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Willow Creek feud finale scheduled for today

A cease-fire in the long-standing feud between Nye County and the current owners of the former Willow Creek Golf Course may finally be resolved this afternoon. If so, it is likely that sewer users will foot the bill for the cleanup.

An item on the agenda of special meeting of the Pahrump Regional Planning Commission scheduled for 2 p.m. this afternoon at the Nye County Board of County Commissioners’ chambers, will address the pond clean-up road block which has stalled forward movement of the property rehab project at the newly re-named Discovery Park.

The proposed improvements could reflect an approximate 9 percent increase for all Utilities, Inc. sewer users.

A exception waiver is being considered in place of a conditional use permit for repairs and expansion of the Utilities Inc. sewage effluent system. The outlined proposed work includes the repair and modification of two receiving basins and pump houses.

The appeal of the commission’s decision requiring the permit will simultaneously be addressed.

Utilities, Inc. has long contended that it is not required to obtain a permit. Approval of the waiver, according to county documents, would allow for the resolution of the existing legal dispute as well as clean up of the effluent ponds that present a public health hazard.

Once the remediation work at the former Willow Creek Golf Course has begun, according to Utilities, Inc. President Wendy Barnett, all sewer rate users may see an increase in rates. An amendment to Utilities, Inc. integrated resource plan has been submitted to the regulatory agency, Nevada’s Public Utilities Commission, outlining the intention to request a rate increase based on capital improvements.

Those capital improvements, Barnett said, include improvements to the filtration system at sewer treatment plant #3, which would be used to handle the effluent from the existing contaminated ponds.

If approved by the commission following a hearing in March, Utilities, Inc. will propose a sewer rate increase in late June. Estimates for projected rate increases hinge on approval of both the amendment to the integrated resource plan and consent by the Public Utilities Commission for the increase, Barnett said.

Affected and interested persons may file a petition for leave to intervene with the Public Utilities Commission by Feb. 25. A notice of intent to participate as a commenter may also be filed.

The public utility commission has scheduled a consumer session for public comment on the issue on Wednesday, March 6 at 6 p.m. at the Nye County Board of County Commissioners’ chambers located at 2100 E. Walt Williams Drive in Pahrump.

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