The Crow Wing County Board approved the Cuyuna Range Water District's routine business Tuesday.
The county board oversees the water district's day-to-day activities, such as water district correspondence and administrative matters.
Last year the county agreed to support the establishment of the water district that includes the cities of Crosby, Ironton, Cuyuna and Deerwood and part of the townships of Deerwood and Irondale.
Water district officials asked commissioners to waive their authority over the district. John Kolb, the water district's attorney, said this would allow the water district to seek district court action to make it its own authority.
"I think it'd be premature to take any waiver action at this time," said Commissioner Ed Larsen.
"I agree," said Commissioner Terry Sluss. "There are too many unknowns and many details that still need to be hashed out at the local level."
Les Smith of the Cuyuna Range does not want the county to waive the water district's authority.
"If this is waived to the district (court) our voice will be smaller," Smith said. "There are a number of concerns as a community and many are just against the project."
The county board took no action on the waiver.
The water district is mainly for residential and commercial areas that surround Serpent Lake. About 80 percent of the 1,600 people affected by the establishment of a water district are residential.
The water district seeks to combine the cities' and the townships' water systems into one. Currently, township residents have individual wells.
The estimated cost of the project is $9 million. The district plans to apply for grants for funding.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.