Rangely residents discuss rural water

RANGELY | The Rio Blanco Water Conservancy District Manager Alden Vanden Brink along with board President Wade Cox and Vice President Tim Winkler laid out details and answered questions for interested Western Rio Blanco County residents during a rural water informational meeting Monday, April 26. More than a year ago the concept to create a rural water district, which would provide a reliable high-quality potable water supply and service to properties, individuals, and businesses not currently served by a public drinking water supply was presented for community input and discussion purposes. Since last February, a feasibility analysis has taken place and prospective members are being sought. The proposed service area is not presently served by the Town of Rangely falling within Rio Blanco Water Conservancy District boundaries (approximately from Stedman Mesa to the Utah border). Vanden Brink reports nearly 39% of potential members have already signed up but 50-70% participation is needed.

What’s included with the rural water district membership?

A water distribution system, water to your property, curb stop/shut-off valve, account management, meter, meter pit, backflow preventer, 24-hour emergency service, customer service, and distribution maintenance (line breaks, water quality monitoring, flushing, and leak detection).

How much is this investment?

There is a one-time membership fee of $5,000. An initial $1,000 membership commitment per hook-up for those interested in water service. The remaining $4,000 for membership will be requested prior to final design and if the members decide to move forward with the creation of the rural water district. If service cannot be provided the full membership fee will be returned. With membership comes a 5-year service guarantee commitment from the member once water service is established at your location. The member would be obligated to pay a monthly minimum service fee. If none of the project is grant funded the estimated monthly service cost is $195.63, if 45% of the project is funded with grants the estimated monthly service cost is $142.52. Several funding sources have been identified that would include a mix of grants and long-term low interest loans. Fees and funding will depend greatly on the level of participation.

If you have ever hauled water to take a shower, water your livestock, or flush your toilet you know how inconvenient and time consuming it can be. The Rio Blanco Water Conservancy District lists many benefits including high quality potable drinking water piped to your property, no more hauling water, reduced vehicle maintenance and registration fees, lower property owner maintenance, lower fuel costs, and appreciation of property values. If you are ready to ditch your hose, tank, pump, and cistern there is a lot more work to be done and details to work out, join the conversation by calling 970-675-5055 or send an email to rbwcd@yahoo.com.

*Information provided is conceptual and intended for community input and discussion purposes. Expressed service area, cost estimates/values, fees, and processes are preliminary and subject to change.

By ROXIE FROMANG | Special to the Herald Times

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