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Date: Fri 14-Aug-1998



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Date: Fri 14-Aug-1998

Publication: Bee

Author: ANDYG

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Taunton Press Sues To Avoid Two Sewer Connections


The Taunton Press, Inc, a local publisher, has filed a lawsuit challenging the

Water Pollution Control Authority's (WPCA) order that the company connect two

buildings it owns on Mile Hill Road to the municipal sewer system.

The WPCA has ordered more than 800 property owners in town to connect to the

sewer system which started operation almost a year ago.

On July 16, Taunton Press received a final notice to connect to the system

from the WPCA, according to the legal papers.

In the lawsuit filed July 30 in Danbury Superior Court, attorney Marjorie S.

Wilder, on behalf of Taunton Press, states the company's building at 10 Mile

Hill Road is a warehouse in which only 8 to 10 employees work. Installing a

sewer line to serve that building would involve blasting to create a

480-foot-long trench in rock beneath a driveway and parking area on the site,

according to the suit. Such a sewer line installation would pose significant

engineering problems and would be disruptive and costly, it adds.

Installing a sewer line would interfere with the presence of existing utility

lines and storm drains, it states.

According to the legal papers, Taunton Press's representatives have talked

with the town engineer and the town's consulting sewer engineers concerning an

easement across Taunton Press's property to extend a sewer line to South Main


The septic system serving 10 Mile Hill Road functions well and has been

properly maintained, the suit adds.

In the second count of the lawsuit, Taunton Press alleges that linking a sewer

line to 6 Mile Hill Road would pose a severe physical and economic hardship to

the publisher. That building houses only two to three employees, it states.

According to the suit, there is no manhole located on the town sewer line

adjacent to the property and installing such a manhole would be prohibitively


An alternative connection route on the property would be impractical due to

the presence of buried water lines, storm drains, and natural gas lines, it


The septic system serving the property functions well and has been properly

maintained, according to Taunton Press.

Through the lawsuit, Taunton Press seeks to have the court order the WPCA to

withdraw its orders to connect the two buildings to the sewer system; that

costs and interest be awarded to Taunton Press; and that other relief be


The town is scheduled to appear in court August 25 to answer the allegations

made in the lawsuit.

Since the sewer system started operation last September, the WPCA has

sequentially ordered property owners to connect to the system.

The WPCA's goal is to have all properties connected by Labor Day. The vast

majority of properties is already linked to the system.

Comments are open. Be civil.

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