April 6, 2012

Tribe looks to amend water agreement

Tribe looks to amend water agreement
By Jerry W. Kram
The agreement between the Fort Berthold Rural Water and the City of Parshall will need some tweaking, Three Affiliated Tribe Council Member Mervin Packineau told the Parshall City Council.
Packineau presented a letter that would amend the agreement that provides the city water at no cost from the rural water system that will soon go into operation. The current agreement states that the city will provide water service to tribal members in the community. The tribe agreed to provide the city with 650 gallons of water per minute, which is more than enough for city residents and allows the city to sell the excess to industrial customers.
Packineau said the agreement needs to be amended because when the city annexed a half mile of land around its previous border, it expanded into the FBRW’s territory. Packineau said federal law gives rural water systems exclusive rights to supply water outside of existing city limits, even if the city later expands into those areas. However, he added, FBRW has no interest in challenging the city for customers inside the new city limits. So the first part of the agreement will cede the FBRW’s right to those customers to Parshall.

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