JAY — Now that a $30 million bond question to improve wastewater infrastructures was passed by Maine voters, Sewer Superintendent Mark Holt can move forward on having a median income survey done.

The majority of selectpersons voted in October to spend up to $30,000 to have an income study conducted of residents on the town’s sewer system, if the state bond question passed Nov. 7.

The survey will be done in an attempt to get grant funding to offset the $3.9 million sewer conversion to a pump station and force main. The project would allow the town to send sewage from North Jay to be treated at the Livermore Falls Wastewater Treatment Plant and to abandon the use of Jay’s plant. 

To qualify for grant funds, an income survey needs to be conducted. Jay’s median household income exceeds the criteria by $400 to be eligible for grant funding, Holt told selectpersons Oct. 22.

A survey of the sewer users would likely result in a lower median household income, he said then. 

Maine Rural Water Association has estimated the cost to conduct a survey at a maximum of $30,000. 

The median income survey would include an estimated 1,200 equivalent dwelling units on the town’s sewer system. The last time sewer units were counted, the number was 1,130, Holt had said. 

The survey must be done in January or February. It would include surveys being mailed out and door-to-door surveys.

The town stands to get between $100,000 and $200,000 in grant funds, according to Holt.

The estimated $30,000 to conduct the survey would be included in the $3.9 million project.

Holt said he believes the grant money that would be gained would far exceed the cost of the survey.

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