The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

PUD discusses possible survey for water merger


The Wahkiakum County PUD Board of Commissioners listened to reports and approved a new credit card purchasing policy at their meeting July 5. They also discussed the possibility of conducting a poll to ascertain the public’s interest in a merger of the PUD and the Town of Cathlamet’s water systems.

General Manager Dave Tramblie reported that he had been informed that the Cathlamet transformer was in good condition after a recent assessment.

Pacific County has begun construction on their portion of the intertie, Tramblie said. Meanwhile, he planned to sign a contract with a directional boring contractor, to directional bore behind a guardrail for a distance of about 300 feet on their own portion of the project. The directional bore will cost the PUD about $15,000, but the decision to do so was met with some relief from the crew.

“The guys were pretty happy when I told them this morning,” Tramblie said. “There isn’t much room behind the guardrail, and it’s a cliff. It will keep us off the highway as well.”

Tramblie plans to give the engineers at Gray & Osborne the go ahead to begin the western Wahkiakum water system comprehensive plan. The plan needs to be completed next year, and will be good for 10 years. It will cost the PUD $18,000.

“It allows us to extend a main without having to get state approval,” Tramblie said. “It will eliminate a lot of time and hassle. I think it’s in the PUD’s best interest.”

The coming Washington State Department of Transportation Puget Island bridge project has brought up some concerns about the water main that sits beneath the deck. After considering several options, Tramblie has decided not to rush the matter.

“I’m running into a lot of pitfalls with this,” he said. “We need to do our research and make sure whatever we do, we do the right thing.”

“Sounds like a good approach,” Commissioner Dennis Reid said.

Tramblie reported that he had attended a Pacific County Commissioners meeting to request a 10 year franchise agreement to continue serving customers on Salmon Creek Road. There was just one more bit of paperwork regarding insurance that he needed to provide to Pacific County.

The Department of Health conducted a sanitary survey on the western Wahkiakum water system. According to Tramblie, the PUD had not received a written report yet, but there were a couple minor issues that needed to be upgraded.

Auditor Erin Wilson went over the financial reports for the electrical system, the Puget Island water system, and the western Wahkiakum water system.

The capital projects that the PUD would like to tackle this year include painting the office building and the water warehouse, an office remodel which will include security updates, and possibly a new stairway from the office building to the water warehouse.

“The security upgrade is needed. It’s a good project and it needs to get done,” Reid said.

Tramblie said he would also like to buy 1,000 electric AMR meters, which he estimated would cost approximately $55,000-60,000.


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