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11/21/2012 10:52:00 AM
Chino Valley water, sewer rates could rise in January
Matt Santos/Review
(From left to right) CVPD chief Chuck Wynn and Mayor Chris Marley accept a check for $50,000 from Brian Tucker of Davidsonís-Pro Force, along with Pete deCroux of the Prescott Sportsmanís Club. The money is for the new shooting range near Old Home Manor that is scheduled to open in the spring of 2013.
Matt Santos/Review
(From left to right) CVPD chief Chuck Wynn and Mayor Chris Marley accept a check for $50,000 from Brian Tucker of Davidsonís-Pro Force, along with Pete deCroux of the Prescott Sportsmanís Club. The money is for the new shooting range near Old Home Manor that is scheduled to open in the spring of 2013.
Matt Santos
Reporter

For Chino Valley residents, the new year could bring in higher water and sewer rates.

Public Works Department staff is preparing a proposed rate increase for town sewer and water customers to be presented to council next month. If approved, the rate increase could begin as early as January 2013.

The proposal, presented during the Nov. 13 meeting by Public Works Director Ron Grittman, will first be published on the town web site (www.chinoaz.net) before going back to council for approval at the Dec. 11 meeting.

Grittman said current rates for town sewer and water customers are approximately $82 monthly, based on a residential 7,500-gallon usage.

If the proposal is accepted, that rate would go up $6 per month, with another $6 increase scheduled for each of the next four years, ending at an estimated $118.89 by January 2017.

"Currently we are on an interesting trajectory," Grittman said. Based on the current rates, "In 2015, utilities will be out of funds."

Grittman offered three rate increase plans. One would have a very slight increase in the first years with a higher jump in the final two years, another is a slow minor increase that would help with the financial bleed but not pay back into the system, and the third is a constant $6 per year increase that Grittman said would both slow the falling fund balance and provide money for future growth of the system.

"If we keep going at the same rate we are, without cost increase, no property tax, no increase of sales tax, at our present rate of descent, our water and sewer will have drained enough money out of our general fund that our general fund will hit the ground," said Mayor Chris Marley following the meeting. "We have to bring it up to where it's paying for itself."

Comparing the lower rate proposal (scenario 3) to a bandage, Marley said the reason for choosing scenario 2-A was to fix a problem instead of slowing it down.

"We're looking for a solution," said Marley. "The solution being that as the system grows and gains more customers, it starts paying for itself, and that's where we need to be."

Marley said many residents who are currently use private water service or the Prescott water service pay higher rates than Town of Chino Valley customers. Ultimately the town would like to expand its sewer and water service to include those customers, said Marley.

Marley said expansion of the system is not just a good financial plan, but also a requirement of the current arrangement that voters approved years ago.

"It also makes financial sense," he said. "Many large corporations require a water and sewer system instead of wells and septic. If we can encourage commercial development we bring in new jobs and new tax money. Sales tax is the economic engine that drives this town. This isn't an instant fix, but long term it helps our town get financially healthy."

Other items on the Nov. 13 agenda included:

• A $50,000 donation by Davidson-Pro Force to Chino Valley police chief Chuck Wynn toward development of the new gun range near Old Home Manor. According to Wynn, the range is set to open to the public by spring 2013. Wynn also provided an update on the 9-11 memorial that will be displayed at the range. The iron monument has been delivered to the CVPD office and is visible behind the department's fence.

• Further discussion on the possible extension of Road 1 East, from Road 4 South to Road 5 South, continued form the Sept. 6 meeting. Those on hand to discuss the project included Gary Warren, owner of Warren's Hay-N-More, Denny Colgan, owner of Denney's Mini Storage, and Alvin Stump, District Engineer (ADOT). While no decisions were made on the extension, additional suggestions were made for turning lanes and a possible round a bout on Highway 89 near Road 5 South.

A copy of the agenda and action taken is available at www.chinoaz.net.










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Reader Comments

Posted: Thursday, November 29, 2012
Article comment by: Long Time Resident

I agree and support everyone that has posted on this articile, but we need to all ban together and force this town government to stop spending and growing in a direction we can't go to now. Economy is in the dumps, jobs are scarce, Federal government is going to be raising taxes, Chino Valley government has let larger corporations move in without as much as doing any research and now property owners are faced with devaluation of property values due to the solar power plant (the town was stupid to listen to the $money$ talk by APS). Did you know that APS has promised $1 million dollars to the town in the first year of operation and then $2.1 million over the next 29 years????? Where's the money and why start taxes us more by raising utility rates, want to increase sales tax and wants to form a new property tax. FYI: Chino Valley gets no property tax from the 326 acres that the 81,000 panel solar power plant sits on. NO the raising utility rates, No to another sales tax hike and HELL NO on another property tax. I'm tired of paying tax on top of tax. Lets get together and to a referandum to jerk the power from this council.

Posted: Saturday, November 24, 2012
Article comment by: MIKE B.

WE SPENT MOST OF OUR WORKING LIFE IN LAS VEGAS, NV. I JUST PULLED OUT THE LAST SEWER BILL BEFORE MOVING HERE. $ 144.00 A YEAR ( 365 ) DAYS.
IS THERE PRICE GOUGING GOING ON.
THEN THE TOWN MANAGER @ $ 120,000 A YEAR. OUR GOVERNOR, AND THIS IS PUBLIC INFORMATION MAKES $ 93,000 A
YEAR + EXPENCES. MAKES YOU WONDER


Posted: Friday, November 23, 2012
Article comment by: MIKE B.

MIGHT BE A GOOD IDEA TO WAITE TO SEE WHAT WASINGTON DOES WITH TAXES BEFORE RAISING WATER RATES. THERE MIGHT NOT BE MONEY LEFT IN PAY CHECKS TO PAY FOR WATER

Posted: Thursday, November 22, 2012
Article comment by: Best Idea Yet

Here's an idea. Stop chip sealing roads that are years beyond their usable life. Complete waste of money. This town is too small to have an engineer. Send Mr. Grittman packing and with less than half the salary saved, hire a private consulting firm to do what little engineering work is required. Stop with the Nazi-like tactics on sewer services and keep the rates the same with the savings I mentioned above. Problem solved.

Posted: Thursday, November 22, 2012
Article comment by: Ellen Marksen

I'm very worried they are going to bring this sewer line by my mobile and force me to connect to it. I cannot afford to pay 90 plus dollars a month for service and I will lose my home. We need to unite to save our homes. Marley wants to make this the big city on the back of those of us who live hear to be away from it. He expects me to pay astronomical sewer rates to finance it. I hope he is voted out soon.

Posted: Thursday, November 22, 2012
Article comment by: Perry Launon

We are in big trouble. The town leadership sees it fit to force people to connect to this system and feels it's acceptable to bill them $120 a month? Outrageous! People have been forced off their wells and septic, forced to connect to this, now forced to pay $120 or more? This a very dangerous town to live in with such a reckless government. Some people merely cannot afford such insane monthly water/sewer bills and this will put them out of their homes. Who is next?

Posted: Thursday, November 22, 2012
Article comment by: Buckey Smity

Marley and Grittman must go! $119 a month - are they completely crazy? Marley is quoted in this article as saying, " Sales tax is the economic engine that drives this town." I'm a liberal but I know better than that -- sales tax is NOT the economic engine that drives this town and if he believes that he's nuts!

Posted: Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Article comment by: way to much

This is totally crazy raises the rates on sewer and water. Prescott already charges way to much for water. Plus 30% of it goes to chino. When the water already comes fro0m chino to begin with. We pay way higher water and sewer than any one else in the tricity areas. Why can't you combine the sewer trash and water into one bill. Some folks have a hard time meeting bills. And this only makes matters worse for some folk. Alot of chino is on a fixed income. You won't get growth this way. And keep it a small town. People will be moving away.

Posted: Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Article comment by: Arizona Citizen

How about we rip out the sewer and put septic tanks back in? Chino Valley is the only town in the ENTIRE United States of America where they will condemn your home and have the police put you out on the street for not paying your unmetered sewer bill.



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