On Monday, Dec. 7 at 7 p.m., important challenges for the Lebec County Water District will be discussed, including the need to raise rates in order to qualify for state and federal grants for system upgrades.
According to newly elected board member Robert Karr and the system’s secretarytreasurer, Jamie Guinn, the system is in need of a mandated chlorination unit that could cost $25-35,000. The system failed three coliform tests in the last year, putting it under state sanctions requiring the unit. Fluoride levels have also been intermittently above state guidelines. The system’s three wells, five booster pumps, eight tank sites and 20 tanks need to be upgraded and adapted to be able to dilute the fluoride levels when necessary. Guinn said some of the distribution system, which serves over 1,000 people, was built in the 1920s and is overdue for replacement. State and federal grant guidelines require that systems charge their customers enough each month to maintain the system and to encourage conservation.
“They won’t help someone who won’t help themselves,” Guinn said of the reviewers’ comments. Current monthly rates are as low as $12 a month. Residential rates are expected to increase to an average of about $35 a month.
The public is welcome to attend, Karr said, at 401 Frazier Mountain Park Road (on the frontage road at the old motorcycle club building). You can see the agenda here
This is part of the December 4, 2009 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.