Manager's Message

For the Week of December 10, 2018

Aaron Frank, Town Manager

Selectboard Holds Public Meeting on Malletts Bay Sewer Project: 

The Colchester Selectboard held a special meeting at the Colchester High School to share information about the Malletts Bay Sewer project. The purpose of the project is to remove human waste bacteria from the inner Bay, which is the location of our primary Town beach and where our youth learn to swim. Property owners and residents in the proposed sewer service area were all directly invited to the meeting.

In 2010 the Town of Colchester completed an Integrated Water Resources Management Study which documented through DNA testing that human waste bacteria is in the inner Bay. The Town has identified multiple septic systems that have failed due to: lack of replacement areas, distance to surface waters, poor soil, rocky land, and/or depth to groundwater. The State of Vermont determined that the Town was eligible for state and federal funding for a sewer project due to the contamination of the Bay caused by septic systems adjacent to the Bay.

The Town has identified funding for the project including state and federal grants; a 2% federal loan; user fees; connection fees for future development; and use of the local option tax, which would be paid back over time from the sewer system fees. No property taxes would be needed to fund the project.

This project has been considered for over 50 years. The Selectboard will be receiving updates on project details and financing from Town staff until their January 8, 2019 meeting, at which time they will consider whether the matter should go before the voters for consideration on Town Meeting Day 2019. This would be a significant project for Colchester – I urge all residents to stay informed on this issue.

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