Wolverine Lake has awarded a contract for a sanitary sewer hookup project that will impact eastern residents.
The contract was approved at the Village Council’s Wednesday, Jan. 12 meeting, following a public hearing. Now village administrators are extending the opportunity to village residents to participate in ancillary special assessment districts (SADs) for individual hookups if they have access to a sewer main.
A sewer main SAD has been created to cover the cost of sewer hookups along Indiana; Angola; Shankin Drive; Shankin Court; Newport Court; Paulette; Solano; Ventura; and Briar Ridge.
Of the eight bids received, C & E Construction won out with its low bid of $230,575, almost half of what was originally estimated.
“Overall, residents were very positive given that the costs came in lower than expected,” said Village Council President John Magee. “We went with the lowest bid and this contractor has done most of the sewer work in the surrounding areas.”
The highest bid submitted came in at $465,471.
Broken down, the total cost of $376,325 includes construction costs of $275,000; administrative costs including surveying and engineering of $59,500; administrative and bond costs of $23,000; bond attorney fees of $14,000; and a contingency of $4,825.
Costs divided by the 216 parcels impacted would mean each lot would be charged $1,742.25 or $221.76 over a period of 10 years, a substantial difference from the original total project cost estimate of $645,680, or $2,975 per property.
The SAD allows people to connect to the sewer main of their own volition or if their septic system fails.
The village doesn’t mandate sewer connections unless a homeowner’s septic system fails or the homeowner adds more than 100 square feet onto an existing home.
Currently, Wolverine Lake sends the lion’s share of its sewage to the Commerce Wastewater Treatment Plant, but a small portion generated in the southwest corner of the village is routed to the Walled Lake-Novi Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Wolverine Lake officials had been deliberating whether the village should contract with Walled Lake or Novi for wastewater capacity in the future or maintain the status quo with Commerce Township. After the results of a Walled Lake-Novi Wastewater Treatment Plant study were released in March, the village could have gone either way since there was additional capacity available.
The Commerce Township Board of Trustees voted unanimously in August to dole out $1.2 million from the township’s water and sewer fund to help pay for sewer line construction, since Wolverine Lake didn’t have adequate funds available.
The next step is to create a secondary SAD in conjunction with the sewer main hookup for individual homes in the village’s eastern district, as well as residents on Laguna, Wolverine Drive and Lakeview to install sanitary sewers.
The average cost to village residents for standard sites is anticipated to be approximately $15,500. Actual costs will be determined following an engineer’s review of the property. Due to variables such as distance from the road, the number of septic tanks, and location of the sewage pipe, costs may vary from house to house.
“This is a voluntary SAD. Only those who want to tie in would sign up for the SAD,” Village Engineer Mike Powell said. “We normally get 20 to 25 percent of the people who desire to tie in and it would be a major advantage that allows them to pay this over a 10-year period instead of coming up with $15,000 up front.”
The village is also offering residents with homes along South Commerce Road from Glengary Road to the village’s southern boundaries the opportunity to hook up into the Commerce Township sewer line through a third SAD. A letter will be sent out within the next week or so.
“This is the first planning stage to establish a separate SAD to assist them in connecting to that sewer,” Powell said. “The administration doesn’t want to ignore these residents along the westerly side of South Commerce all the way to the village limits. These residents will have the ability to connect for the first time if they so desire.”
A third SAD is necessary since the some of the charges are different and could exceed $15,000.
The village plans to issue one single bond as seed money for the SADs.
“That’s so all can take advantage of pooling together all at once,” Magee said.
The deadline for the villagewide sanitary sewer hookup is Feb. 23. Residents are required to sign a petition at Village Hall indicating their interest.