Republican Aldermen Call for Special Meeting

Residents deserve answers regarding Naugatuck River sewage disaster

Recognizing the need to provide transparency and accountability to residents and taxpayers, the Republican members of the Board of Aldermen are calling on the board’s leadership to schedule a special meeting prior to the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Aldermen, in order to discuss the October 9th sewage release into the Naugatuck River and the city’s response to the release.

“Numerous questions remain to be answered and waiting until our next scheduled meeting of November 20th is to do a disservice not only to the residents in the immediate vicinity, but all of Waterbury and the surrounding towns to whom the river and its health are so vital.” – 5th District Alderman Roger Sherman

The minority caucus is calling for a special meeting to be called within the next two weeks so that city staff and the administration can answer questions and provide information beyond the preliminary and basic details that have been released to the public so far. The following is a list of the immediate questions that the minority caucus feels should be answered in a timely fashion and without a delay until November 20th

To wit: ·

  • Knowing that any sewer discharge violates state statutes and there are pretty clear reporting guidelines, why was the reporting so delayed and why were the public and surrounding residents not officially notified by city and/or state officials until several days after the sewage release?
  • What is being done to ensure a prompt and speedy public warning/acknowledgement of any future releases?
  • How was the electrical system for the plant compromised? How is the transfer switch for the generator power not isolated from this? Was it a result of bad design; incorrect installation; poor maintenance; all of the above?
  • When were the generator last tested and the transfer to generator power last drilled and tested? Are there records of these tests?
  • What is the emergency plan when the plant loses power? Was it followed?
  • Could residents and businesses have been notified in an emergency fashion and asked to limit water/sewer usage during the outage?
  • When the plant was offline, what happened with the City’s pump/lift stations? Was capacity at the wet wells available and could sewage have been detained there while the system was brought back online?
  • Is DEEP and the police department the ideal investigatory units? Should City should be looking to an outside engineering firm with expertise in treatment plant and collection system expertise?

Attachment: Sewage Spill Release

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