A legal agreement has been reached that requires Lexington to fix problems with its storm and sanitary sewer systems within the next 11 to 13 years.
The agreement requires the study, design and implementation of numerous construction projects to repair sewer pipes and to improve waste-water treatment plants.
The Decree state Lexington has failed to properly maintain both the sanitary and storm water sewer systems. This afternoon the Consent Decree received approval from the Urban County Council. But before the Consent Decree can take effect the state and federal government has to sign it. There must also be a period for the public to comment and there must be continued support for the decree by the U.S. EPA.
It will cost Lexington citizens about $250-300 million over the next 11-13 years, including a $425,000 fine by the U.S. EPA.
The average sanitary sewer residential household bill is expected to increase by about $5 a month, from $10 to $15 beginning May 1st. A second $5 increase in the monthly sanitary sewer fee is expected next year.
City officials say even with these increases, Lexington's rates remain comparable or below those of most surrounding cities. The cost of the storm water fee is still being calculated.
Coming up on 27NEWSFIRST at 5:30 the city gave us a rare look inside the sewer system. You may be disgusted to see just what we found when we went down the drain.