Star Valley residents served by the Milky Way Well could face higher water bills if the town does not get enough of them to participate in a survey due by Jan. 31.
To get $200,000 for improvements to the well from the Arizona Department of Housing, the town is conducting a special survey of residents served by the well. It needs to have at least 75 percent of the residents respond and at least 51 percent of those must have low to moderate incomes.
Efforts to get the survey started in December had council members going door-to-door. At the Jan. 15 meeting of the council, town clerk Lois Johnson reported the town had received about 112 surveys back, but need at least 167 surveys to hit the 75 percent goal.
Council members were going to continue their door-to-door visits last week.
An environmental review report is also needed by ADOH for the grant. Johnson said staff at the Central Arizona Association of Governments is working on that part of the project.
More on the Milky Way Well
The town’s water department is working to make improvements to the well already. It was hoped the work could be included in the grant, but because of the time constraints, the work needs to proceed before the start of summer.
The well needs a new pump to produce enough water to meet warm weather needs. Right now, the well produces 12 gallons per minute. A new pump could boost the output to 40-50 gallons per minute.
The only bid submitted came in at $8,000. The town will seek more bids.
The new pump and other improvements should minimize costs of further work down the road. The new pump would replace one put in just last summer, which the town would move to another out-of-service well.
The water department will report back to the council on the cost and impact of the upgrades in February.