THE people have spoken but it seems South Gippsland Water isn’t listening.
Both sides of this latest debate about the effectiveness of $21 million Poowong, Loch, Nyora Sewerage Scheme have good points to make, different points as it turns out.
The people of Nyora in particular are concerned that with 120 property owners in their area offered the opportunity to opt out of the scheme or pay $5000 to be part of it, that there are doing just that – opting out.
And they claim that the very issues that they wanted the scheme to fix, the threat of ground water contamination, the sewage running down the road or sitting in the drains; will not be sorted out if up to half of the property owners in the town retain their septics and stay outside the scheme.
No one has ever officially confirmed the health risks but it stands to reason that everyone should have been included.
The water authority tells us that 140 landowners in total across the three towns (120 in Nyora) were offered the voluntary $5000 option, in other words 140 x $5000 = $700,000 in total as the cost of including everyone.
Surely it wouldn’t cost much to offer a payment plan to get everyone on board.
But apparently the legislation doesn’t allow for that.
The water authority on the other hand says that the low cost to landowners is an absolute gift, unlikely to ever be repeated again throughout the State of Victoria, and those offered the $5000 option should take it, especially given that the actual cost is $40,000 per property. Good point, unless you haven’t got the money to pay upfront.
The water authority doesn’t look like they are going to budge on this one (after exhaustive negotiations to get is this far) so we suggest you get an extension on your home mortgage and make the best investment in your property you are ever likely to make.
It’s people versus bureaucracy again – SENTINEL-TIMES COMMENT