Jobs Peak water up for subsidy |

Jobs Peak water up for subsidy

County utility officials are proposing a subsidy for Jobs Peak water customers to keep an average monthly water bill from increasing from $65 to $583.47.

On Thursday, Douglas County commissioners will hear a report on increasing rates for the five water systems the county operates in Carson Valley.

According to a report issued for Thursday’s commissioners meeting, $181,700 would lower the average increase for Jobs Peak residents to $202.46 a month, equal to the next highest rate paid by Cave Rock customers.

The subsidy is only proposed for the next year. The flat rate for Jobs Peak would increase to $498.78 in 2012 without it.

Most of the rate would go to the design and construction of a treatment plant that would bring Jobs Peak water up to state and federal standards.

Jobs Peak residents would be encouraged to convert from the 2-inch connections they all have now to a smaller 5⁄8-inch connection by a lower rate and a lower cost to convert the meter.

A meter connection in Jobs Peak now costs $17,000 regardless of size. Under the new rates, effective Oct. 1, a 3⁄4-inch connection or smaller would cost $4,659. Lines larger than 11⁄2-inches would see a rate increase to $23,294.

Customers of Sheridan Acres would see a similar structure for connection fees.

Efforts to consolidate the water companies were rejected by county commissioners.

In the wake of that rejection, the county utilities are moving forward with separate increases for the 2010-11 years only.

Under the new proposal, residents living in Jobs Peak and Sheridan Acres would install meters.

In addition to increasing rates, scheduling of some capital projects would reflect current information.

The increases have come in for criticism from East Valley residents who learned they are being served by the Fairgrounds Water system, where the proposed water increase is higher.

Fairgrounds water system users will be saddled with $2.5 million in 2012 to pay for a water line to Minden.

According to the county, the average monthly bill for a single family residence on a 3⁄4-inch meter using 23,000 gallons a year would go from $45.10 a month to $189.09 a month. That rate could increase to $491.55 by 2014, according to county figures. That would include phasing in the pipeline from Minden and elimination of a subsidy historically provided by the county for administration costs.

West Valley water customers will see their rates for an average single family home with a 3⁄4-inch meter using 20,000 gallons from $43.37 to $65.42 a month. According to the county, the water company’s rates under the same conditions would increase to $92.20 a month by 2014. West Valley customers’ rates include a $1.73 million portion of the county’s water line between Minden and Carson. The plan is to connect the water system to the pipeline.

East Valley residents, who are part of the county’s largest water system, would see the smallest increase.

According to the county, rates for an average single family home with a 3⁄4-inch meter using 18,000 gallons would go from $54.48 to $58.19 a month. According to a rate study commissioned by the county, East Valley rates would eventually go to $66.44 a month in 2014.

Sheridan Acres water customers who are now paying a flat rate of $125 a month would see that rate go up to $170.38 a month. If they had a meter, that rate for a 5⁄8-inch connection using 20,000 gallons would be $164.44 a month. Both rates would continue to increase until the flat rate hit $203.64 a month, or $196.54 a month on the meter.

Sheridan Acres customers will purchase water from Jobs Peak water system for $4.48 per 1,000 gallons.