Cave Rock water system work up for all-clear from state

The former volcano neck known as Cave Rock looms over Lake Tahoe.

The former volcano neck known as Cave Rock looms over Lake Tahoe.
Photo by Kurt Hildebrand.


A state determination that $18 million in work on the Cave Rock Water System won’t pose any environmental concerns will make way for work to begin.

The Nevada Division of Environmental Protection issued a notice on Monday that it intends to issue a finding of no significant impact to Douglas County.

That means that most of the work will be covered by a $16.5 million Drinking Water State Revolving Fund loan.

According to the state, the utility serves around 2,800 people in and around Cave Rock and Skyland near Lake Tahoe.

According to the county, the rest of the funding will be made up from a $20 surcharge on customers, which will cover $1 million, and a $500,000 U.S. Forest Service grant.

The county is eligible for partial principal forgiveness funding from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund as outlined in Nevada’s Intended Use Plan, state officials said.

No wetlands, floodplains, agricultural lands, or significant fish or wildlife species or habitats are affected by the project. A reasonable assurance exists that no national landmarks or properties with nationally significant historic, architectural, prehistoric, archeological, or cultural value are affected by the project.

The project includes the replacement of 2.84 miles of water line, booster pump stations and installation of a redundant water treatment unit in the water treatment plant.

Cave Rock customers’ water comes from Lake Tahoe, and during severe drought years those intakes have come very close to rising above the surface. Work to extend those intakes will be included in the improvements.

Anyone wishing to obtain further information regarding the project should submit their comments to Sharada Maligireddy no later than April 16 to: Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, Office of Financial Assistance, 901 South Stewart Street, Suite 4001, Carson City, NV 89701-5249 or

Settlement of a federal lawsuit filed by Cave Rock customers two years ago resulted in the county consolidating all of its water systems.

The county’s nine water systems are scattered across its jurisdiction. There is no plan to connect the three water systems at the Lake with those in Carson Valley.

Most county residents receive their drinking water from a purveyor independent of the county, like one of the general improvement districts, the Gardnerville Water Co. or the Town of Minden. Even those East Valley residents being served by the county actually receive their water from the Town of Minden.


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