Some East Milton residents will soon have the option to ditch their septic tanks and tie-in to the City sewer system as the system expands across Blackwater River to the Ward Basin Road area.
The expansion is costing the City nearly $1 million dollars, paid for with a state-revolving loan funds. The City is installing a lift station and a main sewer pipe along Ward Basin Road from Highway 90 to just south of Interstate 10. Residents on both sides of Ward Basin Road will have the option of tying-in to the new system at their own cost.
The project has been in the works for a while, according to City Manager Brian Watkins. He said the City sent a survey to the residents to gauge interest in expanding the sewer into East Milton. Sixty-five percent of the residents said they would be interested.
Homeowners and developers will have to pay from their own pocket to hook-up to the system. New homes and construction are at a set rate of $4,080. Existing homes looking to abandon a septic system will receive a 50 percent discount and pay $2,040.
There will be additional costs with hooking up to the system, according to Watkins. Anyone tying-in to the system will need a grinder pump, paid by the homeowner. He said there is no way to gravity feed the system.
Some of the homes are in low-lying areas along Blackwater River and rest on a high-water table. Because of this, they have to use an above-ground septic tank that is then buried, called a mound-system, according to Watkins. The mound system takes up space in the yard.
Watkins said there is a potential to improve water quality along Blackwater River by reducing the amount of septic tanks in the area. The sewage, instead of being drained by septic tanks, would be treated at the wastewater treatment facility just south of downtown Milton.
The sewer expansion comes months after the City purchased Sundial Utilities in Bagdad for $3 million. The project is expected to be complete in Oct, according to Watkins.
New Homes - $4,080
Old Homes with Septic Tank - $2,040
Base Fee - $16.70 for first 3,000 gallons
Every additional 1,000 gallons - $6.20