Monday’s mail provided an “official check” from the Nampa Meridian Irrigation District in the amount of $4.78 and a note saying the Board of Directors had reviewed the plight of Brian Bandhauer and waived the taxes previously paid by the GUARDIAN.
As a certified GROWTHOPHOBE, we have given the issue of charging homeowners for water they can’t receive or use a lot of thought. It is simply wrong to hold their homes hostage with threat of liens and foreclosure because of old law.
Don’t be surprised if you see some proposed legislation regarding irrigation water during the next session. Given the general pro business and anti citizen view of many legislators, this could be a hard sell. The GUARDIAN thinks all politics are local, so why not put the pressure where it will be felt?
As an alternative we hereby suggest to the Ada Commishes a simple ordinance or “condition” for approving any new development as follows:
“ANY LAND WITH EXISTING WATER RIGHTS CANNOT BE SUBDIVIDED OR DEVELOPED IN ANY MANNER UNLESS A METHOD FOR DELIVERY OF IRRIGATION WATER IS PROVIDED FOR EACH PARCEL PRIOR TO SALE OF ANY LAND PARCEL.” Ditches, canals, pipes, pumps, and hoses could all be used to provide the water.
This simple act would preclude developers from snookering buyers into situations like the one which trapped the Bandhauers, who didn’t even know they owed a water tax.
Such an ordinance at the county level would be easy to pass:
–it would benefit homeowners who are forced to water their lawns with costly domestic water
–it would help the environment by not wasting irrigation water
–it would conserve domestic water supplies
–it would be cost effective for home owners
–it would benefit irrigation districts because people would not “opt out”
–It would be the same as providing sewer, water, gas, and electricity
Only greedy developers wishing to take advantage of would-be buyers are likely to object.
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