APCC Proposes Zero Interest Septic System Loans | Bourne Briefs

The Association to Preserve Cape Cod suggests Barnstable County introduce a funding option to help homeowners manage the cost of connecting to municipal sewers or upgrading existing sewer systems.

In a letter to the Barnstable County Commissioners, APCC Executive Director Andrew Gottlieb urged the county to lower the current 5 percent interest rate billed to homeowners under the Community Septic Management Program to 0 percent. By reducing the interest burden for homeowners to 0 percent, the county could offer free financing to thousands of homeowners in the Cape who are either upgrading their sewage treatment plants or connecting to sewers.

“The Cape has failed to invest in the advanced wastewater treatment that is needed to restore and maintain our marine waters,” said Gottlieb in the APCC’s letter to the commissioners. “There are strong indications that the period of neglect is ending as many cities are buoyed up by the creation of new funding instruments such as the SRF 0% interest-free loan, the creation and funding of the Cape Islands Water Protection Trust, the Local Option Water Investment Infrastructure Fund, and improved short-term rental income for Local Options are driving long overdue wastewater management projects. Although these funding instruments have reduced the impact of these projects on the local tax base, they remain a significant expense and we need to use all the tools available in the region to make these projects as affordable as possible, ”he wrote.

“APCC suggests this move will be the most effective step the county can take to both support community efforts to clean up our waters and improve the finances of families who need to be hooked up to sewers,” said Gottlieb.

A sewer connection can typically cost a homeowner anywhere from $ 2,000 to $ 6,000, while a wastewater treatment plant upgrade can cost anywhere near $ 13,000.

The proposed adjustment to the interest rate of the program would be a measure the county can take without requiring the approval of state lawmakers or a government agency.

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