Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

January 30, 2013

Koester comments on sewer proposal in letter to Crossville City Council


Submitted

CROSSVILLE — Gentlemen:

I have been looking forward to your meeting on the Tansi Sewer proposal on Tuesday, Dec.18. Unfortunately the Cumberland County Building and Grounds Committee has called a meeting that same afternoon and, as secretary of that committee, I will not be able to attend your meeting.

I know there is a certain amount of controversy over the Tansi Sewer Proposal put forward by Mayor Graham. There is always question and controversy over any new thoughts or proposals, but I believe this proposal has merit and is worth pursuing.

In my opinion the original sewer proposals put forth by the Tansi Waste Management/Tansi Sewer Utility District had some major problems in that, in their various iterations, property owners not desiring the sewer would have to pay in one form or another, be it an abutment fee or a charge for a service they might not be using. The costs were high and clearly some people simply could not afford it and might be faced with a serious financial hardship should the line come down their street.

The current proposal Mayor Graham has put forth removes most of the objections to the previous plans. First off the majority of the residents (51 percent) would decide if they wanted a sewer and if they did they would pay for it, while the 49 percent would not have to connect and use the sewer and would not have to pay anything. That should remove most of the reservations of the Tansi residents.

The City of Crossville would take over the assets of TSUD and would run the sewer system, something the Lake Tansi Property Owner’s Association (POA) is ill equipped to do. And equally important to the POA and the Lake Tansi residents the city would reimburse to POA for a portion of their costs of the TSUD system.

The City would also take over the South Cumberland Utility District and would take a big step toward having one consolidated water district, which, again in my opinion, would be good for the citizens of this county. One system, one supplier can equate to lower costs and better service.

We have a city government and we have a county government, yet we all live in this same area. We are all dependent upon one another and we share many common interests. If we are forward looking and think about what is in the best interests of all the citizens, be they city or county residents, and consider economies of scale, this proposal has much merit and deserves serious consideration.

I would like to think that political differences could be put aside and wise decisions could be made for the benefit of all.

As a Tansi resident and as a county commissioner representing the 5th District I urge you all to give this proposal serious consideration. In the long term this could greatly benefit all of us and could help set the stage for a closer working relationship between all of the entities serving this area.

Respectfully,

Joseph W. Koester

County Commissioner

Representing the

5th Dis trict