Last night, Gary Hume and I attended the public budget hearing for the Timber Lakes Water Special Services District (the Water Company). There were four other property owners present. Part of the proceedings included an amendment to the Water Company’s 2008 budget to raise water rates by $15 per month per lot effective on the November 2008 bill. The Water Company Board explained that the purpose of the $15 rate increase is to pay off most or all of the construction loan interest that will be accruing between now and the time the construction project is completed. They estimate that this small increase now, will save us, the property owners, approximately $1 million over the life of the bond. This savings occurs because we will pay off the construction interest instead of rolling it into the bond and paying interest on interest for twenty years.

Even though none of us wants to pay a higher water bill, this rate increase makes sound economic sense. Anything that can be done to decrease the amount we will have to borrow when the bond is issued, will save money for every Timber Lakes property owner. The Water Company also discussed other ways they are working to decrease or hold down the cost of the construction project.

We appreciate their efforts to be careful with our money and will continue to work with them to find ways to help both entities. After all, all the money for both of our organizations comes from the same pockets, yours and mine.

We also encouraged and invited the Water Company to let us post public notices for their future rate hearings on our website. The turnout last night was disappointing. Perhaps more people will attend if their meetings are also posted on our website.

As a reminder, if you have questions about your water bill or the current pipeline construction project, please contact the Water Company, not the Timber Lakes Property Association. We are posting this information here, as a service to our owners, but we are not the Water Company.