Nevada Irrigation District proposes rate increase |

Nevada Irrigation District proposes rate increase

how to protest

Protests must include a description of the property, like its address or parcel number; and a signature of the property owner or tenant. Written protests must be mailed or delivered by April 24 to the following:

Nevada Irrigation District

Attn: Customer Service

1036 W. Main St.

Grass Valley, CA 95945

The Nevada Irrigation District intends to vote on increasing water rates at its April 24 meeting — changes that if approved would become effective in May, officials said Monday.

The proposed increases would mean treated water customers would see an average increase of $13.07 each month this year, a release states. A chart provided by NID shows that monthly costs would almost double for many customers by 2023.

Rates don’t pay for capital projects, meaning none of the increased revenue from the proposed hike would fund the Centennial Dam project, said Greg Jones, the water district’s assistant general manager.

Officials said notices announcing the proposed changes have been sent to every property owner and tenant in the water district. Those notices should arrive over the next few days.

People have until April 24, the day of the expected vote on the rates, to submit written protests. The water district’s board of directors must receive the written protests before the conclusion of a public hearing at that meeting.

“If the district receives written protests representing a majority of the affected parcels, the proposed rate increase will not be implemented,” NID’s website states.

The water district has about 19,000 treated water customers and about 6,000 raw water customers.

The increases are based on a water rate cost of service study. That study analyzed the district’s water rates and examined fairness in those rates, revenue sufficiency and funding reserves, a news release states.

Study findings state the water district suffered an $8 million revenue loss over the past five years primarily due to conservation.

According to the study, the prior rate study covered fiscal years 2014 to 2018 and recommended a 6 percent increase to treated and raw water customers. However, the added revenue only totaled 4.2 percent, leading to the $8 million revenue loss.

Additionally, the water district spent its unrestricted cash reserves from $60.4 million to about $8 million. It added about 37,000 feet of pipe to the system over those five years, the study states.

“The board’s decision to reduce reserves was in response to direction by the grand jury based on their review of district financial management,” it continues.

If approved, the rate increase will add about $3.5 million to the water district’s fund reserves over five years. It currently has about $15 million in restricted and unrestricted funds.

“It’s prudent to begin building those reserves back up,” Jones said. “We’ve proven to the grand jury that we’re not sitting on that cash.”

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email or call 530-477-4239.

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