Water woes divide haves and have-nots in Harrison

Time to petition and be heard on water and sewer issues in Harrison

Harrison residents just received a letter from our mayor, regarding the problems and financing of sewer and water systems, and the resulting increase in taxes and user fees.

I urge residents in the “have not” south end of the village to watch this process closely! Water mains were brought down Hot Springs Road and will no doubt be an advantage to developers, but there has been no indication water lines will be brought to existing residents any time soon.

Having observed extensive inspection of sewer lines in this area, I can’t help but wonder (a) if there is contamination of the aquifer from which I draw my own water supply (especially since there WAS a boil water advisory in the Village last year) and (b) was this costly inspection laying the groundwork for those improvements to our sewage system to further subsidize developers.

Our sewage systems/wastewater treatment facilities seem to have been adequate till now; if the newly developed properties necessitate an upgrade—shouldn’t the associated costs be born by the developer?

The letter also mentions capital costs of $1.2 million dollars to treat lake water for those fortunate enough to have access to it. This again begs the question: shouldn’t the need for huge capital expenditures be billed to developers who created the need?

And, will the increased taxes to pay these capital costs apply to ALL of Harrison, or only those who actually get to drink the water?

I urge all residents in the “have not” south end of the village to look around; notice the absence of village water, crumbling curbs, deteriorating streets and general lack of maintenance. Compare that to the north end of the village, where money is instantly available to build traffic circles, extra footbridges—and on and on.

When I moved to Harrison 22 years ago, it was a village with excellent services and maintenance and low taxes. Since then, it’s been all downhill in my neighbourhood.

Maintenance and services have deteriorated, while somehow money always seems to be available for whimsical fireworks displays, nice but not necessary footbridges, subsidizing festivals and general “beautification” of the north end of the village.

I’m reminded of those lunches with acquaintances. I ordered a hamburger and coffee, they had steak and a bottle of wine.W hen the bill came they divided it equally and left me to pay the bill. Something tells me the village’s capital expenditures and upgrades will turn out the same way!

Let’s make sure it doesn’t. Be heard at the April 19 meeting and/ or phone, write or picket the village offices.

L.A.Tilander