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County officials see plans for latest sewer plant

August 16, 2004|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Jefferson County sewer officials have devised a scaled-down version of a new sewer plant after an earlier proposal met with controversy because of its cost.

Under the new proposal presented to the Jefferson County Commission on Thursday, the plant would be near Blue Ridge Outfitters, which is east of Charles Town off U.S. 340.

The first plant proposed would have treated about 1 million gallons of sewage a day but the current proposal calls for a plant that would process 500,000 gallons a day, said Susannne Lawton, general manager of the Jefferson County Public Service District.

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Although no cost estimates have been developed for the construction of the plant, it would cost less than the first one, Lawton said.

The first sewer plant proposed would have been built along Cattail Run and would have cost $25 million.

Residents and officials were concerned that sewer rates could sharply increase to help pay for the first plant.

Lawton said she and other public service district officials will "try our best" to keep sewer rates the same under the new proposal.

To help pay for the plant, public service district officials are proposing that developers begin paying the agency $26.98 a month for every house they plan to build, Lawton said.

The fee would become the homeowners' responsibility when that person takes ownership of the home, Lawton said.

Other sources of funding could come in the form of grants and bond money, Lawton said.

The commissioners were encouraged by the plan, although they were still concerned about any possible rate increases.

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