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Elizabethtown sewer referendum nears

Nearly all of the remaining $1.8 million will be funded through a 30-year no-interest loan through the state-run Environmental Facilities Corporations.

Merrihew said the extensive grant funds will ensure that, if the project is approved by voters, it could move forward at the target cost to taxpayers: $362 annually per single-family home or equivalent dwelling unit. Commercial and institutional users would pay a higher rate.

"To me, if the referendum is in the positive, we're ready to move forward," said Merrihew. "If it is decided that it is not the time or the project isn't right for the town, we will pick up our pieces and go onto another project."

Merrihew said the project addresses environmental concerns while opening up the hamlet for future economic development. He noted how many properties in the business district would require municipal sewer to invest in desired growth.

"You have two choices in the Adirondacks," said Merrihew. "You can plan and invest in the future growth of your town, or you can settle for a slow but sure demise."

Another major concern, said Merrihew, is the future of the county-owned Horace Nye Home. If the facility relocates, a resolution at the county level stipulates that it must be to a municipality that has a public wastewater treatment system in place.

"That's probably the more sobering reality," said Merrihew. "It's job retention."

Voting will take place Monday, Jan. 25 from 4-8 p.m. at the Elizabethtown Town Hall. Voters in the referendum must own property within the proposed district. Each property owner is granted one vote regardless of whether they own multiple properties within the district. Each owner of a jointly-owned property may vote in the referendum. For more information on voter qualification, call the Elizabethtown Town Hall at 873-6555.

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