Monday, November 2, 2009

City of El Cerrito Street Repairs Conflict with Stege Sewer Lateral Ordinance

Thanks to voter approval of Measure A: the El Cerrito Pothole Repair, Local Street Improvement and Maintenance Measure, the City of El Cerrito is in process of much needed repair to its city streets. However, with improvements underway, real estate agents have noticed a conflict with an existing Sewer Lateral Ordinance.

El Cerrito (along with Kensington and part of Richmond) is included in the "Stege Sanitary District." In 2005, the District revised its Sewer Lateral and Compliance Policy, and now requires property owners to obtain a “Certificate of Compliance” upon the sale of property, prior to the close of escrow. Base on the the ordinance's definition of a lateral, compliance includes the connection to the main sewer. The main sewer in El Cerrtio often lies in the center of the newly paved streets.

According to Suzanne Iarla, Public Information Specialist for the City of El Cerrito, "this is a multi-agency issue." In short, the Stege Sanitary District would like home owners to comply with their 2005 ordinance, and the City of El Cerrito Public Works Department would like to maintain the integrity of the newly refurbished city streets.

Stege's official stance:
Because the City places a moratorium on recently paved streets that prohibits digging through new pavement for up to five years, a potential conflict exists between the City’s moratorium and Stege’s requirement to have a sewer lateral inspected and repaired (if necessary) before a house is sold.

If you have any existing sanitary sewer lateral problems or plan to sell your house in the next five years, now is the time for you to do a sewer lateral inspection and any necessary repair/replacement work before the street is resurfaced.
I spoke today with Rex Delizo, from the Engineering Department at Stege. His office would prefer that homeowners get proactive and repair the sewer laterals before the city street crews arrive. Barring such cooperation, he outlined three basic options for compliance in instances where the city's moratorium takes effect:
  1. Video the sewer lateral and if the portion in the street passes, you can make all needed repairs to the line on the subject property.
  2. If the street section is in disrepair, you can opt to do the accessible portion now, and agree to complete the remaining section in the street once the moratorium has passed.
  3. Talk to Stege about new techniques which allow for full replacement and compliance without disrupting the newly resurfaced street.
For more information contact:

Stege Sanitary District

7500 Schmidt Lane
El Cerrito, CA 94530-0537
(510) 524-4668 Office
(510) 524-4697 Fax
(510) 524-4667 24-hour

City of El Cerrito Public Works

10890 San Pablo Avenue
El Cerrito, CA 94530-2323
(510) 215-4300 Office
(510) 215-4319 Fax

No comments: