That mailing begins a plan for bringing accurate information about the sewer to the public. A public information meeting is planned for April 23 at 7pm in the Lansing Middle School Auditorium at which Miller says people will have a chance to get the facts and have their questions answered.
The MPR explains the need for a municipal sewer, defines the town benefit area and the initial sewer improvement area, discusses the environmental setting and outlines design considerations, plant operation, and costs. The proposed district will be comprised of the entire town with the exception of the Village of Lansing. Tier 1 property owners will pay 60% of the cost of building the sewer, plus operation and maintenance and usage fees once they hook up. Those in Tier 2 (who do not immediately receive service) will pay the remaining 45% of the cost of construction on an Ad-Valorum basis. In the first year that will cost $26.90 per $100,000 of assessed property value.
Two of seven appendixes list every property in two tiers and show the sewer cost for each property. For many homes in Tier 1 the annual cost is expected to be in the low to mid $400 range. Most homes in Tier 2 would pay around $50, give or take. To save on cost and paper those two appendixes will be omitted from the postal mailing, but will be available on the Town Web Site and in the Town Clerk's office.
Miller and Councilman Ed LaVigne said that many people who oppose the sewer are changing their mind when they learn the facts about the project. Sewer committee members are hoping that is what will happen at the April 23rd meeting. Miller says that after a presentation people will have a chance to ask questions and get the facts. She says that is different from a public hearing in which residents will get to advocate for or against the project.
The committee has been working on a presentation for the meeting that they plan to try out at the next Planning Board meeting.
The Town Board hopes to be able to approve a public interest order creating the sewer district in May, and to hold a district-wide vote in September.