JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMIZ.)
Jefferson City voters will decide on April 5 if they will allow the city to raise millions of dollars through bonds to update its sewage system.
The city council voted unanimously in December to put the $44 million bond issue on the April ballot.
The issue with the current sewage system is raw sewage overflows, which can be a threat to the environment and public health, the city says in materials explaining the bond issue. Other issues concerning the city are compliance issues that can lead to EPA enforcement action and fines, which the city says could increase rates.
In an email earlier this afternoon, Mayor Carrie Tergin emphasized that this is a very important ballot issue. "It allows for bonding to make necessary infrastructure improvements while keeping our rates reasonable"
If the bonds are approved it will help with the cost of living, costumers' fees will stay in the community, and support local jobs and contractors, the city says in pitching the ballot issue.
Wastewater division director, Eric Seaman says it's crucial to keep updating and maintaining the infrastructures in order to keep people healthy.
"We have to keep investing in our infrastructure... it's really old. We've got 80 and 100-year-old sewer mains and that sort of thing", said Seaman.
And Seaman says if the bond isn't passed the sewers in Jefferson City could keep failing.
"There would be more incidences of basement backups into people's homes and overflows hurting water quality", said Seaman.
Public Works Director Matt Morasch told the city council in December, that low-interest rates on the current bond market will help the city.