Camden homeowners face fines

I have been notified that surface water entering my basement and going into the sewer system must be remedied within 150 days or face $100-a-day fines. I was told that over 90 homeowners received the letter, with nearly 1,000 more houses to be inspected. Many houses in Camden were built in a similar fashion to mine and deal with surface water the same way so I expect a high number of violations.

I contacted the wastewater department and a representative came to my house. The purpose was to look at various options to correct the problem. He was helpful but the major problem remains. The costs for various types of remediation are not known so I will have to find out. It will not be cheap.

My primary concerns relate to the timing and tone of the letter and the huge cost to homeowners. I had no advance knowledge the certified letter was coming. The tone was not good. I had 150 days to correct a problem the town has faced for years or be fined each day of violation. I felt as if I  was guilty of a crime.

Second, not everyone in town who faces a potential violation has been served. With 1,000 houses to go, the process could take months, if not years.

The costs will be high. For example, 500 homeowners at $1,000 is $500,000. This on top of recent property taxes, which added nearly $1,000 to my taxes, with higher taxes next year. At the time I received the letter, I was getting estimates for having my house painted.

Finally, was this the best option? What else was considered?

I plan to attend the select board meeting on Feb. 6 and state these concerns.

Robert Williams

Camden