Time to end the sewer nightmare

| September 23, 2020 12:00 AM

When I read the Opinion article in the Valley Press by Dan Risland, I realized that there may be a lot of us here in Paradise that are going through a lot of stress and worry as a result of this ongoing, and unwelcomed, sewer project here.

When my husband Hans and I retired and moved here 13 years ago, we felt we had finally found a beautiful and peaceful place to live out our remaining years. The last few years have been anything but peaceful. There seems to be a mood of constant stress, anger, at times even bullying, aimed at my husband and I from people determined to force us to sign on to a sewer system that we do not believe in, didn’t ask for, and were not informed about until the 11th hour. Now we find that although we were told that we would not be presented with expenses other than the monthly service that in reality there will be monies required to be paid to our taxes and a monthly service that may increase.

Several weeks ago, we received a phone call from an individual that we were led to believe was on this sewer board. According to this source, we were informed that we needed to go up to the Thompson Falls courthouse to research our property records, deeds, and other documents concerning our particular lot. When I called the courthouse, I was quoted a huge amount of money that would be required for this research. When I reported back to the individual that contacted us, the individual then asked us to produce the deed to our property, which we refused. Then we were told that we needed to get a survey. When we inquired about the survey at the courthouse, we found that this could actually cost us up to $2,000 plus monies for other paperwork. We could not afford this. Then we received a letter stating that if we did not sign on to this project, and once the project was finished, then we would not be allowed to have our septic tank serviced in the event that we had a problem. Under this pressure, and by this time, my husband and I, who are nearing 80 years of age and in poor health, and not knowing what would happen next, were bullied into signing one of their documents. The following day we wrote a letter to the sewer board telling them we felt we were being pressured and that we strongly disagreed with their tactics.

We are writing this letter because we think there are others in the community that may have some of the same problems. We are on a fixed income, in ill health, and cannot afford the demands of the sewer board people. The pressure has become so bad that we have had to block some phone numbers just to have a day of peace. This situation is tearing the community apart and I have pleaded with some of these sewer board members to end this nightmare, pointing out that we are in the middle of a pandemic. My husband and I have actually been in quarantine and we are Opinion worried sick about our family members who work in this dangerous situation. This is taking a toll on all of us here in Paradise. Some of the division caused by this situation, and the loss of friendship has pitted neighbor against neighbor, and friends against friends, that may never be repaired. We would like the situation to end.

—Tiki Arp, Paradise