Tryon finds another homeowner with septic tank paying for sewer

Published 8:10 pm Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Council discusses need for policy on reimbursement
The Town of Tryon has discovered another home inside town limits whose residents have been paying for town sewer service although the home is not connected and has a septic tank.
Council discussed the recent discovery June 21. After detailed discussions on what it costs the town to hook properties up to sewer service, council decided a policy is needed regarding reimbursement. The latest discovery involved a renter who had been paying for town sewer for approximately three years.
The case discovered most recently was on West Livingston Street. The drain fill was determined to be faulty, so the town connected the home to city service.
Another case was discovered in December 2011, when Lorina Cunningham had been paying for town sewer for the last 21 years. The town tapped Cunningham’s home onto sewer and reimbursed her for the last five years of payment, or $1,986.89.
State law says the town can reimburse homeowners for the last two years of payment. Council decided a policy is needed because the cost of hooking homes up to sewer service usually equals more than two years of paying for service with the town. A sewer tap fee costs $850, plus any pipe that is needed and man hours. In the recent case, the renter had paid approximately $1,300 for service.
Council discussed whether the policy should be that if any new cases are discovered, the homeowner will not be charged for sewer taps but will also not be reimbursed for service fees paid.
The town plans to draft a policy and discuss it during the August meeting, as the town does not meet in July.
For in-town residents who have septic tanks, the town’s policy is to maintain the septic tanks, such as paying for pumping.

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