The Hazard City Commission adopted a new policy Monday night at their regular monthly meeting that affects those people who wish to build their homes above the city's water tanks.
The policy adopted by the commission puts the responsibility of purchasing and maintaining the water pumps and meters on those people that wish to build their homes above the tanks. "It's clear that if you build above a water tank you can't get water without a pump. The city can not maintain every pump, we already have a system to maintain and we can not maintain forty or fifty other pumps," remarked City Attorney Paul Collins.
The policy for extension of water and sewer service to unserved areas makes clear that if anyone wants to build in an area of higher elevation and receive service from the city's water service, certain reasonable accommodations must be made from the private owner.
"Because of the severe topographic relief in the Hazard and Perry County area, there are, and will be, areas which can not be served reasonably by water and sewer utility services given system design limitations." If these people build atop a hill above the water tanks, the city's system lacks the pressure to pump water to that residence, and without an independent pumping system, the home will be without water service from the city.
According to the policy, four conditions must be met before the installation and use of such devices that will allow for water and sewer service to homes of higher elevation. First, the City Manager and City Engineer approve of the device, which may also rely on, at no cost to the city, additional technical expertise provided by the customer from qualified personnel. Second, if permission is given from the City Manager, whenever possible the device will be located behind the city's meter on a portion of the line maintained by the private customer. If the device is located in front of the city's meter, that device will still be the sole responsibility of the customer and not of the city. Third, the customer will pay all costs of the device (including maintenance, installation, and operation) unless otherwise stated in writing. In addition, the customer may be eligible for a proportional refund of certain expenses. Finally, the policy holds that all members of the residence and succeeding heirs or future occupants are bound to this policy of maintaining a private device for the city's water service.
Collins noted that the extensions on water being constructed at present in Perry County are not being paid for by the city's budget. "We want to make clear that extended lines are extended through grants. The city and county are not putting dollars into the system extension," he said. He also noted that the city does not have the resources to maintain separate systems and that the system currently in place has a finite capability when servicing certain areas.