GOLDEN VALLEY – The future of the Golden Valley Improvement District (GVID) remains unclear following lengthy discussion at Monday’s Mohave County Board of Supervisors(BOS) meeting. Members of the BOS serve as the governing board for the GVID but there are options to transition the entity to a domestic (citizen) administered district or to sell it to a Missouri-based company interested in a possible purchase.
Golden Valley residents supplied a mix of input during board consideration of what to do with the GVID.
Patrick Stone said the GVID has operated well over the years, despite a surcharge controversy and some other hiccups that he said have been adequately addressed.
“It’s like the old saying `if it’s not broke, let’s not fix it'”, Paul told the board, tossing in another cliche for good measure. “I don’t think there’s a reason to throw the baby out with the bathwater.”
William Paul also seems to support maintaining the status quo. “We are concerned that any of the suggested changes to GVID may result in significant rate increases,” he said.
Jennifer Esposito believes the county has done a poor job of operating the district that would be better administered domestically. She indicated a preference for conversion of the GVID to citizen control before any decision might be made about any possible sale to the private sector.
Jo Anna McMahon, Vice President of Government Affairs for St. Louis-based Central States Water Resources, said the company operating as Cactus State Utility in Arizona would like to discuss acquisition of the GVID as its parent increases its portfolio of serving more than 100,000 customers in 11 states. The company already owns and operates the White Hills Water Company and Sacramento Utilities that serve other areas of Golden Valley.
“Boy, what an opportunity,” exclaimed Jim Hellwig, a strong advocate for sale to the private sector.
Angle Homes President Tyler Angle said eventual transition of the district to a private operator is much preferred over the domestic administration option.
“I’m opposed to the county electing a board of citizens,” Angle said. “I think that would be a downgrade and a huge risk.”
Dist. 4 supervisor Jean Bishop said various meetings and input reflect no consensus.
“It seems like Golden Valley is mixed,” she said. “A third of the people want to keep it with the county. A third want their own board of directors and then another third seem interested in the water utility company purchase.”
Bishop suggested it might be best to convert the district to domestic governance, allowing the citizen board to either administer the GVID or sell it at some point. The Board approved Bishop’s motion to continue the matter for possible definitive decisions at the Oc. 16 BOS meeting.
Yet the GVID may well be heading toward domestic conversion. The approved Bishop motion also invites citizens living within the
GVID to submit applications for possible appointment to a domestic governing board whose future members would be determined at election.
Eligible residents interested in serving a domestic GVID board have until Oct. 12 to submit application with Clerk of the Board Ginny Anderson.
Deputy county attorney William Davis advised that soliciting applications does not mean the county is locked into transition mode. He said the board will be free to keep the GVID as is, or appoint governing board members and approve the domestic governance transition on Oct. 16.