Annual Report 2000

Wastewater Planning Committee

Sharon M. Jones, Chair


  • Joel R. Bohy
  • Elissa J. Brown
  • Jeffrey L. Eberle
  • Charles W Haldeman
  • Johanna M. Hunter
  • Judith K. Sprott
  • Michael J. Webster

Comprehensive Wastewater Management Planning

The Wastewater Planning Committee is an ad hoc committee, formed in November, 1999, and appointed by the town Manager to represent the boards, committees, and commissions that have responsibilities affected by wastewater management, as well as to represent the White Pond and Elm Brook areas and the town-at-large. The Committee, staff from Public Works, Planning and Land Management, and Health and Inspections, as well as 2 consultant companies, have begun the process of developing a Comprehensive Wastewater Management Plan (CWMP) for the Town of Concord's current and future wastewater needs. The general charge of the Committee is to provide guidance and advice in the development of this plan, with funding from the Sewer Enterprise Fund. The consultants' reports and other data are available for review in the public libraries, the Town House, and the CPW Office. Information is also available at the Town's website.

The initial phase of the planning process included a town-wide evaluation of current wastewater conditions and issues. In this phase, the consultants gathered all the relevant data about Concord from town records, including the Board of Health, Planning and Land Management, the Assessors, Public Works, and the Geographical Information System, and the results of a town-wide survey asking property owners for information about their wastewater systems. The consultants were responsible for pulling together, assessing, and organizing all this data in order to identify probable future wastewater needs for every parcel in Concord. The data showed that there are 6,598 parcels in Concord of which 5,557 are developed. Of these 5,557 developed parcels, 1,721 are sewered and 3,849 have on-site wastewater systems. Of the 3,849 parcels that have on-site systems, 934 parcels have systems that are likely to have problems, and 437 of these problem systems will require an offsite solution, either now or in the foreseeable future. The consultants have carried out a preliminary engineering analysis of the data to determine possible solutions for these problem parcels, and they have drafted 2, potential scenarios including cost estimates and possible financing plans for each of the two scenarios.

The Committee has held 14 working meetings and seven outreach meetings, both town-wide and with the Elm Brook and White Pond areas, where wastewater management concerns are high.

With this initial phase completed, the Committee has begun the critically important process of working more directly with the other boards, committees, and commissions that are an integral part of making a CWMP work optimally for the town. It will also be necessary to get additional consulting services for several areas of town where the preliminary engineering analysis produced inconclusive results. The Committee will also be working to identify and evaluate options for financing the cost of implementing the CWMP. The Committee will continue to bring the developing wastewater management plan to the attention of Concord residents through public meetings and other strategies.