual estimate for the cost to repave the road.

As for 1500 West the cost will be shared because it was actually impacted by both projects. As for other streets that in the area that need repair, Palmer says that PRWID is still expecting the contractor to do the work.

"The paving work will be done by Nielsen Construction as a sub-contractor and not by the primary contractors," said Palmer.

Hanson said he would like to see the roads in Carbonville returned to their original condition. The year before the first project was begun (2002) the county had chip and sealed all the roads in the area around 1500 West.

Work on the repair project should begin in the next week.

The board also heard from assistant district manager Jeff Richens concerning the Carbon Canal winter water project, and the issue of water rights as well as present activities in the area.

"Mark Page [local state water engineer] says the water share issues should be resolved by next week and then it needs to go to the state office for final approval," he told the board. "We should have the water right by Oct. 1."

The issue about water rights concerns the use by PRWID of Carbon Canal water during the winter months only, and then it's use reverts back to the canal company when that period ends. However, the connections for the winter water supply to ranchers and farmers will be hooked up all year. If a connection shows activity, as measured by a meter, during the non-winter months the connections owners must turn over a share of water to the district, just as any new connection in the district requires.

Richens also pointed out that the work on the project is proceeding well, despite the fact that the construction crew ran into a rock shelf just outside the Carbon County line, in Emery County, which has delayed installation a bit in that area. Right now only main lines are being laid.

While PRWID is a Carbon county entity, Carbon Canal water supplies some users in north Emery County. The project as a whole is being extended into Emery to supply those users. However, state law prohibits two special service districts covering the same geographical area, so the North Emery Special Service District has agreed to pull back it's boundaries so the supply situation can be met.

The entire project is being funded by money from the Carbon Canal Company.

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