Some sewer laterals are adding to backup problems in Muskego

March 20, 2012

Ten percent of sanitary sewer laterals in a pilot project area in Muskego have been found to contribute to sewer backups in nearby homes.

David Simpson, director of public works, said the pilot area is in the Independence Drive and Freedom Avenue neighborhood. The city inspected 70 laterals going from homes to the sanitary sewer in the street starting last November. It found seven needed fixing.

To help homeowners do that, the city is working toward tapping into grant money from the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District that would pay 100 percent of the repair cost plus the cost of restoring the yard after the laterals are dug up. The Common Council is expected to approve an agreement with the MMSD that would open the door for that on March 27. The program would be voluntary.

The Independence/Freedom area was chosen for the pilot program because it suffers from sanitary sewer backups due partly to rainwater getting into the sanitary system and overwhelming it, Simpson said. Thousands of dollars also have been spent on improving the sewer lift station in the area that has played a major role in the backups.

The city would like to help homeowners in other areas and will set priorities for its next inspections depending on the age of sewers and other factors, Simpson said.

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