The Metropolitan Water District of Salt Lake approved a 10-point list of conditions for Sandy's annexation Monday that includes $6.4 million in system improvements to be paid by Sandy.
Sandy and MWD officials have agreed on the annexation terms, but how and if the Salt Lake County Water Conservancy District will let Sandy out of its district is still unresolved.The annexation terms include MWD's paying $2.5 million to build west-side aqueduct connections, an expense Salt Lake City would have paid otherwise, said LeRoy W. Hooton Jr., Salt Lake City public works director.
Darrel Scow, Sandy public works director, said Sandy's city council is united in its desire to withdraw from the county conservancy district and join MWD. A feasibility study on the switch should be finished before Sandy's July 12 council meeting, during which MWD's approval of the conditions and acceptance of Sandy's petition to join MWD will be discussed.
Scow said the feasibility study will also be presented to the county conservancy district July 21, which is the next opportunity Sandy officials will have to formally discuss the switch with the county district's board.
"We would like to make the transition as easy as we can for both parties, especially the county conservancy district," Scow said. "It's almost a stroke of genius how well everything is moving at this point."
Scow said Sandy already has a $4 million capital improvements plan that coincides with the $6.4 million in improvements needed to make the Sandy and MWD systems compatible. On that list of improvements is an $8 million storage reservoir the city is now buying land for, he said. Building the reservoir is one of MWD's requirements.
A significant portion of the $6.4 million, which is to be paid up-front, would be spent expanding the capacity of the water treatment plants in Parleys and Little Cottonwood canyons.
Other conditions agreed between Sandy and MWD include:
-Sandy would pay the same price for water as Salt Lake City, which is currently $55 per acre foot.
-Sandy would build or repay to MWD the cost of building all necessary facilities needed to take water from the plant in Little Cottonwood Canyon.
-Sandy would be limited to 25 million gallons of water per day from the Little Cottonwood plant and would have to build a storage reservoir to provide peaking capacity.
-The MWD board would be expanded from five members to seven, with Sandy having no more than two representatives on the board.
MWD General Manager Nick Sefakis said MWD's approval of annexation terms followed Sandy's petition to MWD for annexation and is a completely separate issue from Sandy's withdrawal from the county district.