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      New sewage plant project raises taxes and concerns

      A C heboygan County community is looking to build a multi-million dollar sewage and water treatment plant and its got some people angry

      T uscarora Township in Indian River is moving forward with the project that will force taxpayers to front the bill for the next 40 years.

      I n years past , the idea of a sewage plant was met with bitter emotions. T here have been multiple failed attempts by the township to get something built since 1947.

      W hich resulted in large engineering bills with little to show for it.

      "I t was not a board decision to push this or do this to people ," Craig Waldron, Tuscarora Township trustee said. "P eople within the district asked us to do it ."

      Sixty-seven percent of the public signed off on the idea for the township to move forward with the project.

      T he new sewage plant and wastewater system is projected to cost more than $4 million. However, some recent bids indicate it might cost more around $6 million.

      "The bids are higher th a n what we can do with the money we have ," Waldron said. "S o we have request additional grant money at this time ."

      F or the average homeowner , this project will cost them around $200 extra a year for 40 years.

      B usinesses will have to pay more. Their average is around 1,400 dollars a year, some more and some less, depending on the size of the business. And both will likely have additional maintenance costs.

      "F or a small bar and restaurant to pay that assessment and then they have to pay the operation and maintenance cost on top of that," Janet Vance, who opposes the project said. "It will drive them out of business, they can't afford that."

      W hile there are many in town that believe this sewage plant is a bad idea , there are plenty of others who think it will preserve the natural waterways.

      "W e have to do something to keep our water systems clean, because we have the inland waterways," Dan Nivelt, Dan's Auto Repair Owner said.

      A nd some hope it will draw new businesses, to help grow the economy.

      " We're hopeful ," Waldron said. "W e have the budget issue we have to overcome , but other than that we are hopeful we can move forward ."

      T he township hopes to start construction on this new project this spring.