“This puts us in a great position to continue protecting West Slope water for generations to come,” said River District General Manager Andy Mueller. “We’re thankful for the support from voters, and we’re ready to keep serving constituents by partnering with West Slope communities to complete water projects that will sustain flowing rivers, productive agriculture and our growing rural economies on the West Slope.”
Ballot measure 7A increased the mill levy in the 15-county district from 0.252 mills to 0.5 mills. Property tax collections at the 0.5 mill rate will take effect in 2021, and they are expected to raise $4.9 million in additional revenue. $4.2 million of this revenue will directly fund projects to secure water supplies on the West Slope in five categories: productive agriculture, infrastructure, healthy rivers, watershed health and water quality, conservation and efficiency. The rest will address budgetary restrictions caused by the Gallagher Amendment and Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. No new staff positions will be created with this revenue.
The District Board and staff are excited to move quickly in launching the District’s partnership water project program.