County may get break for Cascade Shores problem |

County may get break for Cascade Shores problem

Nevada County could save up to $2.5 million for the Cascade Shores wastewater treatment plant upgrade and take a large burden off of ratepayers as well.

The treatment plant was already slated for an upgrade to meet new state and federal water quality guidelines when a landslide took it off line and increased the problem in May 2005. That put the overall cost of rebuilding the plant at $6.4 million, which would have increased sewer fees for 84 Cascade Shores homes from $1,995 to $4,500 per year.

The homeowners had a right to reject that proposition by vote and they did so late last year after bids for reconstruction and moving the plant came in at $5.5 million. The project was sent out to bid again this year, with the same results.

That caused Supervisor Nate Beason to look for alternatives for his constituents in the mountain subdivision. Earlier this week, Beason may have found it when the California State Water Quality Control Board voted to allow the county to find a contractor for the project instead of sending it out to bid for a third time.

“We can take the overhead down by sole sourcing,” Beason said. Having one contractor take care of the design engineering and construction could save the county up to $2.5 million he said.

But even if the county finds a contractor to do the job for much less, the plan has to go back before the water board for approval Beason said.

“They’re starting to get it that rural communities don’t have the money to throw at the increasing costs of (wastewater treatment) technologies,” Beason said. “But there’s a lot of work left to do.”

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