Letter: Kill the zombie Lake Powell pipeline

First Published      Last Updated Dec 06 2016 06:12 am

Some years ago when Rep. Mike Noel introduced the idea of the Lake Powell pipeline to Kane County residents, he assured them that it would be paid for by a water deal with Blue Castle Holdings, a company that wanted to build a nuclear power plant on the Green River. Noel had crafted a contract with Blue Castle to lease river water owned by Kane County in exchange for large amounts of money. It now appears that this deal has fallen through.

Blue Castle's first payment of $100,000 to Kane County Water Conservancy District was due in mid-October but never received.

Blue Castle has defaulted on their agreement, leaving the financing of the Lake Powell pipeline high and dry. Given the risks and the high cost of nuclear power, it is doubtful that this nuke plant will ever be built.

Meanwhile, in September, a group of Utah's most qualified economists issued their third report indicating that the Lake Powell pipeline is grossly unaffordable, and that the latest plan to finance the project is deeply flawed.

Our taxpayer association has followed this high-priced project for years. The Lake Powell pipeline is unnecessary for the future growth of Kane and Washington counties. The water source is unreliable and the pipeline project, if it is ever built, will jack up property taxes, building impact fees and water service costs for everyone.

It is time to kill this zombie pipeline, and stop wasting valuable taxpayer dollars on a project that we do not need and cannot afford.

Sky Chaney

President, Taxpayer Association of Kane County