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NID board issues mixed pipe rulings

Call it a study in contrasts.

One South Nevada county man pleaded successfully Wednesday for Nevada Irrigation District directors to let him install a water pipeline to his home.



A little later, the directors voted to use eminent domain to install a water pipeline in the street in front of four Banner Mountain properties whose owners want a better deal from NID in return for pipeline easements.




Art Rodriguez, who lives with his family on Ranchero Way near Lake of the Pines, told the board he has three dry wells and that experts have cautioned it would be fruitless to drill another.

“I’ve tried every avenue that I know of. You folks are my last hope,” said Rodriguez, who asked to be allowed to connect a PVC pipe to an existing water main along Magnolia Road.

Ordinarily, NID policy – which seeks to ensure orderly development of the water system – would have required Rodriguez to extend a main pipeline along East Hacienda Drive and Ranchero Way to his property.

Rodriguez, however, said most of his neighbors are satisfied with their water wells and not interested in sharing the costs, and that he alone could not afford the new pipeline.

Directors voted unanimously to grant the variance on a hardship basis.

Meanwhile, on Banner Mountain, NID proposes to put a pipeline underneath roads between its Elizabeth George and Snow Mountain water treatment plants.

Four out of 18 property owners didn’t grant easements, so NID directors voted 4 to 1 to proceed with eminent domain, under which homeowners will still receive compensation for easements. NID Director Nancy Weber, who represents the area, voted against the proposal.

The new pipeline will run along Banner Mountain Trail and Rocker Road near Nevada City.

In other business:

— Directors authorized NID’s human resources department to recruit a new general manager to succeed longtime GM Jim Chatigny, who will retire Sept. 3.

The board had considered hiring an outside consultant to conduct the search, but decided to do it in-house.

— Directors heard from Steve Muse, a Banner Mountain homeowner angry with an NID proposal to replace the Lower Cascade Canal with a 51/2 mile-long, 4- to 5-foot diameter pipeline that could cross 150 properties.

Muse said he’d lose 100 mature trees and $100,000 worth of improvements, and threatened to sue individual board members who voted for the pipeline.

Following the meeting, NID officials said directors can’t be sued because someone doesn’t like their vote. They also said the project is still in its beginning stages and the exact pipeline route hasn’t been determined.


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