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Posted on May 26, 2016 at 10:39 PM by Charles Stump
Once a new subdivision is complete, the responsibility for the maintenance of its infrastructure (roads, sidewalks, parks, water, sewer, etc.) passes to the Town. For this reason, Town staff, including the Town engineer, ensures that all infrastructure development meets strict construction and inspection requirements prior to being turned over to the town.
The worst I&I problems in Poolesville arise in the older areas of town that were built mainly in the 1960s through 1970s. The construction materials and practices used at that time, coupled with the geology in Poolesville, lead to our worst I&I problems. While I&I issues can occur in some of the newer areas of town (I&I is a constant issue with any sewer system), their impact will be significantly lower due to the modern construction materials and construction practices.
Fees to town from new home developments pay for significant portions of the outstanding loans. Without a slow but steady supply of these fees from new development, the debt service payments will have to be shifted more and more to property taxes resulting in reduced services and amenities to residents and substantially higher property taxes.
These upgrades and replacements represent large capital expenditures that need to be paid for in the near future. The Fiscal Year 2017 Town of Poolesville budget has begun to fund these future needs without taking on more debt. However, the fees received from additional new development will be critical to fully funding these needs without additional significant tax increases or reductions in services to residents.
I have tried to write about facts as opposed to giving my own opinions on matters related to the future of Poolesville. For the latter, please contact me directly. I strongly encourage residents to ask questions and get involved with Town government. After all, this is our community and I know all of us want the best for Poolesville, today and into the future. The last thing we need is to perpetuate incorrect information and outdated facts.
Posted on August 20, 2015 at 11:16 AM by Wade Yost
Posted on October 17, 2014 at 11:04 AM by Charles Stump
Just a week ago it was perfect---a bright sunny morning with a light breeze blowing the grass that just seems to keep on growing stronger even though it’s October. Off in the distance I could hear children’s voices---our children’s voices---Poolesville’s children’s voices---having fun, enjoying the day, reminding me why happy kids can put a smile on even the most disagreeable person’s face. The voices got louder, then even louder, then finally there was enough noise to shake the dew off a solar panel. Poolesville Elementary School’s 5th grade classes had ARRIVED, and today was the day we were going to tour the solar array and our town’s waste-water treatment plant!
If you’re doing it right, one of the “percs” of serving the town is getting the chance to interact with just about everyone----especially the kids. Either this particular group was on its game that day or almost all Poolesville kids are bright, respectful, and inquisitive (I think the latter), regardless, we shared a tremendous two hours of questions, stories, and basically a crash course on how environmentally proactive this town is (and how much these kids---our future environmental stewards---actually do “get it”).
The solar panels were easy to talk about, and I have to admit I was surprised how many of our “yutes” had not gotten up close and personal with a solar panel. That needs to change. They easily made the connection between the solar panels, what it took to get them in place (both in labor and in cost), and our other environmental and energy saving initiatives (like LED streetlights, more efficient operations, etc). It was also an easy transition from harvesting solar energy to demonstrating how we use it to operate our town facilities.
Once the gaggle of students landed at the top of the basins in our modern wastewater treatment plant (WWTP), the “stuff” started to run downhill, both literally and figuratively. I figured there would be plenty of “poop” jokes to be had (and I wasn’t disappointed), but our Poolesville prodigies were quickly ready to dig deep into the process of how our two plant operators (and resident microbe specialists), Matt Haga and Paul Lucia, introduced and regulated the “bugs” that do the heavy lifting as the town turns wastewater into regular water. The students also now most likely have a permanent aversion to “cake” (ask your 5th grader). Our plant is truly a marvel, and my hat is off to Matt, Paul, and Town Manager Wade Yost for making it look seamless.
My stint with the 5th graders ended way too early as we high-fived (and scrubbed with hand disinfectant) away from the solar array and WWTP. While the town has done an admirable and increasingly progressive job of becoming more energy efficient (and thus “green”), I have to say I’m even more impressed with how Poolesville kids really seem to care about how we’re taking care of business (including their “business”). The future of Poolesville seems to be in very good hands. Thanks to our town staff as well as our wonderful PES 5th grade teachers for organizing a spectacular experience for all.
Commissioner of Poolesville