County Commissioners Vote to “Dump the Pumps”!

A letter from our N3 Committee Chairman:

At the regular Sarasota County Commission meeting of Dec. 11, the commissioners unanimously voted to direct the county staff to begin designing a “hybrid gravity sewer system” for our N-3 Area.

This vote means that the grinder pump proposal is dead. You may now feel free to take down your “Dump the Pumps” sign (if you still have one).

Wednesday’s vote was the culmination of more than a year of work by your neighborhood committee to get the county to reconsider its original plan to install grinder pumps at each of our homes. In the end, we are getting a system that is not only superior to the grinder pumps, but may well be better even than the vacuum system that originally seemed like the preferable alternative.

By going back to the drawing board, the county utilities staff and consulting engineers determined that the “hybrid gravity system” would answer many of our complaints about the grinder pumps and be cost-effective in our neighborhood. As we have outlined previously, under this proposal there will be 6 to 10 mini lift stations in manholes in the public right-of-way throughout the neighborhood.

The adoption of this proposal was a case study in citizen involvement and government responsiveness. The committee diligently gathered information and mobilized the neighborhood; the commissioners welcomed us and listened to our concerns; and finally the county staff went the extra mile to come up with a much improved plan.

The committee wishes to thank the county commissioners and the utilities staff for heeding our objections and taking the time to develop an alternative proposal. And you, our neighbors, deserve thanks for following this issue, placing signs in your yards, attending the public meetings at the community center, and most importantly, attending the County Commission meeting in February carrying signs.

The county utilities staff deserves particular praise for subjecting themselves to repeated grillings by the N-3 Committee, never losing their cool, and then coming up with an innovative plan that exceeded our expectations. We are fortunate in Sarasota County to have such dedicated and professional civil servants. We look forward to working with them through the planning and construction phases.

Stay tuned for more information. As the project proceeds, you will continue to receive email from the committee and from the Sarasota N3 Sewers website.

Best regards,

Peter Gentile, Chairman

N3 Neighborhood Committee

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One Response to “County Commissioners Vote to “Dump the Pumps”!”

  1. Den Settles Says:

    James,

    Since you may have some interest in this, I’m sending it on after learning that some Sarasota residents were successful in keeping grinder pumps off of their property…and with good reason. See the post on N3 sewers below. Unfortunately, unlike Sarasota, down here we’re dealing with a closed-minded board of county commissioners and inexperienced FKAA engineers who were conned by a grinder pump salesman with a “decision tree” to sell them on this crap. Now that it’s almost too late to turn it around and put us all on gravity or a vacuum system (which Marathon has), experienced plumbers and wastewater people are telling us that this low pressure system (gravity pumps) will fail in 5 years or less due to salt water intrusion and breaks in the small diameter low pressure lines downstream. One plumbing contractor said he would never have one on his own property! Good stuff, huh? So, as part of the 25% of people potentially getting screwed with these things, a large group of Keys residents retained a lawyer to stop this prone-to-failure system from being shoved down our front yards throats. The word is out that the 1100 or so homes now scheduled for low pressure wastewater hookups will depreciate considerably and be harder to sell with grinder pumps in the front yard. And the FKAA knows they don’t have nearly enough trucks or generators to keep up with the things during storms and power outages! Wish us luck. More and more people are getting in what’s being called “the grinder-pump war” every day.

    Hey, thanks again for putting us up so Rene could get all those tests. Take care, God bess you guys, and have a blessed and merry Christmas wherever you are on the 25th.

    Den

    Sent from my iPad

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