"I don't know what we're going to do, and I don't know what I'm going to recommend at this point," Maruca said, adding he'd heard of the issue from IUSD officials. "It's a lot of money."
IUSD Trustee Chuck Jernigan said the school board was given a presentation on the issue by Mike King, IID water department manager, at the IUSD's board meeting Thursday.
"We're looking for relief and assistance from the (Imperial Irrigation) District," Jernigan said, adding that the school district does not have the money to pay more than what was estimated and to do otherwise would deprive schoolchildren of needed resources.
"We're putting the future of our children in their hands," Jernigan said
He added IID officials were apologetic for the delayed billing and humble in their presentation.
He said the IUSD wrote a letter asking that the issue be placed on the IID board agenda for discussion with IUSD officials, at which time the school district will seek relief from having to pay the higher amount.
An IID letter sent to the county says a formal estimate of the project, using plastic pipe, was about $500,000 higher than the original agreement among the agencies, bringing the new total, at the time, to $1.8 million.
"Upon resolution of actual costs, we found that material costs were actually an additional $276,000, corresponding construction costs an additional $309,000 and engineering an additional $35,000 (above the initial cost estimate of $1.8 million) for a resulting project cost of $2.43 million," the letter states.
The letter goes on to state IID is willing to work on a payment plan with the agencies that will meet their current and future cash flow requirements.
Jernigan said the city of Imperial had language removed from the agreement that mentioned actual costs and retained language that committed the city to only pay the estimated costs agreed to at the time of the agreement.
Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.