SOUTHWICK-The Southwick Select Board March 1 approved the first reading of a sewer abatement policy.
The policy applies to the filling of pools only and was based on similar policies in other communities.
“We looked at about 40 communities and eight had a policy in place. We looked at those to try to figure out what would work for Southwick,“ said Department of Public Works Director Randy Brown.
Brown said he and Selectman Russ Fox created a policy for pool filling abatements only, noting that it would be for filling new pools or refilling a pool after installation of a new liner, not for topping off water to an existing pool.
“This is for a complete filling of a pool,“ said Brown.
To obtain an abatement, a homeowner would fill out an application which would include a fee of $25 which is similar to the “final read” water meter fee in place now.
“I think this policy is fair and in line with other communities,“ said Brown.
When asked how much 3,000 gallons of water would cost, Brown said it would be about $25, which is the cost of the fee to file for the pool filling abatement.
There were several requests for abatements in 2020, which sparked the Select Board and Brown to look into creating a policy. Brown said many residents spent more tme at home because of the pandemic and paid more attention to the cost of their water and increased their water usage.