Seeley Swan Pathfinder -


By Don Larson
Seeley Lake, Montana 

Let's get back to the drawing board for the sewer


August 6, 2020

Missoula County Health Department Specialist Jim Erven doesn’t seem to get it. The residents in the Seeley Lake Sewer District fully understand the Health Department is a bully, it does its work poorly and the $40-million sewer project it is pushing will further impoverish us. Let me explain further.

The Board has never fully tested the area aquifer to accurately determine the “need” for a sewer. Lake water quality remains virtually unchanged over the past 40 years I have resided in this community, despite considerable growth.

The Board has never studied or offered alternative, innovative new septic technologies which are affordable and could be used in sensitive lakeshore and riverfront areas.

The Board has not intervened when obvious lakeshore septic systems such as the commercial RV pump-out station on Highway 83 threaten lake water quality

The Board does not understand its cheerleading for a central sewer system in Seeley Lake has attracted only a few businesspeople who want to “grow” Seeley Lake and a few lakeshore dwellers who know full well they are polluting the lake and have elected NOT to take responsibility for their effluent wastes.

The Board does not understand many of the sewer supporters are driven by desperation because Health Department regulators keep changing the rules and have made a new septic so expensive it discourages growth and development.

The Board does not recognize the basic rights to participate, know and vote on indebtedness guaranteed Montana citizens by its constitution.

Good on the Seeley Lake Sewer District Board for indicating it will let us residents vote on this really stupid proposal. We will vote it down, then we can get back to the drawing board. Maybe then Mr. Erven and the Health Department will come up with a sensible proposal which protects the entire watershed.

Perhaps, after we have defeated this proposal, Mr. Erven and the Health Department folks will understand a majority of the residents do NOT feel a need to grow the community.


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