Work on extending the sewer and water lines to the development will begin next summer, with construction taking about four months. The city plans to obtain a low-interest loan to pay for construction work, and while the water line won’t present a problem, routing for the sewer line has more complications, and four separate options are being considered.
The city of Sebring, Fla., is moving forward with plans to connect The Country Club of Sebring (Fla.) to its municipal water and sewer systems, but the route to accomplish the sewer part of it remains undecided, the Sebring-based Highlands Today reported.
Sebring Utilities Director Bob Boggus said he’s hoping that work on extending sewer and water lines to the development will begin next summer, with construction taking about four months, Today reported.
The Sebring City Council hired Polston Engineering for $113,200 to produce construction plans and to assist with the creation of a facilities plan. Boggus said the plans are required to obtain a low-interest loan to pay for the construction work. He said the city plans to apply for the loan in February, Today reported.
The construction of the lines may lead to additional customers besides Country Club of Sebring. Highlands Hammock State Park is interested in obtaining city water and sewer services, Boggus said.
Earlier this year, the Sebring City Council approved spending up to $720,000 to purchase the Country Club of Sebring utilities system. That came after Greg Harris, then president of Country Club Utilities, announced in 2015 he would abandon the system. He said that state’s refusal to allow a rate increase made running it financially unfeasible, Today reported.
Until the city can connect the utilities to the municipal system, Sebring will continue to run the Country Club of Sebring water and sewer systems. He said the wastewater treatment plant is not in good shape and will be demolished once the sewer line is finished, Today reported.
“We have to maintain it, but we don’t want to spend any more money than we have to on that plant,” he said.
The construction of the water line won’t present a problem, but routing for the sewer line has more complications. Initially, the city approached one property owner about running the line through that family’s property, Boggus said. That family said it wasn’t interested. More recently, the city asked Duke Energy to run the line near the edge of Duke’s utilities easement in that area. The city is still waiting on a response from Duke. Boggus said that Duke would apparently have no problem if the city wanted to cross the easement instead running a line just inside the edge, Today reported.
Another possibility, Boggus said, is running the line on some undeveloped property owned by a corporation in Coral Gables. The city hasn’t contacted that property owner. Finally, he said, the fourth alternative would be to run the line along some streets in Sebring Hills, but that will be a longer and more costly route, Today reported.
The presentation for the loan will include the estimated costs of all the routes, Boggus said. That’s in case the city needs to use the more expensive alternative, he said.
As for water services, the city plans to continue using the water system at Country Club of Sebring. But, he said, a new above ground water tank is needed. That can’t be constructed until the water line is complete, Today reported.
There are no plans for any rate increases, Boggus said, regardless of whether or not the city needs the more costly route for the wastewater treatment system. Money from utility customers at Country Club of Sebring will pay back the loan, Today reported.
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