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ACTION NEEDED TUESDAY, MAY 25, 2010
 
Dear Township Officials:
 
The OTA needs your help.  SB 110 will be before the House Environment & Brownfields Committee (and possibly the full House) on Wednesday.  SB 110 revises the Household Sewage and Small Flow On-Site Sewage Treatment Systems (HSTS) Law.

 

SB 110 will permit the continued use of as well as provide for proper inspection of household sewer treatment systems.  SB 110 provides sustainable and cost effective individual sewage treatment system solutions that protect the environment while maintaining the current wastewater infrastructure options.

 

There is a provision in SB 110 that prohibits municipalities from requiring annexation of any property owners that are required to tap into a sewer system due to a health crisis.  This language is very important for the viability of townships, as generally townships are not permitted to have their own sewer systems.

 

The Ohio Municipal League is attempting to get this language removed from the bill and so the OTA NEEDS YOUR HELP!

 

Please call or e-mail your House and Senate members and express your support of SB 110, as passed by the Senate.   Express your support for the bill (NO CHANGES IN THE HOUSE) and particularly the provision that prohibits annexation should a township resident be forced to tap into a municipal sewer system.  Below are some points to highlight.

 

- Language was inserted in the Senate, prior to passage last week, which would exempt existing municipal sewer contracts, such that cities would not be forced to breach their existing agreements by virtue of the passage of SB 110.  This ensures that cities are not forced to breach contracts, while also ensuring that the intent of SB 110 remains in tact.

 

- The OTA believes this compromise makes certain SB 110 will not create a de facto annexation scenario.

 

- Provision in question is not a radical new idea, as municipalities have been extending their water and sewer lines beyond their boundaries for decades without requiring annexation.

 

- Landowners ordered to tap into a sewer pursuant to SB 110 still would be required to pay all tap-in and usage fees.  These fees are generally at a substantial increase over what municipal residents pay.  SB 110 does not preclude a municipality from charging higher rates to non-residents.

 

- A municipality would still be permitted to grow their boundaries.  SB 110 does not prohibit a property owner from voluntarily entering into an annexation with a municipality using current methods prescribed in Revised Code Chapter 709.  A property owner who doesn’t wish to pay the higher non-resident sewer rates could voluntarily annex.

 



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