Old Lyme voters to decide fate of wastewater, parking proposals

Old Lyme - Residents will be able to vote on two separate funding requests at a town meeting Tuesday: a proposed wastewater management feasibility study and parking initiatives for Sound View Beach.

The feasibility study would cost up to $185,000 and the parking initiatives, up to $27,300. The study, except for an $18,000 application fee, is eligible for 55 percent reimbursement through the federal Clean Water Act.

The parking proposal recommended by the Board of Selectmen would add two kiosks along Hartford Avenue to collect street parking fees and would update the parking layout to horizontal rather than parallel parking. The design would include new signs and would be laid out according to state Department of Transportation standards.

Town officials also are proposing a study to consider local wastewater alternatives to connecting to a sewage treatment system. The town has a "sewer avoidance" policy.

The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has ordered Old Lyme Shores Beach Association and Old Colony Beach Club Association to connect to sewers by 2016. The two beach communities have done environmental studies that reveal pollution stemming from individual septic tanks. Point O'Woods Beach Association connected to a sewage system several years ago.

The proposed study would consider the "wastewater needs" of shoreline areas and would "evaluate local wastewater collection alternatives," First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder said at a community forum earlier this month.

If funding is approved, the town would work with the state and the engineering firm Woodard & Curran, which would conduct the study. The study includes analyzing wastewater management options, determining viability of a community wastewater system and testing the soil at potential sites.

Recommendations from the feasibility study would be subject to the regular town approval process, Reemsnyder said, including informational meetings.

State Sen. Andrea Stillman, D-Waterford, has introduced legislation, Senate Bill 352, which would allow water pollution control authorities to seek easements, if needed, to maintain wastewater treatment equipment located on private property.

Reemsnyder explained that the bill is intended to manage and maintain community systems with components on private property, not to have control over private, individual septic tanks.

Additional information from Town Hall presentations on the proposed study are available on the town website.


If you go

WHAT: Old Lyme town meeting

WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday

WHERE: Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School

WHY: Town votes on funding for a proposed wastewater management feasibility study and parking initiatives for Sound View Beach


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