DHY Water Partnership Officials Get Input from Off-Cape Group

Yarmouth Selectman Tracy Post

YARMOUTH – Negotiations are underway between the towns of Dennis, Harwich and Yarmouth on the Clean Water Community Partnership and officials recently met with leaders from three other Massachusetts municipalities who created a similar agreement.

The DHY Clean Water Community Partnership would be responsible for treating effluent from the three communities through a regional wastewater facility.

Representatives from each town are part of a working group that will work to finalize the agreement.

The engineering firm CDM Smith, Inc., which is working with the DHY partnership to develop special legislation to establish the wastewater district, brought representatives from Mansfield, Foxborough and Norton to Dennis at the end of October to discuss how they made it work.

“They came down and kind of gave us a history of what they have been through, the successes and failures – there were really no failures in the end – but how they successfully navigated through to where they are today,” said Yarmouth Selectman Tracy Post.

Post said the meeting came at a great time as the towns are in the early stages of negotiations.

“It was great information for us to be able to start with knowing how it has been successful with them,” she said.

The MFN partnership, which was the first of its kind in the Commonwealth, took several years to complete. That partnership even had a head start as a treatment facility was already constructed and operational.

“We are really starting fresh here,” Post said.

Harwich has some infrastructure already in place as an agreement has already been entered into with neighboring Chatham on the eastern side of town.

Dennis and Yarmouth do not have any pipes or infrastructure in the ground yet.

Tackling the wastewater treatment issue on a regional basis provides an opportunity for significant cost savings for Cape Cod communities.

“I think the concern is that we all have to make sure that it is fair,” Post said.

Post said the original timeline for having a completed agreement was before Town Meetings next spring, but she does not believe the towns will be able to hammer it out that quickly.

“There’s a lot of nuts and bolts to this in terms of bonding issues and things like that,” Post said. “But hopefully as we move along and discussions hash out we’ll get to the same place [MFN] were able to get to.”

Legislation has been filed to establish the district by the Cape Cod delegation and will head to the Joint Committee on Municipalities and Regional Government. The legislation could be passed during the informal session through the end of the year.

The agreement would require approval at Town Meeting for the 3 communities.

If passed at town meetings in 2019 it would still be a few years before shovels would hit the ground for the construction of a treatment plant.

About CapeCod.com NewsCenter

The award-winning CapeCod.com NewsCenter provides the Cape Cod community with a constant, credible source for local news. We are on the job seven days a week.

737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
Contact Us | Advertise Terms of Use 
Employment and EEO | Privacy