By WBZ-TV Chief Correspondent Joe Shortsleeve

MILTON (CBS) – Imagine this, you don’t get a sewer bill for 30 years even though you are hooked up to town sewer. Sound crazy? Not really, that could be the case for perhaps more than 100 homes in Milton. As Chief Correspondent Joe Shortsleeve explains, those homeowners may be asked to pay up thousands as the town tries to get some of that money back.

Milton residents are not happy.

“I think it is ridiculous. The rest of us have been paying. I don’t know how they slipped through the cracks.”

Or how about this guy.

“If they have not gotten a bill, they should get a bill. The rest of us are going to have to pay if they don’t.

Milton residents have little sympathy for about 100 homeowners who are hooked up to town sewer but haven’t paid a dime, some for as long as 35 years. The town’s Public Works Department uncovered the three million dollar secret when a realtor trying to sell a house could not find a copy of the sewer bill.

Joe Lynch is the DPW Director.

“A very quick dye test confirmed it was in fact connected to town sewer for 30 odd years, with no bill ever received,” Lynch said.

Town officials using sophisticated computer mapping programs, quickly confirmed dozens and dozens of homes were getting just water bills while their neighbors were getting water and sewer bills.

So what went wrong? Well there is no one explanation but some town leaders think it goes all the way back to the 1980’s when Proposition 2 1/2 devastated local budgets. And quite frankly, record keeping suffered.

The average sewer bill in Milton is more than $1,000 year. Milton town leaders will unveil a plan Tuesday night asking those 100 homeowners, who never got a bill, to now pay three years’ worth.

Denis Keohane is the Chairman of the Board of Selectmen.

“According to town counsel we have the right to go back six years,” said Keohane, “but one thing we don’t want to do is bankrupt anybody.”

With everyone paying their sewer bill, Milton will be getting an extra $100,000 each year. Money which they say will help stabilize sewer rates for everyone in the coming years.


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