LAUGHLIN ― The town advisory board recently approved two resolutions regarding the Laughlin Southland.
One resolution supports a request for the Big Bend Water District Board of Trustees to order the design of a water trunk line to serve the Laughlin Southland and the other supports a request to the Clark County Water Reclamation District Board of Trustees to order the 70 percent design of an expandable package treatment plant to serve the Southland.
The Southland is 9,000 acres of land that’s on the south end of Laughlin. It’s remained undeveloped since ENN China did not relocate and use it for a solar manufacturing and production facility. There have been discussions since then about what to do with and how to use the land.
During the public comment portion, Cheryl Crow, community member, said she’s been in Laughlin for nearly 30 years and has seen little involvement from the county and little growth in Laughlin. The Southland is a prime opportunity, she continued, to have that growth.
“This is the perfect time (for growth) to happen,” she said. It will take water and sewer and a little work but the 9,000 acres can be used for recreation, manufacturing, homes or whatever but it has to be serviced first, she added.
Bob Bilbray, of the Laughlin Economic Development Corporation, reminded the board the county finished the Best Use Analysis a few years ago. There was never a bigger question than what the estimated costs would be to have utilities on the site, he said. These resolutions will answer that question, he added.
Having the answer will help market the land, Bilbray said. It’s information that can be given to developers, he added.
Bilbray said Laughlin has now become one of three major targets for job creation in Nevada. He mentioned other large scale projects happening in areas such as North Las Vegas.
He said he feels Laughlin is well positioned to get support from Carson City and the governor’s office if they can show exactly what time and cost of construction would be.
In answering questions, Bilbray said power on the property isn’t so much the issue, neither is fiber optics. The big issue is cost, time and permitting issues, he continued.
There’s a lot of work to do because it goes through state lands and that will mean a lot of permitting and going through governmental agencies, Bilbray said. Cost is another issue because the existing water treatment plant can’t be used on the Southland. A water trunk line is needed also so the cost could be around $7 to $8 million for that line and another $2 million for the tank, he added.
Bilbray said he didn’t think it would cost much to get the 70 percent design of an expandable package treatment plant and the length of time for a study should be reasonable, about four to six months.