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Lagoon project inches closer to reality

September 2, 2018 GMT

LAUGHLIN — Clark County Commissioners recently approved a series of agenda items that keep the Laughlin Lagoon project moving forward.

The board approved awarding the dredging project to Technology Construction, Inc., for a cost of $3,642,000. They also approved a contract for professional surveying services, accepted a quitclaim deed from the state and approved authorizing the county manager or her designee to sign a land and water conservation fund project agreement in conjunction with the land transfer.

Commissioners approved transferring approximately $1.7 million from the Fort Mohave Development Fund and an ordinance authorizing the issuance of local improvement bonds to finance the waterfront project.

The transfer of money from the development fund is to supplement the total cost of the project, which is approximately $5.1 million which includes all necessary incidentals that have been or will be incurred for the project according to the documents included with the board’s agenda.

Approximately $3.4 million will be paid by property owners in the Special Improvement District 162A via bonds, which were also approved by the commissioners.

The land transfer involves the State of Nevada’s Division of State Lands transferring 10.89 acres near the lagoon to Clark County. Dredged material will be stockpiled and dewatered on the northeast corner of the property and could be used as a source of soils material for other projects in the future.

The stipulations of the conditional transfer include local governments must operate and maintain the property as a park and that the use and enjoyment of the property by residents must not be diminished.

The land and water conservation fund project agreement was a companion item to the quitclaim deed. The State Parks Division will require the county to develop, operate and maintain the property for public outdoor recreation to a minimum standard of open space, signage and public access in accordance with the Land and Water Conservation Fund Federal Financial Assistance Manual, based on information included in the board’s agenda packet.

“The dredging of the aquatic roads and the building of a 2,000 feet of public health beach in the Laughlin Lagoon can be considered as important to our community’s reasonable growth as Needles Highway, State Route 163, Thomas Edison Drive and Bruce Woodbury Drive have been,” said Jim Maniaci, Laughlin Town Advisory Board chair and president of the Laughlin Economic Development Corporation.

When finished early next year, because it is screened by the Colorado River channelization dike, the removal of up to seven feet of silt will open up the only quiet-water body along the Colorado River in Laughlin, Maniaci said.

“Now Kenny Lin’s company can proceed with the construction of almost 300 high-class motor coach recreational vehicle spaces, many of which will have casitas for the bigger motor coach travelers,” Maniaci said. “That will add greatly to Laughlin’s visitors’ contributions to our economy.”

“I expect that the upgraded lagoon, long known by Clark County and Nevada officials as a unique gem, will help neighboring Big Bend of the Colorado State Recreation Park by supplementing what is featured there,” he added.

Growth needs to be at a reasonable rate so Laughlin can absorb new residents into the culture, society and economy, Maniaci said.

“The (LEDC) has worked throughout its short history to attract businesses and industries which we lack, but for which we know our existing population, dominated by retirees, can support. This would add a third sector to our present economy of tourism and retirees,” Maniaci said.