After two years of negotiations, the Village and Town of Stillwater have a new water purchase contract in place.
The 20-year contract, which is effective Jan. 1, 2018, was approved by the Board of Trustees Tuesday (Jan. 16) and signed by Mayor Frank Tatum and Town Supervisor Edward Kinowski.
“I think this is a really positive move that has occurred and I thank everyone who was involved in the process,” Mayor Tatum said.
Under the new contract, the town has agreed to purchase water from the village for customers living in the town’s Water Districts No. 5 and No. 5, Extension 1. These districts are located just north of the village border and includes residents in the Saratoga Hills Mobile Home Park located off County Rt. 76, and residents living between Grace More Road along Rt. 76 to the village line.
The village owns the water delivery system in those town water districts and buys its water from the Saratoga County Water Authority. The village will continue to do that and sell that water to the town at a rate of 1.5 times the rate village “inside users” pay, according to the new contract. The town will buy the water from the village, meter it, and charge its customers at a usage rate the town will set.
In addition to Saratoga Hills, which the village directly served until now, the town would acquire about 20 customers living to the west of the village, who are served under independent contracts with the village.
The new contract calls for two separate billing periods. Billing for the Saratoga Hills Mobile Home Park will begin on April 1, 2018 and continue quarterly after that. Billing for the remaining properties will also begin on April 1, 2018, but continue on a semi-annual basis thereafter.
A long history
The village has a long history of selling water to the town. The village water system was put into service in 1939, and sometime after World War II, the two municipalities began doing business, Trustee Basile explained.
Back then the town created Water District No. 1 serving about 600 customers south of the village line to the Mechanicville city line. For many years, the town purchased its water from the village to serve those customers. The water district recently became part of a new renamed Water District No. 6.
About three years ago, the town dedicated funding to establish its own water system to serve those and other customers in the southern part of the town. The town put in its own water holding tank and began purchasing water from the Saratoga County Water Authority to serve Water District No. 6. In November 2017 the town discontinued purchasing water from the village for the former District No. 1 customers.
The village, which used to draw and treat its water from the Hudson River before it was deemed contaminated with PCBs, set up a direct pipeline to the Saratoga County Water Authority and began buying water from the SCWA in 2012. That same pipeline now serves the town’s Water District No. 5 and Water District No. 5, Extension 1.
The town wanted to purchase water from the village to serve its residents along County Rt. 76, but needed an official contract to make that happen, Basile said. The last 20-year contract between the two entities expired in 2016 and contained no provision for Water District No. 5 and Water District No. 5, Extension 1. The contract will now enable property owners in Water District No. 5, Extension 1 to connect to that water pipeline. Three property owners have already done so, Basile said.