by John Prosser…….
In the last few weeks, I have read several newspaper articles that included quotes, and heard a radio interview with FKAA’s Executive Director that were fraught with misinformation. FKAA appears to be intentionally misleading public opinion concerning the recent lawsuit against coerced placement of sewage pump stations on private property.
Zuelch claimed that the DOAH already heard a similar complaint: “we have been here before.” He claimed the grinders were judged fine. That is untrue. The Dump the Pumps complaint protested construction permits for an unsafe, fatally flawed overall design that does not even meet minimum standards. Nowhere did it address the specific wrong of grinder pumps being placed on private property against the owners’ will, and those owners being required to subsidize construction with an expensive electrical circuit at their own expense. The past action was intended to cause a redesign of the entire system. This one merely asks that the entire collection system (including every pump station) be on County property and all construction costs be included with the system. Like Marathon.
Zuelch claimed that “The use of grinder pumps has saved a lot of people a lot of money” and “…we pay the majority of the costs” [of connection]. He’s a politician-lawyer, and with due respect, has no clue about connection cost. I am a licensed plumber and GC and can assure you that those with a grinder pump in their yard usually will pay more for a connection than their neighbor connecting at the street. The minimum electrical circuit costs about $1,000 and requires a subcontract. Electrical quotes reportedly have run to $6,000! The grinder pit’s obstruction may prevent use of machinery, necessitating a slow, tortuous jackhammer. But a pipe to the street is usually shallow and retails for only $2.20 per foot (maybe $50 for pipe). The fittings, government fees, septic abandonment, and time requirements are about the same. No contest. And what are privacy and property rights worth? Let those who might save money request grinders on their lots. Justice requires that others have their expenses, property rights and privacy maintained equal to others.