Castle Valley to leave GWSSA

Castle Valley plans to withdraw from two districts in the Grand Water and Sewer Service Agency, citing the lack of benefit to their citizens. Neither the Grand County Special Service Water District nor the Grand County Water Conservancy District, from which they are withdrawing, plans to contest the withdrawal.

It started in the early 1980s. Grand County citizens voted for a bond to finance water infrastructure projects and as a result, Grand County residents have paid taxes on the bond for more than 30 years. The bond was paid off in early 2018 and according to GWSSA Manager Dana Van Horn, the agency has no plans to pursue another bond.

“We’re done collecting taxes,” said Van Horn. “It’s unlikely we would go for [another bond]. It’s unlikely most districts would go for a voted bond like that anymore. I don’t think it’s near as common as it used to be.”

Nonetheless, Castle Valley wishes to withdraw from the two water districts. In a June 18 letter to the Grand County Special Service Water District, Castle Valley gave notice of their intent to withdraw from the GCSSWD and the GCWCD.

“[The districts] are of no financial or service benefits to the Town of Castle Valley. Even a small percentage of the taxes collected by these agencies from Castle Valley residents over the last 30-plus years could have significantly helped our own essential water infrastructure projects. Castle Valley wants this withdrawal before we become encumbered by [debt] derived by any new projects the GCSSWD or the GWSSA pursue,” the letter said.

“Basically we feel that there’s potential in the future to end up being included in another huge infrastructure project that doesn’t benefit us in any way, so it’s time to withdraw,” added Castle Valley Mayor Jazmine Duncan.

The next step is for Castle Valley to have their town boundaries surveyed. Then they will request a resolution from the districts from which they are withdrawing. A public hearing will follow.

ByBy Rose Egelhoff

The Times-Independent