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Nampa irrigation rate increasing by 19.98% on March 1

The Nampa City Council on Monday approved a rate increase of 19.98% for residential and commercial irrigation and hook-up fees.

NAMPA, Idaho — The Nampa City Council on Monday approved a rate increase for residential and commercial irrigation.

Council members voted 4-2 in favor of an increase of 19.98% for both irrigation fees and hook-up fees. The rate bumps the cost for an average residential lot by a little more than $30 per year. 

The rates will increase to the approved amount beginning March 1. 

City of Nampa irrigation users pay a flat fee to access irrigation water based on the size of their property. The increase also applies to commercial properties using irrigation water, according to a news release.

Officials said the increase "was needed for operations, maintenance and systematic replacement of irrigation infrastructure." According to the City of Nampa, it manages 516 miles of irrigation pipe. 

24% of the irrigation its responsible for was installed in the 1970s and 1980s. The city said 107 miles of the irrigation pipe are "near the end of their useful life."

23 mainline breaks happened in 2022, and 102 line breaks occurred between 2016 and 2021, according to the release. The City of Nampa's goal is to replace five miles of irrigation pipes each year, but only .88 miles have been replaced over the past three fiscal years. 

The Board of Appraisers recommended the irrigation cost increase based on the Producer Price Index (PPI-West), which showed a 19.98% increase from October 2021 to October 2022. 

The City of Nampa said emergency repairs cost "significantly ore" than planned improvements. Nampa became the first Idaho city to implement a utility impact fee for irrigation, water and wastewater costs from new developments in the city. 

Irrigation season typically runs from mid-April to late September, depending on water availability. 

More information on Nampa's irrigation system and the rate increase can be found in pages 330-370 of the Feb. 6 city council packet

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