CROWN POINT | A move to connect homes in the unincorporated subdivisions Hermits Lake and Willowdale Manor to the city sewer system is gaining ground.
Plans being discussed would alleviate long-standing wastewater treatment issues in the two neighborhoods, city officials said.
"It's about solving problems, and these are two problems that need to be resolved," said Michael Conquest, a member of the Crown Point Board of Public Works and Safety.
The board on Monday approved memorandum of agreements with Lake County, which still need to be approved by county commissioners and affirmed by the Crown Point City Council. They're also subject to the county's ability to obtain necessary funding.
The Hermits Lake subdivision of about 280 homes just outside the city's southern limit would be connected to the sewer system via a pump installed at county expense near 121st and White Oak avenues.
An existing treatment plant serving Hermits Lake subdivision would be closed, officials said.
The county would become a wholesale customer of the city, paying a monthly bill for sewage treatment service to the subdivision at the going rate plus 25 percent for an out-of-city customer, according to the agreement.
The county also would be responsible for paying the city a tap-in fee of $1,920 for each home being serviced by the county.
The city would not annex the subdivision.
The agreement for Willowdale Manor, just outside the city limit at Summit Street, calls for the county to build a sewer line needed to service homes with failing septic systems. About eight or nine homes are affected, officials said.
The city would then permit the county to attach the sewer line to the city treatment facility at a location near the northwest corner of Willowdale Manor.
All the houses that connect to the system would become customers of the city sewer utility, paying the going rate plus 25 percent for an out-of-city customer, and each homeowner would pay the city a tap-in fee of $1,920.
The county must agree to not object should the city petition to annex the subdivision.
Crown Point officials said the arrangement would alleviate problems with wastewater overflow after heavy rains affecting the nearby White Oak subdivision, which is inside city limits.
The Lake County commissioners took over the troubled Hermits Lake sewage plant 20 years ago. The Hermits Lake developer, who ran a small, private treatment plant, had been cited repeatedly by the state for dumping raw or poorly treated sewage into Foss Ditch, a waterway which drains south into the communities of Lake Dalecarlia and Lowell.