History has repeated itself with the PSWID board, Once again, the special interest groups have attempted to stop the progress of the board. The developers and Realtors' don't want the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) impacting development in the community. The county wants that development so that its tax revenue can grow and has spent thousands of dollars of our tax money lobbying against the progress the PSWID board was making.
Rates approved by the ACC don't usually provide enough for the utilities to expend revenue on research and exploration. This is the gap the PSWID mission is designed to fill.
For some time the board had concluded there is water that could serve the community needs in the "R" aquifer. A long-term plan had been to drill an exploratory well, but how to deliver that water to the community without creating a continuing tax burden for maintaining the infrastructure and selling the water was a catch-22. The board resolved that dilemma with the K2 agreement by drilling an exploratory well with the cost return to PSWID and the taxpayers. As of now, this may still happen, but since the recall, the new board members will do all possible to prevent continued progress on the K2.
"No reason for PSWID to exist"! With water from the K2 in the system, eliminating PSWID might have been a decision made by the past board. Now the stakes are much higher.
The $300,000 to drill the exploratory well was saved by a very conservative board. Since the recall, the new PSWID board has taken a very different approach which includes proposing budget items for travel cost for the chairman to travel from his primary residence in Mesa, hiring a manager, and most disturbing, spending what will be, not thousands, but millions of dollars to buy out Brooke Utilities and create the infrastructure to operate it.
This money can only come from us, the taxpayers. People need to understand that it is not hard for the PSWID board to levy this tax on us. Each year they set a budget, once approved by the board, the county simply sets a tax rate to cover that budget and we pay. And if the PSWID buys out the water company it will simply be another line item on our tax bill. I agree, the community needs to decide the direction they want to go, get involved, and make it happen. There may be no reason for the PSWID to exist.
Past PSWID chairman, Gary Sherlock