Medford water issues to be heard by Eagle Point Council May 24

Eagle Point, Central Point, Phoenix and Talent have put their concerns over water rate increases and water rights before the Medford Water Commission in recent months. The coalition has met with the Medford water board upon several occasions and had other sessions scheduled which apparently have been canceled by Medford Water Commission Manager Larry Rains.

Eagle Point’s City Attorney Joe Kellerman received a letter from John Huttl, City of Medford Attorney, who also acts as the attorney for the Medford Water Commission, regarding service to Eagle Point. Central Point received a similar letter. It is not known if the other two communities received similar documents.

The letter to Kellerman is summarized at the beginning by saying “Offer to provide services- Notice of termination of prior service agreement and reservation of rights to terminate service.”

Attorney Huttl said in his letter “…pending execution of a new service agreement, as an accommodation to you, the Medford Water Commission will continue treatment and transport of your water during the summer months and delivery of our surplus water during the winter months on a month-to-month basis…” He went on to say, “Until we have an new agreement in place, we are unable to provide Eagle Point with winter-time service off the transmission line.”

The letter continues, …”Commission reserves the right to discontinue service if agreement cannot be reached on terms acceptable to the commission within six months of the date of this letter.”

Huttl concludes by saying, “We regret we have reached this point, but your claim to our water rights, and your failure to execute a new agreement leave us with little option.”

Coalition members are expected to review their efforts before the Eagle Point City Council on May 24, after which the council can decide how they wish to respond to the Medford Water Commission.
By Nancy Leonard
Of the Independent


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