To the Editor:
I would like to take this opportunity to make the citizens of Middletown aware of the crucially important Mattabassett referendum question on the Nov. 6 ballot.
It is critically important that we endorse this Mattabassett Sewer Project expenditure and our becoming a member of the District. The Mattabassett District located in Cromwell is made up of charter town members New Britain, Berlin and Cromwell.
They as well as we (Middletown's River Road plant) are under a Federal EPA and State DEEP mandate to upgrade our plants. The city of Middletown through appropriate legislation has chosen to join the Mattabasett's endeavor to upgrade its sewer service. We have also been voted into the District by existing member towns.
The reasons to support a $37 million bond investment that includes membership to the District, all piping, pump station and all ancillary items are as follows:
- The upgrading of the Mattabassett plant will substantially improve the environment (effluence discharge into the Connecticut River) immensely.
- It will stabilize sewer rates for all four towns involved for the near future.
- We will decommission our River Road sewer plant (another environmental plus).
- If we (Middletown) are mandated to build our own plant, it would cost us $15 million to $20 million more if we did it ourselves.
- Joining the Mattabassett and decommissioning our River Road plant will enable us to finally embellish and astutely develop our beautiful riverfront.
- Because of our prudent and creative handling of our bond finances, we will be able to handle this particular bond debt.
In addition, there will be available to us federal (EPA) and state (Department of Energy and Environmental Protection) grants and low-cost loans to substantially defray the cost of the project. The Mattabassett bond question is a future "game-changer" as it relates to our riverfront.
Therefore, with all the aforementioned reasons in mind, I strongly and respectfully urge all eligible Middletown voters to vote "YES" for the Mattabassett Sewer District Bond referendum Question and more importantly, Middletown's future. Thank you.
Thomas J. Serra, former mayor and present council majority leader, Middletown