The timing of future phases of the project will be determined by when Jefferson County is able to reasonably acquire state and/or federal grant funds so as not to overly burden potential sewer system users and tax payers. Jefferson County is actively working to secure these funds. With these funds, the County will need to create a Local Improvement District (LID) to further finance the project and demonstrate local commitment to the project. This will provide the impetus to complete the design for the collection system (sewer lines and local pump stations). The Sewer Advisory Group will also be reconvened to make recommendations regarding various sewer ordinances. The County and sewer stakeholders also need to make a final determination about who will maintain and operate the sewer; options include the Jefferson County Public Utilities District (PUD), Jefferson County Public Works, or other entities. Once the County finalizes all the permits and regulations, it can begin construction work.
As approved in the 2008 Sewer Facility Plan, the project is phased to begin in the Port Hadlock commercial area and expand to the Irondale area over a 20-year period, ultimately serving approximately 1,290 acres. The initial phase would serve approximately 500 acres of commercially zoned areas along SR-116 and SR-19 Rhody Drive. The first phase will likely involve the construction of the wastewater treatment facility, infiltration areas, the main pipeline and pump station, and a portion of the collection system. The design of the first phase will be reviewed and refined during the collection system design phase.
The subsequent phases will serve approximately 790 acres of residential area. These later phases will involve expansions to the treatment facility and the collection system.
The timing of all of the phases of the sewer project is dependent on a variety of factors. A significant infusion of state and federal grant funding will need to be acquired so that the project does not overly burden the users (rate payers). As with all sewers, the users of the system must fund any portion of the construction not covered by grants. Sewer users are typically charged through a combination of sewer connection fees and assessments from Local Improvement Districts (LIDs or ULIDs). In addition, the sewer customers pay for the ongoing operations and maintenance (O&M) of the system through monthly sewer bills. As a result, the timing of the project will also depend upon the willingness of the affected property owners to support formation of a Local Improvement District and pay the associated costs of connecting to a public sewer and decommissioning existing septic system.