Tag Archives: Neal Road septage ponds

Cost of pumping your septic tank will roughly double under new county deal – city of Chico refuses our septage while laying plans to run a sewer pipe from Paradise

19 Apr

Well, I found out why the county treated my questions about their new septage deal  like poison ivy – they’re about to double the cost of pumping a septic tank in Butte County.

Butte County is taxpayer and citizen hostile. I can’t believe how they handled two simple questions I posed to our once casual and friendly county CAO, Paul Hahn – “could you give us an idea of what it will cost to pump out  tank once the septage ponds are closed and the transfer station is sending our septage to Lincoln?” and “where exactly in Lincoln?”

I also asked Hahn in conversation, why isn’t our septage going to the Chico wastewater treatment plant.

Well, you saw Hahn’s response. It was huffy –  county counsel, Bruce Alpert, was positively hostile. He lectured me about the public relations act.

“The public records act does not require a public agency to provide responses to questions…”

Wow. I wish I could ask him, how is a citizen supposed to get public information without asking a question, but he threatened to charge me next time! 

I can’t post the letter cause it was loaded in such a way that it can’t be cut and paste, but maybe I’ll take a picture of it later or load it in with my scanner. I can’t believe how nasty Alpert got over two simple pieces of public information.

This information was all discussed at public meetings by the board of supervisors, I asked Hahn if he could direct me to the conversation. I couldn’t find any reports regarding shipping our septage to the Chico wastewater treatment plant – apparently there has been no real conversation about that. Sounds like the city is just flat refusing to take our septage, while making a deal with Paradise to run a sewer pipe all the way to the river to accommodate their sewage.

The city is “concerned that the biological strength of septage waste may upset their treatment system…” Wow, so Paradise’ poop is cleaner than ours? What?

So, the county has walked away from discussions with the city of Chico and contacted a firm in Lincoln – Invirotec Facility. 

And now we know why they were so touchy about answering my questions – all this is going to double the cost of pumping your tank – the current disposal fee at Neal Road dump is 15 cents a gallon, the new deal will raise it to a minimum of 24 cents a gallon but a maximum of 32 cents a gallon. The cost of a truck load will go from $211 to $450. Depending on the size of your tank, you could be paying an increase of $34/per year, and that’s if you follow staff’s recommendation and only get your tank pumped every 7 years. That’s staff’s  analysis – most experts say you should pump your tank every three to six years, depending on the size of your household. 

I believe they want to force Chicoans on sewer. I had thought that was crazy because the wastewater treatment plant was at capacity a few years ago. I found some notes from an old meeting, I’ll talk about that next time.

But I’ll say, the county of Butte is hostile to the citizens. This information request was just that – a citizen’s right to know. Hahn and Alpert treated me like a  rat in their pantry.   My supervisor, Maureen Kirk, sat through the whole conversation with her thumb up her ass. Kirk is a staff shill, she’s completely dependent on staff, makes no decisions of her own. She didn’t answer my questions because she couldn’t – it’s in one ear, vote, and out the other ear with Kirk.

Kirk should step down for 2018, give somebody else a chance to do a better job.