ODWW Project: Sewer Connection Options

Our Out of District Wastewater (ODWW) Project has been in full swing since May 2019 when we first broke ground to start running wastewater lines around the Live Oak Golf Course. These “main lines” are the wastewater pipes which all interested customers in the Phase 1 area of the Project will eventually be able to connect to, pumping their wastewater to our S-5 Water Recycling Plant (S-5 WRP). Phase 1 “Regular Connections” are currently expected to begin in late March/early April 2021 pending the completion of a new lift station and improvements to our S-5 WRP by local contractor, Austin Engineering Co., Inc., who started the work in March 2020. These major Project components must be completed before the individual property connections can be made.

Some customers who have seen the sewer-related construction, or possibly a neighbor being connected, have voiced concerns that they may be missing out on their opportunity to connect to public sewer. Our reply:

“Don’t worry! We have not skipped you!”

We continue to run the main lines as well as complete sewer connections to customers who qualify for an “Early Connection” due to a septic system failure, new construction, or, in some cases, a remodel.

Homeowner Amy Creed stands with LMUD General Manager Earl Foster at the site of the first ODWW Project grinder pump install during the pilot phase of the Project, Feb. 2018.

“We ended up being project number one with this sewer project and we really needed it!…. I can’t say enough good things about what Earl and the rest of LMUD are doing for our community. They are making it doable and affordable for those of us who needed a solution for a broken septic tank, but also giving options to those who just want space to put in a pool or use their land for something other than a septic field.”
– Amy Creed, homeowner at LMUD’s first ODWW Project Early Connection.

Our first Early Connections began in February 2018 during the Pilot Phase of the Project, testing out the feasibility of extending our wastewater system and converting existing septic systems within an established neighborhood. The complexity of these installations and the hilly nature of the community necessitate the installation of a low pressure sewer system, which requires a grinder pump to be installed at each property. Since the ODWW Project is expected to take approximately 10 years to complete, it’s no wonder so many people are eager to get on this Early Connection list, but what is this list and who’s eligible to be on it?

There are three types of connection options available to LMUD customers in the ODWW Project service area:

  • Early Connection: Property owners facing a need to connect to the public sewer system prior to their property’s anticipated Regular Connection date may qualify to connect early if they; 1) are building on an empty lot (having no current septic system), 2) have issues with their septic system that require immediate attention (i.e. it has been deemed irreparable by a licensed septic company), or 3) have scheduled a remodel that requires use of their septic drain field or other modifications that make their existing wastewater system inadequate. These properties must be located in an area where we already have main sewer lines nearby. There is an upfront, non-refundable fee associated with an Early Connection and there is no guarantee when the connection will occur.
  • Regular Connection: When we get close to our scheduled connection dates of properties along specific newly installed wastewater main lines, we will contact each current customer listed on the LMUD account for that property (by e-mail, phone, and in person if needed). The property owner will then be asked to fill out a contract stating their decision to connect at an anticipated connection date. There are no upfront fees associated with a Regular connection. Connections will be made in a sequential order along predetermined routes.
  • Decline to Connect / Option for Late Connection: Property owners presented with a contract during their property’s opportunity for a Regular Connection must select “Decline to Connect” on their contract if they are not ready to connect at that time or prefer to remain on septic. The option to connect later remains available to the property owners or future property owners, but an upfront, non-refundable fee will be associated with this option and there is no guarantee when the connection will occur.

For a map of the project area, rates, and updates on the Project, visit the ODWW Project section of our website. To determine if you qualify for an Early Connection or want to find out your anticipated connection date (currently available to property owners in the Phase 1 area only), please contact Stephanie Threinen, LMUD Public Information Liaison at (512) 261-6222 ext. 175 or stepht@lakewaymud.org.