CLOVIS (KSMX)- Things got heat during a two-hour discussion at the Clovis City Commission meeting Thursday. The Clovis City Commission ultimately decided to move ahead on a raise in property tax rates to fund the interim groundwater portion of the Ute Water Project with the granted funds from state and federal government.
The commission room was filled with over 30 people wishing to voice their opinions on the matter however after a presentation from Mayor David Lanford on the dire water situation in the area, almost all came to the conclusion that actions need to be taken to guarantee the future water sustainability.
The commission approved a tax hike, and introduction of an ordinance rededicating gross receipts taxes, to provide $15 million of the Eastern New Mexico Water Utility Authority’s $20 million share of an interim groundwater pipeline in Curry and Roosevelt counties. The $90 million project, with $30 million paid by the state and $40 million paid by the federal government, would eventually connect to the Ute Reservoir in Quay County but would in the interim act as a functional water delivery method for water authority members.
The issue was passed with a 6-2 vote. Commissioners Helen Casaus and Gary Elliott voted against the measure, believing the tax increase should be put to voters.
The option that had the most positive feedback among the board of commissioners as well as the public, would make sure that the property tax increase will not go into effect until and unless the state and federal government provide their $70 million share.
Commissioners Helen Casaus and Gary Elliott voted against the measure, believing the tax increase should be put to voters.