DUBOIS – Citizens of the Kiwanis Trail area of Sandy Township enquired into the staus of municipal water and sewage systems in their neighborhood at the Sandy Township Municipal Authority board meeting Monday night.
Such a project was proposed in the late 1980s when the Environmental Protection Agency identified the Kiwanis Trail Area as one of the problem sewage areas in Sandy Township. West Liberty, also identified as a problem area, paid the fees and went forward with a system for their area.
The majority of property owners in Kiwanis Trail, according to those at the meeting, the expense was too great and wouldn’t be worth it to go ahead with a new system. Instead the state Department of Environmental Protection accepted the proposal of leaving the lot systems in place and mandating pumping every three years. Now property owners want to install municipal water and sewer systems, as well testing has shown the presence of contaminates such as E-coli bacteria.
“Everybody is entitled to clean drinking water and shouldn’t have to fight for it,” said Dave Sylvis, board member. “We are all in agreement that we want to do this, but the price tag can be very high. We are trying to do this as economically as possible.”
Supervisor Jim Jeffers also sympathises with the problem, assuring that “the board is doing all it can to help.”
The board has been working on a way to resolve the cost issue for these projects and advised the audience at the meeting not to let the matter drop, but to get this issue before state representatives.
The board proposed investigating the possibilty of grants for this project, though initial research suggested that funding can be difficult to obtain and if the morjority of the property owners are against the project it can greatly slow the process of obtaining funding.
Board Chairman Brady LaBorde said he believes it is in the community’s best interest to install a public water system first prior to a sewage system.
Citizens declared they are not criticizing the board, they are just asking for help.