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Auburn, Calif – Directors of the Placer County Water Agency agreed on Thursday (Sept. 6) to borrow up to $35 million to finance water system infrastructure improvements over the coming two years.

Under the financial plan developed over the past six months by PCWA Director of Financial Services Joseph H. Parker, the agency will issue certificates of participation (COPs) backed by water system revenues.

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Parker said the certificates, which are similar to bonds, will be offered to investors in early October and will be repaid by the water agency over a 30-year period.

Directors were pleased to learn that PCWA has earned solid financial ratings from both Moody’s (A1) and Standard and Poor’s (AA-) financial services.  Parker said the ratings reflect the strong financial status that PCWA has attained and is a very favorable rating for a local governmental agency.

Before approving the financial plan, the Board held a public hearing (there were no public comments) and reviewed lists of projects that will be funded through the borrowing.

The borrowing is intended to fund $20 million in system expansion projects that would be paid for through developer-paid water connection charge revenues and another $12 million in water customer-paid revenues to renew and replace aging infrastructure.

The financial plan won unanimous approval from the Board who also convened and approved the debt borrowing plan as the Placer County Water Agency Public Facilities Corporation.

‘This is a most conservative path,’ said District 5 Director Otis Wollan, who noted the agency considered different types and levels of financing.  ‘It allows us to make important raw and treated water system upgrades while also retaining our strong borrowing capacity capabilities for the future.’

In other business, directors:

  • heard a presentation from project engineer Tony Firenzi on the American River Pump Station project, which is nearing completion.ย  He reported on and showed a video of Tuesday (Sept. 4) restoration and rewatering of the North Fork American River at Auburn.ย  The river now runs though its historic channel, as well as an adjacent channel to divert water to a new Agency pump station.ย  PCWA expects the pump station
  • completed and operational by January.ย  Public use of the river is expected to resume next spring following final construction.ย  The entire project cost is $75 million and is a partnership of PCWA, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the State Parks and Recreation.
  • heard a report from Director of Field Services Mike Nichol on the annual canal maintenance outage planned for this fall by the Pacific Gas and Electric Company and PCWA.ย  The five-week outage is scheduled to begin in mid Oct.
  • approved facilities agreements for water service to 121 parcels in the Timilick development and 80 parcels in the Martis Camp development, both located in eastern Placer County’s Martis Valley and to be supplied with agency groundwater.
  • reviewed plans for the PCWA 50th Anniversary celebration and open house to be held at the PCWA Business Center at 144 Ferguson Road in Auburn on Thursday (Sept. 13).ย 

PCWA board meetings are open to the public.ย  Information on PCWA board meetings may be obtained by calling the Clerk to the Board at (530) 823-4850.

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