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

PUD consolidates systems financially

 


The Wahkiakum County PUD Board of Commissioners moved forward with the Skamokawa Water Consolidation project, adopted a resolution to consolidate their systems financially, and listened to reports on Tuesday.

General Manager Dave Tramblie gave an update of the ongoing activity at the PUD. He said that the lobby remains closed to walk in customers, but all staff are working.

“I believe we are able to provide the customer support that is required,” he said.

He was pleased to share that there have only been three minor outages since March 16. He was also pleased with how much tree trimming the PUD was able to get done over a recent four day period.

Tramblie reported that the PUD had started a water and electrical project in the Fossil Creek Road area to replace an eight inch PVC pipe with two inch HDPE.

“The reason for the pipe reduction is the relocation of our well site many years ago,” Tramblie said. “We only have a handful of customers on that stretch of water main. The overhead electric conductor is being replaced with underground.”

The project should be completed soon, and the crew will begin working on another project on Hoikka Road.

Noanet and the PUD’s Broadband Consultant Steve Carson have turned their focus to obtaining grant funds for the PUD potential broadband project. The PUD hopes to build a broadband infrastructure to provide much improved internet service to every resident on the east side of Wahkiakum County.

“The state is opening up about $18 million in funding,” Tramblie said.

The PUD takes water samples at County Line Park and the Skamokawa Water System. Tramblie said that one of those samples came back unsatisfactory last Thursday, but it was followed up with a second test at four locations on each system and they all came back satisfactory.

“There was no E. Coli,” Tramblie said.

Contract tree trimming and pole testing were planned for this year, but will be moved into next years budget because of the health situation, he said.

Following much discussion and an open period for public comment, the commissioners adopted a resolution authorizing the consolidation of the utility functions of the district. The resolution states that the water systems and the electric systems currently operated by the district shall be combined into a single system. It also states that all income, revenues, receipts, profits, and other monies derived by the district from any of the systems shall constitute revenue to the consolidated system.

Talk turned to the Skamokawa Water Consolidation Project. The PUD only received one bid for the project, from Advanced Excavating Specialists, for over $450,000.

The commissioners approved the bid, and awarded the project to AES. The project will be paid for by a grant from the State of Washington. The grant also pays for the engineering that has already been completed, and for an engineer to be on site during construction.

Because of the cost of the project, it was determined that a 700 foot section of the project along Steamboat Slough could not be completed.

The grant does not pay for customers affected by the project to bring the water from the meter to their homes. The PUD decided to do that for the customers themselves. They will do it in house, and at their own cost.

The project is expected to be completed by November 1.

 

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