On June 23, there was an article in the Sun Journal about Poland building an addition onto the Whittier Middle School. When I read the article, I was stunned — nothing was said about the lack of a public sewerage system. The middle school shares a 17-year-old septic system with the high school. Even with the best of maintenance, septic systems have been known to fail.

Seven years ago, there was a proposal to extend the town sewer out to the school complex. Cost at that time was estimated at $5 million, but the work was never done. The cost today would probably top $8 million, maybe as much as $10 million. Add that cost to the cost of the school addition and the total cost will be well past $12 million.

I am worried that the septic system, burdened with even more students, will fail. If it did, the school union would have to close down both the middle school and the high school. The school union would have to bid out a new sewer line from downtown Mechanic Falls to the school complex. In the short term, it would have to come up with a way to handle the effluent, perhaps with a holding tank that would need to be pumped out frequently. Taxpayers would be committed to paying the monthly and annual costs of any stop-gap measure, plus the cost of a new sewer-line bond, all without having any opportunity to vote.

Robert Spencer, Auburn

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