This city's proposed $2.8 million sewer system has apparently died a second death.
When four members of the City Council voted Feb. 8 to kill the project, it was considered dead.Opponents said the system was unneeded, that present disposal methods were adequate, the city could not afford further debt in the wake of major culinary water improvements and that many low-income residents could not afford the hook-up charge and the fee of $23 per residence.The council's 4-1 negative vote followed an opinion poll that showed 150 residents in favor of the project and 140 opposed.
Proponents of the project, however, didn't give up. Saying opponents had circulated literature that at best was misleading, they circulated a petition asking that the council reconsider its stand and hold a special revenue bond election March 27 that would affirm support for the system.
The March 27 date was chosen because a substantial share of the financing package that had been developed to help fund the project would not be available after April 1.
By the same 4-1 vote, however, the council has now voted to put off the sewer project issue until some time after March 27. Some signers of the petition say that action in effect deals the proposed system its second death.
The petition was signed by 179 residents during the five days it was circulated. Mayor Gerald Hansen, who favored the project, said the petition required the signatures of only 15 percent, or 81 registered voters, to make it an official and binding document.
The petition calling for a vote on the sewer may still appear on the ballot at the primary in September, giving the issue a third chance at life.