Naples City Council rejects sewer system proposal for homes

Naples City Council decided to pull the plug on a new sewer system after hours of discussion Wednesday.

“I will be put out of my home, others will be put out of their homes,” Peter Winter said.

People in the Gulf Acres and Rosemary Heights neighborhoods in North Naples currently run on septic. It’s been that way for decades.

But the City of Naples runs their water utilities — and was prepared to change them over to sewer and storm water at the cost of $24,000 a piece, a number that has since increased from $18,000.

“They’re tacking on … you have to hook up and pay someone to remove your septic system that has to be up front,” said Winter.

The city gave two options: pay up front, or see an increase in taxes for the next 20 years. Neither are good choices for landlords like McKay.

“It was ridiculous, I’d have to raise the rent on everyone, and they’d leave me,” McKay said.

If the new system passed, McKay and other landlords would have been charged per unit.

“I’d have to charge per apartment even though we only have one line coming in and with this price were coming up at close to $100,000.

And people like Peter Winter would have to look for a new place to live.

“My wife is a school teacher that’s all the income there is for the house,” Winter said.

The county and city are working together on this project because of the flooding issues in the past.

Though fixing flooding issues are still a concern, they said they’d discuss it as a later date because the flood waters are a health hazard.

The city will have to look into new ways to make sure garbage and fecal matter aren’t pushed into the streets if it floods again.

MORE: Collier County pushes to move hundreds of homes to sewer system

Reporter:Olivia Mancino
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