The Kennewick Irrigation District and the city of Kennewick now can move forward on developing a plan for the city to buy KID’s land next to the Toyota Center and take over one of KID’s potable water systems.
The Kennewick City Council recently approved having city staff develop a formal agreement for the land sale and for the city to own, operate and maintain the potable water system that serves 48 homes in the Elliot Lake neighborhood.
And the city recently sold bonds that will allow the city to buy about 13.7 acres of land from KID for about $2.4 million. The city wants to own the land to better help with the redevelopment of the Vista Field area.
The city was able to sell the bonds when the market was favorable, receiving an interest rate of 2.5 percent, City Manager Marie Mosley recently told the council.
In addition to buying the land near the coliseum, the bonds will provide $4.7 million to pay for the land, construction and equipment needed for the new fire station at Kellogg Street and 10th Avenue and another $450,000 to buy land adjacent to the Southridge Sports & Events Complex, said Dan Legard, city finance manager.
The city council agreed to buy more than three acres at 4233 W. 27th Ave. last month.
The bonds will be paid back using existing capital improvement program dollars.
The city also refinanced the $6 million in debt left over from building the city police station. The city will save about $483,000 when paying back the 2006 bonds because of the lower interest rate, Mosley said.
The city council previously had authorized the bond sale March 3.
The KID board had already given its staff the needed go-ahead to continue negotiations earlier this month.
Elliot Lake homes already are using city water, but it is delivered through a KID-owned system. The city has provided water to the homes for about 11 years, after the system’s wells no longer provided enough water to serve them.
The city and KID have been working together for some time on how best to transfer the Elliot Lake potable water system. The system would be brought up to city standard before the transfer, with KID using some of the land sale revenue for upgrading the water system.
Elliot Lake homeowners would see what they pay for water decline once the water system is transferred to the city and KID would continue to provide irrigation water.