Who, What, Where, When, How Much

  1. City of Sandpoint Residents are eligible to vote
  2. Election to authorize issuing a bond to finance expansion of the Lake Pend Oreille Water Treatment Facility.  Election requires 50% plus one to pass.
  3. The election will be at Sandpoint City Hall
  4. The election is on November 3, 2009 (the same day as the election for Sandpoint City Council).  Absentee voting is available now until November 3.
  5. The election requests authorization for the City to incur debt up to $17 Million.  The actual amount of debt will likely be substantially less.  If the election passes, US Department of Agriculture Rural Development will provide a 30% grant (or $5.1 Million).

Rates are expected to increase by 24% over two years.  This amounts to around $0.20 per day or $6 per month.

Why now?

In low flow years, there is not enough water to meet demand for water during peak periods now.  With continued gradual growth Sandpoint estimates that demand for water will exceed supply by over 5 million gallons per day.

In a slow economy public improvements are less expensive to construct.  In other words, there will not likely be a less expensive time to construct these improvements

Availability of stimulus funds in the form of a $5.1 Million grant from USDA Rural Development decreases the amount needed to be raised locally.  The grant is not available without a successful bond election.

Growth will continue.  Whether the bond issue passes or not, people will move here.  If  water is not available in Sandpoint, housing prices may increase as demand for available hook-ups increases.  Sprawl may occur as surrounding water districts provide water to new residential and commercial developments.

Specifics of Plan

Reconstructing the Lake Pend Oreille Water Treatment Facility will replace the existing sand filters with membrane technology.  Membranes are a proven technology that provide a physical barrier between pathogens, viruses, pharmaceuticals and the water delivered to our customers.

The technology allows for modular growth.  The facility will be constructed to allow for installation of additional “skids” of membrane containers as demand increase.