Bellone announces launch of “Reclaim Our Water” website

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced today the launch of a new dedicated website – ReclaimOurWater.info – that will provide residents extensive information about the County’s recently adopted Reclaim Our Water Septic Improvement Program.

The program is the first-of-its-kind in Suffolk County and is designed to help homeowners fund advanced nitrogen removal septic systems at an affordable rate.  By installing advanced wastewater treatment systems, homeowners would in turn play a significant role in the County’s plan to reduce nitrogen pollution and protect Long Island waters.

ReclaimOurWater.info will be a one-stop shop for our residents who want to learn more about the program, how they can sign up and how we can collectively turn the tide to finally reclaim our water,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.  “We have taken significant strides in Suffolk County to formulate a comprehensive and realistic plan that reduces the high levels nitrogen in our waters, while making it affordable for homeowners to replace their outdated septic systems and cesspools with some of the most technologically advanced wastewater treatment systems.”

ReclaimOurWater.info provides homeowners with financial, regulatory, technical and infrastructure aspects of the Septic Improvement Program. The website also provides wastewater industry leaders with information pertaining to septic industry training that are in accordance to County law and the County’s recently updated Sanitary Code.

Residents are also encouraged to contact septicdemo@suffolkcountyny.gov with questions pertaining to the program and their current septic or cesspool situation.

The program is scheduled to launch on July 1 through an application process, where an estimated 400 Suffolk County homeowners would be selected to receive funding.  The Suffolk County Legislature unanimously approved the program on May 16, 2017.

The program allows homeowners to apply for a grant to cover the cost of an advanced wastewater treatment system. The grant, which is estimated in the amount of $10,000 to $11,000, would enable eligible homeowners to cover the costs of systems that cost between $16,200 and $19,200.

In addition to the grant, homeowners could qualify to finance the remaining cost over a 15 year period at a low three percent fixed interest rate.  The loan program will be administered by Community Development Corporation of Long Island Funding Corp., with financial support from Bridgehampton National Bank.  Comparatively, the cost to replace and install a new cesspool or septic system with capabilities to reduce nitrogen is estimated between $6,000 and $8,000.

Since December 2014, Suffolk County’s Septic Demonstration Pilot Program has tested new wastewater treatment technologies to reduce nitrogen pollution.  Through a lottery process, the County has so far selected 42 homeowners to receive a system at no cost, including free installation, maintenance and monitoring for five years.  More than 360,000 homes in Suffolk County, more than the entire state of New Jersey, rely on outdated cesspools and septic systems.

 

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