Morrin family uses port-a-potty while sewer repair in limbo

A senior Morrin family says they are patiently waiting for the village they live in to resolve a serious sewage problem that is the responsibility of the community, not theirs.

Howard and Lynn Helton, known to readers as the former Mayors of Morrin and the recently retired elected councilor, respectively, told the ECA Review in an interview on Nov. 4 that the village should fix a serious sewage problem off their property and while they wait, they are forced to use a potty at the back of their property.

Readers should note that typically municipalities pay for sewer repairs on public land and homeowners pay for repairs on private land.

In a statement to the newspaper that day, Howard wrote: “The council passed a resolution in December 2019 to remove all sewer connections in the village on 2nd North Avenue. It has been found that the connecting lines have not been replaced since installation in the 1950s and not when the main line was installed in 2011.

“In September 2020, it was reported from the village’s public works that there were problems in all but one of the sites. The village was as aware of this report as that of Certa Inspections, which clearly identified a problem with (the Heltons) side walls, but did not inform the Heltons or attempt to repair them.

It was only when the Heltons made a series of requests for information from the village that the village announced that Certa Inspections could not carry out a side check due to a blockade.

Since the village was tasked with determining the integrity of the sideline as per the resolution, it was up to them to clear the line so that a proper camera survey could be carried out. This corresponds to the waste water directive.

“Despite the Heltons’ request that the village do something to ensure the integrity of the sites, nothing was done. This page, along with the other four pages, could have been included in the 2021 budget, as the council and administration were well aware of the issue prior to the approval of the budget in May 2021.

“On May 8th, the sewer system retreated to the basement of the Helton. The Heltons cleared the blockade at this point and encountered (a blockage) at roughly the same point as at the Certa inspection.

Since the village had declared prior to the blockade that it would not pay for a camera that would be required after a plumber cleared the block, the Heltons did the cleaning themselves to save the cost of a plumber.

Even under these circumstances, the village claims that responsibility for the sewer connection rests with the Heltons.

As of May 26, 2021, the Heltons have stopped flushing solids and have rented a mobile toilet. In addition, every time the washing machine or the tub is used, the basement drain is monitored in the event of a backwater so that the water source can be shut off.

The village claims it will not take responsibility for the situation until another backup is made.

Since the village refused to answer the Heltons, (the family) enlisted the help of a lawyer. This did not help as the village did not react.

“Sept. 28 Without the village trying to find a solution, the Heltons contacted Certa Inspections and carried out a camera inspection, the results of which were relayed to the village. The report clearly shows a significant problem with the village side.

Incidentally, the major obstacle is still at the point that Certa determined a year ago. That is, at the point at the end of the 24 feet of the liquid-filled diving line, just before the transition to the main line, ”the statement added.

When asked for comment by the ECA Review on November 3, the village’s Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Annette Plachner, stated that the village was unable to comment on Helton’s sewage problems because it was one Litigation acts.

Howard stated the last time the village referred this issue to its insurance company, adding that it looks like the couple will be using the potty for the foreseeable future.

He found that with the cost of the portable toilet plus the camerawork, they’re about $ 1,000 down the drain.

Howard said he would like to see the village of Morrin clean up the sewers he suspects they will have to dig up, but had his doubts.

“I can’t trust you to come and make it clear to us,” Howard said at his house. “Not if your attitude is, ‘Call us when you see it in your basement.'”

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