Monday, August 4, 2014

(Nevada County) Mystic Mine Road district ‘dysfunctional,’ grand jury says

June 24, 2014
The Union of Grass Valley
By Keri Brenner

Mystic Mine Road Community Services District is “dysfunctional” and, as a result, its roads have not been properly maintained, a new grand jury report says.
The Nevada County grand jury’s report, released Monday, indicates that only Golden Eagle and Mystic Mine roads are being maintained, despite a mandate for all roads in the district’s 97-parcel area to be kept up.
The grand jury, which received a complaint about road maintenance on Oct. 9, 2013, also found that the district did not use competitive bidding to control maintenance and repair costs.
“Thus, the district does not have a way of knowing whether they are getting fair value for their money,” the report says.
In addition, the district reported to the grand jury that all of its tax revenue ($120 annually for each of 97 parcels = $11,640) were spent on road maintenance. However, the Nevada County Auditor-Controller’s Office said there was a current balance of $23,205 in the district accounts as of March 5.
In other findings, the grand jury found the Mystic Mine District’s by-laws have not been updated, despite an urging to do so in the 2012-13 grand jury report.
Also, the grand jury questioned whether the independent audit fees itemized by the district were too high.
“The board should obtain quotes from qualified audit firms and select that which would be most cost-effective,” the report says. “The board should also investigate alternate audit procedures with the Nevada county Auditor-Controller’s Office.”
Mystic Mine Road Community Services District, located off the Rough and Ready Highway near Penn Valley, is one of 24 independent special districts in Nevada County and was established by the county board of supervisors in 1981.
It has no full-time employees and the five-member elected board are all volunteers.
To see a copy of the report, visit the Nevada County website at
To contact Staff Writer Keri Brenner, email or call 530-477-4239.

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