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Council approves waterline repair expenditures

Tara Alatorre ~ Staff~ 3/11/2015

CAVE CREEK – The Cave Creek Town Council unanimously agreed to approve over half a million dollars in expenditures for waterline improvements at their March 3 meeting, which will fix 50 percent of the town’s main waterline leaks that are contributing to major malfunctions identified in the municipal water utility system.
                  The $514,654 in expenditures were funded by the budget and part of a larger effort by the town council to manage its water resources more sustainably, while addressing major failures at the town’s water utility company, which resulted in 123 million gallons of drinking water to be dumped in a dry wash, according to the Cave Creek Water Advisory Committee.            
                  “This is an ongoing issue, we knew it when we bought the water company that there were great questions about the integrity of the system and it needs to be fixed,” said Councilman Thomas McGuire at the council meeting.
                  Over $400,000 will be spent for pipeline materials and contractors for the installation services, on Victoria, Surrey, and Tandem drives. After the waterline improvements are complete, $103,000 will go towards scheduled roadway repairs on: east Coachwhip, Rockrose, El Sendero and Quailbrush drives, north 46 Street and Fairway Trail, and Desert Creek Lane.
                  “If we don’t fix ‘em, they fall apart,” said Councilman Ernie Bunch about why he voted for both expenditure items.
                  The waterline improvements unanimously passed 7-0.  The roadway improvements passed 5-0 with Mayor Vincent Francia absent from the vote, and Councilman Reg Monachino excusing himself because he lives where the roadway repairs will take place.
                  “It’s an accumulation of 18-months-worth of work, and no matter what it will set the stage for responsible management of our utilities going forward,” said Vice Mayor Adam Trenk, referring to the fact that it was the last action the town council will take before he and three other councilmen face recall elections.
                  In addition to expenditures, the town council also unanimously agreed to raise the rates of the town’s rodeo grounds facility in a 7-0 vote.  The new rates still allow the facility to have a competitive advantage to seven other facilities the town compared in its research.
                  The new daily fee is $300 a day, which still makes Cave Creek’s rodeo facility less expensive than the other facilities compared, which range from $350 to $750 a day, according to the town’s research.
                  “I am glad we are actually going to get this place paying for itself,” said Councilman Bunch about raising the fees.