WILTON — The Select Board is considering a three-phase increase to the town’s sewer rates following an update from Town Manager Perry Ellsworth at the Tuesday, Aug. 16, meeting.

Ellsworth told the board he has spoken with Water and Wastewater Superintendent Heinz Grossman and the rate increase is workable.

Grossman told the board at the Aug. 2 meeting the increase of rates is needed due to increased costs of sludge disposal due to recent PFAS legislation and the ability to qualify for larger grants to fund the water-transmission-line replacement project.

Previously, Grossman was advocating for the board to increase sewer rates by around 30% in one fell swoop in order to qualify for more grants that would fund the water-transmission line and reduce the town’s debt.

Select Board Chair David Leavitt and Selectperson Tiffany Maiuri had advocated for staggering the increases in order to lighten the load on payers.

“I’d rather eat the pie one slice at a time rather than all at once,” Leavitt had said. “[It would be better] if we can do a smaller rate increase for payers, even if it’s staggered.”


But Grossman said one large increase would help the town qualify for grants from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (SRF) administered by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services and Maine Municipal Bond Bank to offset the costs of that loan.

Ellsworth returned to the board Tuesday with the update that there can be “incremental increases,” as requested, with two 10% increases and one increase still to be determined.

Ellsworth also told the board that federal funding is coming to Maine taxpayers in order to help them catch up on overdue sewer and water bills.

Hopefully, he said, Wilton can get some of the $4.7 million funds coming to Maine.

“Maybe we can help some people get through this crisis of inflation and raised rates and what not,” he said.

In other business, Ellsworth told the board that after his first week taking the reins at the town office, “things are starting to fall into place.”


He’s still learning, there are noticeable differences from his other jobs, he said.

However, Ellsworth said “I’m loving it, I appreciate that people have stopped to see me.”

“We, the entire staff, want to provide you with the best product that we can, and we want to make your life easier,” Ellsworth said. “There are some changes that you may say that are different … I’m just asking you to work through me with anything you want. You can ask any question you want.

“But I like it here.”

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