Nevada County water district postpones rate hike discussion | TheUnion.com

Nevada County water district postpones rate hike discussion

A water rate hike being proposed by the Nevada Irrigation District, once set for its next board meeting on Dec. 12, has been postponed.

The decision to table the hearing until January reverses an earlier decision to put the water rate hike on the same agenda as approval of the district's 2019 budget.

The budget was up for approval at the board's last meeting on Nov. 28, but was tabled so that incoming board members Chris Bierwagen, Laura Peters and Ricki Heck could be involved in the budget decision.

That 2019 budget uses an assumption that a 5.72 percent increase in the water rates will be approved. Heck had asked the current directors not to adopt the budget, arguing the water rate increases need to be approved first.

District General Manager Rem Scherzinger, however, told the board the budget needed to be passed so bills could be paid come Jan. 1. He added the budget could always be amended if needed.

Tuesday afternoon, district staff determined the two items would be better suited for separate agendas, spokeswoman Susan Lauer said.

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"It's important to have the budget passed this fiscal year," Lauer said, adding that the water rate hike could be discussed some time in January.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at lizk@theunion.com.

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