County approves issuance of $5 million in bonds for county projects

YERINGTON - Lyon County commissioners approved $5 million in water and sewer bonds, marking the first time in years the county has borrowed money.

The board agreed in August to borrow up to $8 million to fund county sewer and water improvement projects in Dayton and Mound House.

Last week's action formalized the issuance of the first of the general obligation bonds. Purchased through the Municipal Bond Bank of the State of Nevada, the reduced interest bonds will be repaid through user assessment fees on a 20-year repayment schedule.

According to county officials, the last time the county borrowed money was to fund the building of the Mason Valley (Yerington) swimming pool. The pool was under county control at that time.

Commissioner David Fulstone noted the pressing need for improvements to the two water systems.

"There is a real need to do water projects in this area properly. I do not take it lightly that we are indebting the residents of the area, but there is a need," he said.

County Engineer Dan O'Brien held public meetings with Dayton and Mound House residents to explain the proposed projects and the effects the costs will have on current rate structures. He asked the board to consider holding the rate increase meeting in Dayton.

"The Dayton residents have requested it. I feel it is legitimate request and a good idea to hold it there," O'Brien told the board. "I want to stress that this bond is just the funding vehicle for all improvements. Specific projects will be discussed at future workshops.'

The first of the proposed improvements, expected to be completed in 2000, include a 12-inch water transmission main from Rose Peak to the Six Mile Road area and a new well and transmission line in the Rolling "A" area. Bonding will eventually fund 12 projects.

According to Lyon County Utilities Division Manager Mark Clarkson, the majority of the money, except for the rehabilitation of the Mound House water system, will be used for new projects and do not qualify for most grant funding.

Making the motion for approval of the bond purchase, Commissioner Bob Milz said, "The county has never borrowed money before. This whole thing is about taking control, being in charge. I think this is a giant step forward."


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