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County water board to remain with Central Nevada authority

The Nye County Water District Governing Board will continue its membership at the Central Nevada Regional Water Authority in 2017.

At the last meeting, governing board officials approved the request for the payment of the $7,500 for the annual membership fee at the organization.

“I have attended a couple of these meetings by way of teleconference, and the information that’s come forth in those meetings is very prudent, very concise and up to date,” board member Ken Searles said. “I would suggest very strongly that we continue to be a member of this organization and pay the fees that they’ve requested.”

“I think that this is an important organization to interact with,” Oz Wichman, the board’s interim general manager said.

The Central Nevada Regional Water Authority is a county unit of local government that includes Churchill, Elko, Esmeralda, Eureka, Lander, Nye, Pershing and White Pine counties. The authority “collaboratively and proactively addresses water resource issues common” to those counties.

The authority’s mission statement is to “protect the water resources in member counties so these counties will not only have an economic future, but their valued quality of life and natural environment is maintained.”

The water authority exists under Nevada’s Interlocal Cooperation Act. Its delegated authority acts separately from member counties and has a 23-member board of directors, including 10 county commissioners and six former county commissioners.

Wichman recommended reappointing Joni Eastley and Midge Carver, current representatives from Nye County, to the authority.

Dan Schinhofen, the liaison to the Nye County Water District from the Nye County Commission, agreed to replace Commissioner Frank Carbone, who will leave his office at the end of this year.

The water authority has multiple functions. Among them are formulating and presenting positions to the Nevada Legislature, state agencies, U.S. Congress, federal agencies and other government entities on water-related issues; facilitating the development and maintenance of a water resource database and encouraging citizen participation in water supply and management issues.

“They do an awful amount of legwork that we cannot do with regard to monitoring the state Legislature and (are) in contact with the state legislators with regard to what their feelings on water issues are,” Searles said.

David Hall, chair of the governing board, echoed Searles’ comments.

“I agree that this is a very worthwhile organization for us to be a member of,” he said.

“I would encourage every member of this board to take advantage of the availability to these meetings to listen to what they have to say and see how important I feel they happen to be with regards to information that’s presented to this board and how they represent, not only this county, but the other rural counties in Nevada,” Searles said.

Nye County Water District Governing Board forwarded the recommendation to continue the membership to Nye County commissioners.

Contact reporter Daria Sokolova at dsokolova@pvtimes.com. On Twitter: @dariasokolova77

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