County commissioners approve PBAC increase
November 21, 2019
The County Commissioners approved the motion of increasing dues for the Palouse Basin Aquifer Committee at their Nov. 18 meeting.
The administrative dues would be increased from $5,000 to $6,750 starting next fiscal year.
PBAC maintains a network of water level monitoring instruments throughout the Palouse Basin and funds a variety of research projects aimed at gaining increased understanding of the behavior of the basin aquifer systems.
Commissioner Art Swannack said that there hasn't been a dues increase since approximately 2005. He said that these dues are increasing as administrative costs have gone up.
“The research side is not funded by the county. That is funded by the universities and the cities, but this would be an increase in covering administrative costs,” Swannack said.
Commissioner Dean Kinzer asked if anyone had dropped out of PBAC.
Swannack said in regards no one has stopped their contributions, but the University of Idaho has dropped its research contribution.
“The two cities, Pullman and Moscow; the two universities, Washington State University and University of Idaho, and the two counties, Whitman and Latah, are all members to PBAC,” Swannack said. “The cities and universities each pay $20,000 a year for administrative costs, the counties have been paying $5,000 and will be moving to $6,750 a year. There will be some kind of increase with the universities as well.”
Swannack mentioned members of PBAC have discussed raising the cost for a while and decided this was a reasonable increase since there hasn't been one in awhile.