Letters: Sewer needs to be done right, and fairly for residents

September 21, 2007 11:00 pm

Jan Ventura wrote in the Tuesday Triplicate that homeowners would have us paying for our new sewer plant (Letter to the Editor "Sewer rate hikes: An unfair distribution of ‘votes'," Sept. 18).

She may call me anytime and I will explain to her that her figures are very wrong. My sewer rate is $40.95. In December (if this proposal passes), it will go up an estimated $10 per month. This totals to an increase of $120 per year and $50.90 in December—not $8.17 per month. The total estimate by the city is that at the end of three years I will be paying $70.90 per month and $360 per year.

I am, as are many people, living on a set income, which is why I moved to this beautiful city in the first place. We understand we need a new sewer and new sewer pipes. Where is the money going to come from for the 50-year-old pipes? What we are asking for, and have not gotten so far, is total clarification of the details and a written time of closure for the paying of the modifications.

This proposition as it now stands is open-ended and can keep that $10 per month increase coming until it drives me from this town—or maybe that's what they want. It seems to me that little thought was put into this proposition as it was the one and only approach to the problem the city could think of. Even then, it is only a partial solution; we need to be thinking of the whole problem, which I don't believe can be taken care of in three years with $42.5 million.

The problem of housing prices itself will also be affected depending on whether the proposition passes or not. I am extremely lucky to live in an owned home, but this is going to hit the renters hard, as this fee will probably have to be passed on to them.

It seems that everyone wants growth, but tries to get the horse to pull the wagon the wrong way. Two bright spots are our new Wal-Mart and Home Depot, but did the local government do anything to invite them here, or did they come on the companies' initiative? Our city fathers love to tout our tourism, and it helps a lot. However, while they use our hotels and eateries, they are reluctant to pass even a small amount of the sewer expenditure to them.

Remember, we will be paying for this not for three years, but for 20 or more, so let's get it right the first time.

Duwayne Holcombe

Crescent City