Star Valley To Vote On Water Agreement


Despite the fact that the Payson council voted to accept a drafted water agreement with Star Valley, there is no agreement officially in place between the two towns.

Star Valley Town Manager Vito Tedeschi said Star Valley is still looking into the agreement, but added the town is expecting to reach an agreement with Payson soon.

"(The council) is still looking at some details, but we are very close," Tedeschi said.

The two town councils, along with their formed committees, have been looking at a way to construct an acceptable water agreement for the use of the Tower Well by the residents of Payson.

The Payson Council last week approved the contract to be forwarded to the Star Valley Council for its review.

Tedeschi has recommended that the Star Valley Council approve the agreement.

The proposed draft has 11 different stipulations that the Star Valley council will review tonight, Tuesday, at its council meeting.

Some of the stipulations include:

  • The two towns agree not to withdraw groundwater from Star Valley in excess of the sustainable safe yield.
  • Payson will be allowed to pump groundwater from the wells as long as there is no harmful effect to Star Valley.
  • Both towns agree not to withdraw water in the excess of amount that would do harm to the sustainability of the aquifer.

If accepted, the agreement will be effective on Jan. 1 and will last for five years. The agreement will automatically be renewed for future five-year terms unless one party gives written notice to the other within 30 days of the termination date.

The Star Valley Council also will discuss whether to accept the donation of the Benjamin Trust Well agreement. Resident Chris Benjamin is part of the Benjamin Trust.

The Benjamin Trust has offered to donate a 60 x 90 foot well site to the town for fire-flow purposes.

Accepting the donation, officially puts Star Valley into the water business, Tedeschi said.

He said this has been on the backburner for several months while a survey was being conducted.

"Right now, it is a planning tool for fire-flow protection," Tedeschi said. Currently, the well is not active.

The agreement states that if the town, for fire-flow protection, someday does not need the well, it reverts back to the Benjamin Trust.

The Star Valley Council meets in a work study at 6 p.m. tonight, followed by its regular 6:30 p.m. meeting at 4180 E. Highway 260.

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