Marrowstone: PUD chooses compromise assessment method for water system

MARROWSTONE ISLAND — Jefferson County Public Utility District commissioners appeared to appease both sides in the island’s ongoing water controversy by choosing a preliminary assessment method that will charge each household equally while allowing a partial exemption for people with good wells.

“I think they were trying to take the middle road,” said Mary Karen McHattie of Conserve Water First, a group which opposes the formation of limited utility district to provide public water to the island.

“We think that this is a fair way to go,” said Gloria Hays of Water First, which supports the LUD. “We supported the ERU (equivalent residential unit) as our first choice, but we feel this is very fair.”

McHattie and Hays were two of the 50 people who attended Wednesday’s utility district meeting, held at the Marrowstone Island Garden Club.

About half of the 21 people who spoke on their preference for assessment favored the ERU method, which divides the cost the system, estimated at $4.4 million, equally among the number of tax parcels on the island.

“It’s easy to calculate and administer,” said Kelly Hays. “Imagine where we would be today if you decided on May 1 to use it. We’d be two months into the project and $50,000 richer.”


The rest of the story appears in Thursday’s Peninsula Daily News Jefferson County edition.

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