I remain concerned about the estimated cost of this project and the future direction that will be set if the District proceeds down the proposed path. The Phase 1 project will lock the district into an extremely expensive process that will not provide for opportunities to expand or alter the treatment process in the future. At $21.7 million. Phase 1 is not affordable for the size of the District. In my opinion, a better approach is to provide for a more conventional and modest increase in the capacity of the existing plant at this time, with a long term goal of working to expand the boundaries of the district into a “Regional Treatment System”. I realize that the District does not currently have jurisdiction to expand its boundaries, but this is the direction that I believe should be taken. In my experience, the economies of scale that could be achieved by including; the Yellowstone Club, Spanish Peaks, Moonlight Basin, the Canyon area, and eventually the multiple septic systems in the region, into a centralized collection and treatment system makes the most sense.
Phase I appears to be an affordable project based on preliminary collaboration with the District, utilizing some existing District reserves, and receipt of a contribution from the Resort Tax Board. Doing a smaller “modest” project at the existing site would not be cost-effective, as the filtration facility is already at capacity and any small project at the secondary treatment site will require extensive site modifications and yard piping modifications. Planning, engineering and administering a Regional Treatment System will require several years and millions of additional monies for land acquisition, sewer realignment, right-of-ways, etc. The Yellowstone Club and Moonlight Basin have a new treatment plant and one under construction, respectively, so regionalization with those entities is too late.