County seeks $2.7 million for sewer plant |

County seeks $2.7 million for sewer plant

Even as other districts are discussing carving up the North Valley Redevelopment Agency, county officials are looking to it as a potential white knight to save completion of a sewer plant.

The North Valley Wastewater Treatment Plant expansion project appears to be $2.8 million over budget so far.

The county has $7.5 million to build the plant, including $2 million already committed from the redevelopment agency and another $5.5 million from a state revolving fund.

On Thursday, county commissioners serving as the redevelopment agency board are being asked for an additional $2.7 million in redevelopment money.

The shortfall is the result of the denial of a $1.7 million grant and increases in labor costs attributed to the construction in Reno associated with the Tesla plant.

The sewer plant is located along Heybourne Lane at the base of Hot Springs Mountain.

It processes sewage from Johnson Lane and areas along the west side of the Carson Valley extending to Genoa.

The plant is the only one operated by the county. The Minden-Gardnerville Sanitation District operates the plant at Ironwood in Minden. The Indian Hills General Improvement District also operates its own plant. Both of those districts are operated by their own elected boards independent of the county.

County commissioners approved expanding the plant after it was determined that the existing plant is at 85-100 percent of its design capacity.

Using redevelopment money to finish the plant would not affect customers’ rates. However, there are an estimated 1,400 Johnson Lane residents still on septic tanks who could be required to connect to the sewer system at some point in the future. A U.S. Geological Survey study predicted that all residents in the community would be on the sewer system by 2030.

A construction contract is scheduled to go to commissioners in August 2017, with construction beginning in October 2017. Under that timetable, plant start-up could be October 2018, with the plant fully operational by December 2018.

The plant was originally built to treat 125,000 gallons a day in 1988 to serve the industrial areas around Minden-Tahoe Airport. Sewer ponds and the plant were the subject of $1 million in work in 2007.