NID, GV join forces on takeover study |

NID, GV join forces on takeover study

Should the Nevada Irrigation District take over the city of Grass Valley’s municipal water system?

Both sides agreed this week to split the bill for a $56,100 study to answer that question.

The study could cost less, because the firm chosen to do it – Sauers Engineering, Inc., of Nevada City – will be looking for “fatal flaws” that could put the kibosh on the deal.

For example, Sauers will take a close look at potential expenses associated with the 100-year-old water pipes that make up part of the city’s water delivery system.

“If there’s a fatal flaw in this and it isn’t going to go forward, we can hopefully (discover) it right off the bat,” said Karen Nelson, a principal the engineering firm.

As subcontractors, Sauers will use Terry Lowell & Associates of Roseville, which is headed by Terry Lowell, former Nevada County public works director, and also employs Tom Leland, Grass Valley’s public works director from the 1960s to 1980s.

“(Leland’s) kind of a walking encyclopedia of the city’s system,” Nelson said.

NID directors on Wednesday agreed to hire Sauers. Grass Valley City Council made the identical vote Tuesday. Each agency will fund half of the study, which will cost $56,100 at most.

The two government organizations first agreed in January to pursue the joint study. Sauers was selected from six firms that applied for the work.

Nelson said the study would look into a wide range of subjects, from infrastructure to technical, financial, managerial, personnel, political and other areas of affect.

The study should be complete by late summer or early fall.

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