A state plan to switch homes in several communities near the Wekiva River from septic tanks to a county sewer system has residents outraged.
They’re worried about construction hardships and potential costs to them, but the state claims it’s necessary to cut down on pollution.
More than 200 people showed up at Clary Springs Elementary School Wednesday for a meeting about the issue.
Residents sounded off about the proposal that would ultimately transform their neighborhoods and potentially cost them a lot of money.
More than 350 homeowners would be included in the $8.8 million plan, with roughly 75 percent covered by state funds.
Homeowners face the prospect of picking up the rest, resulting in a $3,300 tab each.
“Some of the homeowners are on fixed incomes. Where does that money come from? You’re on a tight budget. It could be the difference between making ends meet,” said State Rep. Bryan Nelson of Orange County.
Many residents spoke out about the high cost.
“If this gets approved, what happens if the economy tanks again?” said one resident, who wasn’t identified.
Citizens are also worried about the mess the year-and-a-half construction project would cause.
Some don’t think it’s necessary at all and don’t blame pollution in the Wekiva River on their septic tanks.
“Our septic systems operate fine. We have them reviewed every two to three years. They’re pumped. They’re cleaned,” said resident Tony SanMartino. “Nobody’s tested the environment underneath the ground water to see if there’s a problem.”
Wednesday night’s meeting was only for residents to express their concerns, and no decision was made.