Finished going through Annex A, the document which lists the 789 addresses eligible for connection to Hudson’s sewer system and sewage treatment plant. Annex A forms an integral part of long-term loan Bylaw 505. This one bylaw accounts for $14.8 million of the town’s $24 million long-term debt.
Taken together, Bylaw 505 and Quebec’s Act Respecting Municipal Taxation make it clear every address fronting on a sewer line, connected or not, must pay the interest, principal and charges on the sewer/sewage treatment plant loan according to the rates set for residential and non-residential usage.
Act respecting municipal taxation, Section 244.3:
The mode of tariffing must be related to the benefits derived by the debtor.
Benefits are derived not only when the debtor or his dependent actually uses the property or service, or benefits from the activity but also when the property or service is at his disposal or the activity is an activity from which he may benefit in the future. The rule, adapted as required, also applies in the case of a property, service or activity from which benefit may be derived not directly by the person but which may be derived in respect of the immovable of which he is the owner or occupant.
The extended meaning given to the expression “benefits derived” in the second paragraph does not apply if the mode of tariffing is a fixed amount exigible in a punctual manner for the use of a property or a service or in respect of the benefit derived from an activity. The activity of a municipality that consists in examining an application and responding to it is deemed to benefit the applicant, regardless of the response given, including cases where the subject of the application is a regulatory act or the response consists in such an act.
An accompanying letter from Hudson’s greffier Cassandra Comin Bergonzi notes that a special meeting will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 6 at the Community Centre where a revised 2017 budget will be presented. Finance committee head Rob Goldenberg said at the January council meeting the revision will include the taxation of properties located on the sewer system but not connected. In my discussions with a Municipal Affairs ministry lawyer and Hudson Director-General Jean-Pierre Roy, I was given to understand the municipality must tariff all properties physically capable of connecting to the sewer system even if they have not connected. The following lists all connectable properties. Annex A does NOT denote which properties have yet to connect.
Annex A: dai207-01-1-annexes-a
Note: This version has been updated with the addition of specific references.
34 thoughts on “Annex A”
JIm, to be clear I’m sure you mean that every address that could connect (ie pipe in front of lot) to sewer will have to pay, connected or not.
Don’t want the unconnected to start heating the tar.
Good catch. Distracted by the inauguration. Feeling nauseous
Jim’s in the crosshairs anyways!
Yes. the law is that is you can connect, you are deemed to benefit from the service. If you do not want to use the service, it is your choice, but the service is provided. So yes, if you can connect and choose not to, you pay the tax.
I have a question on your correction that “Bylaw 505 and Quebec municipal law makes it clear every address fronting on a sewer line, connected or not, must pay the interest, principal and charges on the sewer/sewage treatment plant loan according to the rates set for residential and non-residential usage.
Your reference to “fronting on a sewer line” puzzled me and I searched for it in vain in
bylaw 505 (as amended by bylaw 654), Quebec municipal law or my law books on municipal taxation.
Bylaw 505 refers to “taxable property located inside the taxation area described in Schedule A (in clear, any taxable property within the sewage network).
I see no reference to “fronting a sewer line” in the Towns and Cities Act, the Municipal Tax Act and my law books on municipal taxation.
True, a bylaw may refer to frontage…but this is not the case here
Could you please point me in the right direction and explain where this information comes from?
I am very puzzled.
Bylaw 654-2014, amending bylaw 505
To cover the expenses incurred for interest and repayment of capital of annual payments of the loan, it is required by this by-law and it shall be charged, annually during the term of the loan, to each owner of taxable property (roll number) located inside the taxation area described in schedule A attached to the present by-law and which forms an integral part thereof, a compensation for each taxable property (roll
number) owned which is subject to this compensation.
The amount of this compensation will be established annually by dividing the expenses incurred for interest and capital repayment of annual payments of the loan by the number of taxable properties (roll numbers) whose owners are liable for the payment of this compensation.
Maitre Fischer, I’m a journalist, not a lawyer. If you require further information for legal purposes I suggest you look elsewhere.
If you have a poop pipe that can connect to a bigger Town poop pipe running by your house out at the street you have to pay even if your poop pipe stays aloof from the Town poop pipe. It’s all good , Jim I got you covered on the legalese. Took a law course at McGill once.
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Not sure what the exact legalese is or how it was written, the intent was that all streets within the boundary drawn have sewage lines installed along the street and a connection stub to each residential and commercial property in that zone.
So any property in that area can be connected to the sewer, and will pay debt and sewer operating charges whether they are connected or not. Those properties I believe are on Annex A that Jim finally extracted from the town.
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Only those who could hook up to the sewer system whether they choose to or not are to be charged for the annual operating costs.
Under the orignal bylaw – 30% of the residents = those who could hook up would be charged 70& of the capital & interest on the loan bylaw and 70% – those who could not be hooked up – would share in 30% of the capital cost and interest.
This council changed the bylaw – now those same 30% will be charged 100% of the capital cost and interest – these people are shouldered with the added cost for the schools and town buildings’ portion.
It has been suggested the town should have hired one contractor to hook up everyone on the line. this never would have worked as rhese same people could have voted the bylaw down and imagine the nightmare of trying to determine who would owe what……
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Pretty clear to me, wonder why our DG who is a lawyer and must be familiar with Municipal Taxation Act didn’t act on this before presenting the budget. Serge Raymond would have known also,. Who made the decision not to follow regulations? When our council was in office 2010 was the first year tax bills went out for those loan by-laws. even though that project dated from 2006. Trail, and Camille Belanger did some research on how other towns invoice these tariffs and made recommendations. The DG at the time did it her way. I think the intent was that taxpayers would be given a deadline to hook up, they would be charged for the loan-bylaw but not on the operations part of the cost if they were not connected, until they did connect. Obviously, no incentive to connect. The town should have gone to a contractor and gotten a good deal for the whole town. This is what Rigaud did if I’m not mistaken. Anyway, it was on the back burner for a couple of years and then 2013 was a complete write off due to UPAC investigations. As far as the businesses and how they were taxed, that was a disaster from the get go. as I’m sure Jim will confirm. One restaurant went out of business because he had a terrace and the town was charging by the seats so his taxes increased by a huge amount. No one had an easy solution but if the DG had referred to the municipal taxation act it would have been a lot more simple. Actually, if she had abided by the Cities & Towns Act, not only on her whim, we would not have had the problems we encountered later. So, we are back to square one, taxing everybody who can connect. Like I mentioned before, why was this not done when the budget was presented in Dec. Could it be council is reading what citizens are writing, some of them lawyers, other who do their research, and decided it’s time to do the right thing? If that’s the case, I would consider it a small victory so let’s keep making suggestions.
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The way I see it, the sliders who could connect but didn’t saved themselves enough money in taxes to pay for connection. But people don’t think that way, so I suspect the municipality will have to float a loan bylaw to group-connect everyone not connected, then tax it back to the owners of those properties.
The only legal issue is whether to tax back the taxes lost because of the town failed to follow the law. I can see a bunch of tax evaders hiring a lawyer to fight the town on that, so better to forget it.
Just Fix It, the faster the better. Once everyone is connected, the town can get on with the task of fixing busted sidewalks and buggered roads and replacing failing water system components without having to dig up a repaving job.
Each case in an old village is different. Cost can vary, complexity can vary, a finished basement complicates and adds expense.
Frankly, the town did a great job. They hired engineering student(s?) who met with us to discuss proper positioning of the connection to minimize damage and make the simplest connection. They listened to me and saved a tree. We still had to cut through a 1929 Cedar hedge and I wanted my own choice of contractor. I had two quotes going for a couple of years, finally one got hungry enough and had time, so he got the work. It’ll take a while to heal the landscaping, and we had a simple connect which cost $4,500 plus taxes. With interior plumbing and landscaping figure close to $10K. But that’s one time expense and way less than a new septic system.
I’m a huge fan of villages with sidewalks and no driveways on the public street, but laneways between two rows of housing. Makes the water, power and sewer easier to connect and service.
Forcing people to connect would have probably attracted enough signatures and might have killed the project, The compromise was to pay debt and operating connected or not and it was a good one. I wished some of the local banks had offered home equity lines of credit as good rates to get more connected faster.
It’s hard to tell someone that they need to spend to connect only a few years after they responsibly spent big bucks to install a new septic system. It would be reasonable, but probably not possible legally to force connections on septic systems older than 20 years, those are paid off and nearing or at end of life. Connecting will be cheaper. Pushing lifespan on a septic system risks environmental damage, so 20 years would probably be a good line, the exact age of my still perfectly functioning system when I connected.
Most of all, we should be expanding annually and connecting more doors. Especially where gravity is on our side and before we repave streets that could be sewered in the village. Walk the village on a warm summer day and you’ll smell the reasons in certain areas.
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Exactly Peter. I think when the open-ended hookup timeline was put in place it was in the interests of fairness to people who had previous to and recently spent for a private septic system in the new and just finished public sewered areas. For the most part townspeople of Hudson are dragged kicking and screaming into these types of infrastructure projects. So the Town said : Look we’re going to build it and start with the areas where none of these bio-nest, ecoflow, or weepered systems work and where quite possibly your new system will never work properly so eventually (5,10,15 years) you’ll need a new one and the alternative is the much cheaper hookup to the Town system and ………….you’ll be doing the environment a favor. Forcing and threatening are nowhere. Just let time take care of it. When and if some fool with a property that’s town sewered comes for a permit to redo a private system , simple , deny the permit. All these unconnected systems, after all, are being tariffed on the sewer debt just not on operational costs. Just let it be at this point might be fairer than just fix it. But if we do expand it needs to be clear that everyone in the new area is on board with connecting right away.
Brian, I know Hudson has to bend a little, but when does the bending stop? The guy living behind us in the village has no intention of connecting and no money even if he did. He tells me most of his neighbours feel the same way. Guess there’s not much point in repairing the sidewalks on McNaughten until he and his neighbours connect. Multiply that by 250 and you’ve got yourself a problem.
So now we’ve got two candidates for Hudson’s official coat of arms – Ratcliffe’s Just Fix It and the current favourite, Bend and Spend.
Is it really still 250? That would be 33% and you’re right , too many. And you’re also right I’m guessing there might be some who don’t have the 4K to 12 K to hook up. I’m also guessing that some are in areas that might still have cesspools or long plugged weeper fields. I don’t think the Town should move in to fix them and back tax those 250. Might have us borrowing $2 million to add to our debt. We can charge them the operation costs even if unhooked which is legal and that may bring in an extra $50K (250 x $200). I guess that’s right as they’ve avoided it for 8 years . Can we agree not to back tax them for those 8 years due to administrational confusion and as Peter says avoid having to call Dunton Rainville.
Anything that doesn’t involve lawyers and ends with everyone eligible to connect connected for a 10th anniversary celebration. I think the Brick Shithouse came on stream in late 2007 but I’ll check. We have time.
I’m loving that the Hudson’s Brick Shithouse name is sticking. So many towns have corrugated steel or cinder block, we could host wedding pictures at ours if you avoid wide angles. BTW I edited your post because you mistakenly said late 2017 and I’m sure you meant 2007.
There needs to be some form of leverage if someone has a smelly septic system it’s dumping crap into the environment. Not healthy. Gotta find an acceptable way to Just Fix it, including perhaps a forced connection paid by the town and billed over 5 years on taxes if the owner doesn’t connect 90 days after a problem. Can’t wait for them all to sell.
A bad lawyer is someone who will spend all your money to prove they’re right. Lawyers need to be managed and consulted wisely. The only thing more expensive than owning a boat is talking to lawyers and asking questions you don’t need to ask.
Hudson’s sewage treatment facility is built like a brick shithouse……….does have a certain je ne sais quoi. It would be nice to get it landscaped . Mike Elliot asked me to do a little site plan/sketch back in 2012 but funds weren’t there for the work.
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Picking up on the comment about McNaughten residents, the issue is just that, the people with the seemingly lower income have to deal with big problem when it comes to getting financing. This part of the overall plan was really not well understood. I always thought that if the problem was with all these village houses then why not look at helping to replace the septic systems and avoid building the plant in the first place. I know this would not have worked well either, but the cost would have been much less to do that, then what we face today. At least there should have been a survey done of every home to know what the issue was that needed to be done to fix the problem. I know that many small lots just cannot replace what they have since you need more land. The law will not permit a outside the box solution, it must conform.
In my case, I renovated my home in 2004, and replaced my system, it needed to be done. Not really that costly, about $4500. (tank and weeping field design) The landscape is another issue, but the lot was a mess already from the extension. In 2011, we did connect to the sewer since I wanted to build a garage and finish up all the projects on the lot. It cost us very little, about $2500. (quote was $1900) I was also under the impression that I was paying for the sewer whether I connected or not, so I wanted to get her done! I feel I got off easy compared to what I have heard for other hook up costs.
None the less, the folks that say they cannot afford to do the connection, perhaps they need some help to get a plan together. Talking with a contractor is not everyone’s force, getting bids, understanding what has to be done, getting to the bank. They need help. Maybe that is where the Town or a volunteer group can help people.
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When you go for a quote on connecting sewers, there is a pretty simple process the diggers use to figure out what to charge. It’s not rocket science.
Basically, calculate how many cubits of earth need to be moved twice, how many cubits of gravel and sand need to be moved, pumping costs to empty tank and how many feet of pipe and and pipe fittings are required.
So an installation can be broken down to simple math and all the major variances are usually from overestimating amount of work to extract more money from a potentialc client.
With 250 homes left to connect, the Town should consider a “Group Buy Quote” for by the cubit and by the foot rates from multiple contractors and select the lowest bidder as the automatic supplier. 250 homes in a small area represents at least $500K of business for some smart local contractor who becomes the preferred supplier. I’d be tempted to lease a mini-excavator and start a business on that kind of deal, if I had the proper skills and credentials.
Don’t publish the rates, just recommend an approved supplier and let the others be competitive.
Residents who want to get other quotes can use another contractor, or simply accept the charges and invite the prime approved contractor to set a date to agree to connect at a fixed date within a year’s time, but the date to be connected must be set within 90 days. After 90 days, if no date with an alternative contractor is set, then our chosen contractor is binding upon you and schedules you and shows up and digs.
Paying would be a couple of options:
1) Town sponsored debt (higher interest) billed over 5-10 years on tax bill and the town pays the contractor.
2) Payment from homeowner
3) Perhaps local banks will offer reasonable loans at preferential rates.
But above all else: JUST FIX IT
Anyone who has ever owned a backhoe or excavator (me) will tell you all bets are off as soon as the shovel hits the ground. Point at where the 4″ ABS exits the house foundation , usually , 18″-24″ down from the top of the foundation dropping to the mainline sewer at the street. It can be as little as 20 ft. or as much as 100 ft.(had a client). Might need an outside sump and pump if the levels aren’t right and the distance to great. Gotta have the slope. Usually want 1% minimum in a 4″ PVC pipe. 2% is better. Now in that trench could be giant boulders (saw those when the street sewers were put in place) or rocky gravel( have to be careful to backfill with sand on the pipe so that fill put back in doesn’t break the pipe). Might hit a sump pump pipe , invisible dog fence wire? , maybe an electric line to a lamp post, very likely some underground irrigation, or hopefully not the waterline to the house.
Inside the house can be a nightmare. Need to bring that ABS with its clean out from its exit point at the rear of the house to the front. Inside , maybe, a finished basement , so a nice big black pipe that has to drop down an avg. of , probably 8″ across the width of the house so add that to the already 18″ down from the bsmt. ceiling and you have a pipe between 24″ and 30″ hanging from your basement”s gyproc ceiling in front of your big screen TV in the new subterranean family room. Oh forgot the required anti- backflow valve. Can hang a picture on that.
Well, just take it from around back to the front outside the foundation. A lot of the same hidden treasures to be dug up there to. Now you are probably 24 ” lower down by the time you get to the front and on your way to trenching to the street . Maybe too low and you’re back to the sump and pump outside ( extra $2500).
Tom , you indicated you were lucky with your hookup but it is not always so. Hookups can range from $2500 to $16000. No one size fits all and as I have pointed out , tricky to predict. I can here the change orders ca-chinging up . Could be a bottomless money pit for the Town should it specify a contractor and start doing the work . No contractor will agree to a price that doesn’t allow for the unforeseen unpredictables. Why would Tom , with his const. fore knowledge agree to pick up the tab on a bunch of costly hookups when he had lucky circumstances on his own site. Can’t see it , Peter but as always we have to explore ,so good.
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OK Brian, but without some incentive and help or legal hardball it’ll never happen.
And problems would average out over 250 jobs.
How do you lower risk? And make sure people pay for what they get and what they demand?
Bill excavator time by the hour, shovel workers by the hour, materials by the cubit, and parts by the piece. The there’s less risk and the prices per unit should be lower. The homeowner eats the exact cost of their connection but the group buy reduces it.
A contractor who can spend a week on one village block by scheduling can save a pile of money versus one at a time.
I knocked a chunk off mine by naming my price and waiting for them to be hungry enough. Call me when you’ll do it for $ x,xxx.00. And I had a simple plumbing revision and unfinished basement.
Failing that, we empower a team of passionate environmentalists to knock on doors on weekends (in pairs) as the Sewage Warriors carrying environmental textbooks to wear them down. Or institute mandatory soil testing to confirm absence of fecal matter, if such a test exists.
Let’s sell the reasons and find the methods to Just Fix It.
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All i was saying , Peter was that the Town should stay out of contracting work on private property. 500 houses have been hooked up under contractor/homeowner negotiations. You said yourself you haggled it down and Tom got his for $2500. You saying the averaging out will keep you and Tom happy if you weren’t hooked up already? You wouldn’t mind paying the extra $2000 for the averaging out? So far the private way has worked fine. As for the rest have the inspections done and if they’re up to snuff leave it be otherwise fine them. They’re already paying debt and sewer operating costs. This problem will work its way through by attrition. If the Town were to cobble a $2 million loan bylaw for this nonsense I would be the first one to register against this use of my tax $. $750K for Pine Lake broke back dam repairs makes more sense than this one.
Agree with some of that , Peter. I’m just not fussy about the Town interjecting itself onto private property. I do agree that people w/o hookup but have it available to them should start paying operation costs. I also agree that they should also have to pay for inspections as to whether their private system is polluting if they want to keep it. But having the Town forcing its way onto unwilling properties and backtaxing for the work I can’t go with. This should be as simple as a homeowner loan from the bank with the house as collateral. We have enough to Just Fix on Town owned properties .
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Brian, there needs to be some sort of formal process. In Germany, homeowners are given 90 days to connect to the municipal sewer system. The only out is to prove you can’t afford it by producing tax returns and other documentation. The lack of a connection is noted on the property listing and becomes a lien enforceable when the owner goes to sell. In the interim the owner is taxed as if the property is connected and must continue to have their septic tank pumped and inspected as scheduled. If their system fails they have no choice but to connect.
Both Goldenberg and technical services told me roughly a third of the 750 doors on the sewer system remain unconnected, so I haven’t a clue where Mayor Ed got the ’50-100′ he’s quoted as telling the Gazoo,
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I like a lot of the ideas here incl. some of my own which is rare enough. I think , Jim, what Germany does is quite close to what we all have proposed. The non-hookers have to pay for operational costs which satisfies the money end as far as the town’s concerned but not the environmental costs which required inspections should. The lien would be interesting in that the hookup costs would be extracted upon the sale of the property. Then does the Town have a contractor move in to do the work? with these funds? There’s some legal stuff here I suspect and I’m a little gun shy on that . Maybe need some German jack boots for this.
Given today’s developments in Trumpistan, I don’t think we need to import European jackboots. Delayed inspection-based hookups are the rule in other Quebec municipalities.
When SRS came to inspect our Ecoflo, they warned us these systems have a finite lifespan and they’re no longer approved. I’d be more than happy to see our neighbourhood sewered instead of having to eat the cost of a new installation.
Rigaud hired one firm to inspect every septic system in the municipality and make recommendations on the best way to proceed. People howled but council opted for a series of loan bylaw resolutions that forced everyone to connect and the cost taxed back. I understand there have been some alterations to that, but I’m sure Mayor Gruenwald would be more than happy to share Rigaud’s experience and offer free advice if asked nicely.
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You bring a good point on inspection. Do deficiencies get reported to Hudson, or just the homeowner?
Rigaud’s system is a good one, but there’s not a solid way to determine efficiency and function of a system. Usually it’s obvious when the field stops working and you can’t do more than x loads of laundry in a day, but flow rates are not really measured at pumping. So it’s guesswork and black water art.
Your neighborhood would probably be best connected thru R15? If we could get that one going or rezoned to a marketable buildable purpose the pipe is on Oakland.
Or perhaps we really should extend up Oakland with a pipe and possibly pumping big enough to catch that whole top of Oakland, Dwyer etc. pretty wet sector and catch your section.
Ongoing and annual budget for sewer network expansion with a fixed five year plan.
My Gravity plan: Start by walking uphill from Lakeview and connect from the high point of each street down to Lakeview. That’ll probably catch close to a hundred home I bet and a bunch of old septic systems.
We need to be clearly planned where we can sewer and when it will be done so people don’t replace a failing septic system and then have a brand new one when the sewer comes by.
Start thinking ahead and Just Fix Something every year. I’d challenge the next administration to prepare an inventory deficit on entry and post one on exit. Did they fix more than broke while in office?
Remember how many years Hudson didn’t seem to want sewers? We did everything we could to stall, until it was long past environmentally irresponsible.
I remember seeing an Eco-Flow installation and thinking how long could some peat moss really do the job of cleaning up the flow from a 4 bedroom home. We may find out Bionest is not far behind . These systems were bought legislation by lobbyists for these systems . How were 2 bales of peat or some bags of styrofoam pellets going to replace the job of a 20×40 ft. weeper field with 2 ft. of 3/4′ clear gravel even if it was in clay? At least bionest has UV.
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Wow…..I think I stirred the pot with my comment. Not sure who Tom is….Brian?
I never said that the Town should take on the money burden.
Peter, it is not rocket science, but people do not know how to pick up the phone and call the contractor. You are a doer, and you know how to make it happen. Most folks do not, and they are the ones that need the help. Procrastinate or afraid or just do not care
Perhaps, the same people cannot manage their money well, and will never have the capital to do the connection.
Inspections: Yes the Town needs to know the condition of all the septic systems. A report must be filed. Since the law says they also need to be cleaned every 2 years. (overkill for single people) at least that paperwork should be mailed in, scanned in.
Going forward: A plan for connecting as many concentrated neighborhoods has to be done.
Oh, by the way, what was the design of the treatment plant able to handle……the remainder of Hudson, or the remainder of some other number of potential connections….??
Have a good day all
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Jim, Tim whatever McDermott, I’m a fan because you chose to run. Hope you’re feeling well and recovering.
I doubt we can connect all of Hudson, but that would be a nice problem to eventually have, but we still should have room to connect a lot more.
When the Brick Shithouse was being designed and built one of the details that was hard to pin down was the ultimate capacity. If I recall correctly, we were told we had at least 20% over estimated capacity which would imply another 150-200 doors would be possible without expansion. And I recall that the system is designed in a modular way and can be expanded.
The Consulting Engineers sneered at specific questions on details, but the placating answer was that they had to design in over capacity and expand-ability or we wouldn’t get a grant. That was as specific as anything I heard in the public discussions.
We have some operating experience and a technician on staff, we know how many doors are connected and we should be able to extrapolate ultimate capacity from current maximum loading.
George Ellerbeck’s proposed development of 90-100 homes was always designed to connect to our sewage via the high pressure line from Como and no one ever questioned capacity.
I wonder if we could get the Hudson Micro Brewery to brew something called Hudson Brick Shithouse.
Brian, you’re touching on an issue I suspect will be exploding in courtrooms all over. These systems made wet lots developable. They were approved on what amounts to a theory and marketed aggressively worldwide. No point into getting into specifics and personalities (no point in giving lawyers more work) but we could be seeing a poopstorm of epic proportions if these systems are decertified. What can municipalities do then? Sewerage is the only option, whatever the cost.
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My mistake Jim. I was referring to you but my senior’s moment made me write Tom McDermott , also a Hudson resident.
Apologies to all. Usually I edit out mistakes but WordPress automatically approves posts from regulars.