Tri States Public Radio Staff
Thu March 8, 2012
Lee County Late Sewer Bills
Some residents of the Argyle Sanitation District will be receiving a bill for past due sewer services.
The county says 22 properties are behind in their payments to Regional Utility Service Systems (RUSS).
The Mount Pleasant-based organization owns and operates Argyle’s sanitary sewer system.
Lee County has been covering the late fees for months, which has prompted the Board of Supervisors to approve the mailing of bills to delinquent customers.
The supervisors have that authority because they are also serving as the trustees for the sewer district.
Board Chairperson Janet Fife-LaFrenz says this step is necessary if the county is going to get its money back because a lien could be placed on their properties for refusal to pay.
The property owners should receive their bills from the county this week.
The Lee County Treasurer’s Office says they will have 30 days (April 6) to pay their late fees before a penalty takes effect: 1.5% interest each month.
The delinquent property owners owed the county just over 12-thousand dollars as of December 31st. The largest bill for one property is more than $2,000.
A new round of bills will automatically be mailed out in April. They will be based on late fees accumulated January 1 – March 30.
Lee County wants to see if two of its other communities are interested in working with RUSS on their own sanitary sewer systems.
The Board of Supervisors plans to vote, next week, to hold public hearings in Mooar and Croton.
The communities had previously agreed to work with RUSS on the sewers, but the projects were halted because of personnel and financial issues facing the organization.
The goal of the meetings is to see if the communities want to restart the projects.
HAUL ROAD AGREEMENT
Lee County has a plan for protecting its roads from heavy machinery.
The Board of Supervisors has agreed to require companies to sign a contract with the county if county-owned roads are going to be used to haul equipment or material.
Chairperson Janet Fife-LaFrenz says this will insure that each company has enough insurance to cover any damage done to a county road from this point forward.
She says it will not address past situations.
The county decided to move forward with the contract after several residents came forward to point out that a county road was damaged as part of a levee project north of Fort Madison.
Lee County is applying for $35,000 from FEMA to help pay to update its hazard mitigation plan.
The county will cover the local match, which is expected to be just over $5,000.
Emergency Management Coordinator Steve Cirinna says the update will combine all of the current plans in place within Lee County.
There was a point where Lee County had nine plans among the county and its cities.