Sewer commission declines to sign

WILTON – For the third time in two years, the Sewer Commissioners have declined to sign the Milford-Wilton Intermunicipal Sewer Agreement, as required by the state.

The commissioners met on Thursday, Dec. 18, and discussed the issue.

“It was a unanimous vote,” Chairman Tom Schultz said after the meeting.

The agreement codifies the operation of the sewer system. Milford’s system includes Wilton, but Wilton does not have any part in the running of the system. “They recently raised our rates to help pay for their capital improvements. We had no say, just got handed the bill, another $12,000.”

“The problem is,” Schultz said, “in Milford, the water and sewer commissions are the same. In Wilton they are separate. They will shut off water to collect unpaid sewer bills and they want us to do the same.”

Wilton supplies water to the Pine Valley section of Milford, the area between the Souhegan River and the town line.

With the new apartments in the Pine Valley Mill, “we have about 100 Milford users,” Schultz said. “In Wilton, we are not part of the town (government), and we don’t shut water off” except in very rare cases. “We believe having water is a right. Especially in the winter.”

Wilton’s Water System was chartered by the state legislature in 1904 and is autonomous.

“We are willing to sign the agreement if they remove that clause,” Schultz said.”We have no authority to collect somebody else’s bills.”

He added, “The state requires this agreement and they are the ones holding it up.”

Milford is currently considering extending their water system as far west as the river.

“We will consider joining with them when they do,” Schultz said.

Previous members of the Water Commission advocated connecting with the Milford system, but the present board is “more cautious.” he said.