The Malta Town Board will be looking to over 60 homeowners in the Cramer Hills neighborhood in deciding how to provide sewer service to the area.
Representatives from Clough Harbour and Associates presented the preliminary results of a sewer district study at a workshop on Thursday, Nov. 13, and to ask for guidance from the board. Three scenarios were presented, all of them costly.
To hook up just the six homes with reported problems, each home would pay an estimated $6,029 annually for 20 years. Expanding the district to include all the homes on Little Drive circle, 36 units, would bring the cost to $2,216 annually.
The figures include a 25 percent contingency and figure a 4.5 percent debt service. Also included would be grinder pumps for the homes, though maintenance of the pumps would be the responsibility of the homeowners.
A third option would be to include outlying parcels draining by gravity to a pumping station. That option would cost $2,638 annually for 60 homes. The higher cost was attributed to the extra construction and the station’s proximity to DEC-protected wetlands.
There are a lot of hurdles with alternative three, said Christopher Motyl, an engineer with Clough Harbour. `From the construction standpoint, the cost is much greater.`
The cost could also be stretched out over 30 years.
The $18,900 study is being conducted in hopes of hooking a number of homes into the Saratoga County Sewer District. The neighborhood lies just to the east of Route 9, and there are 6 reported instances of failing septic systems, though petitions brought to the town indicate many other homeowners would be interested in receiving sewer service.
Several residents at the workshop expressed surprise at the steep estimates, as did Supervisor Paul Sausville.
`It strikes me as being high,` he said of a potential $120,000 price tag for six homeowners.
`These numbers may appear at this point to be somewhat steep,` said Motyl. `We have contingencies built in. As design proceeds, the contingencies come down.`
Placing the cost of creating the sewer district on homeowners would have to be approved by the state Department of Audit and Control, since the annual cost to homeowners would be above $667. If denied, a 51 percent referendum of the district could authorize its creation.
Clough Harbour needs direction from the board before proceeding, and the town plans to mail the 60 parcels in alternative three, as well as nearby parcels that might be able to hook into the system at a later date. They will look to the straw poll to determine if enough support exists for one of the plans to move forward, and are hoping most residents return the questionnaire.
`We need to know what the neighbors want us to do,` said Councilman Peter Klotz, adding that without at least 51 percent support for a plan, it would be pointless to move forward.
`That’s really the next question,` he said.“