The Municipality of Chester will continue to work with the Village of Chester Commission concerning a central water system in Chester. We recently closed a survey that asked property owners within the Village of Chester boundary a series of extensive questions about their on-site water system. The purpose of the survey was to get more information about the existing water supply that will indicate more fully the need for a central water system.
The survey closed on April 30, and results are being reviewed and analyzed by the Public Works Department and CBCL, one of the consultants hired by the Municipality and Village of Chester Commission to conduct the needs assessment. Surveys were mailed to owners as well as available online. There were concerns raised about reaching seasonal residents; however, we used addresses from the provincial database, which is also used when we send tax bills. The same database is used by the Province to send property assessment notices. By using this database, seasonal residents were mailed the survey at their primary address, whether that is inside or outside Nova Scotia. Very few letters were returned by the Post Office with "address unknown", and we were able to reroute most of the letters that were. As both a backup and a more convenient avenue for completing the survey, it was also available online and the link advertised.
Through our consultant, we will sample selected wells throughout the Village starting the week of June 19. If your property is one of those wells, the Engineering and Public Works Department will contact you with an appointment time. The sampling program will identify baseline water quality in the Village in both residential and commercial supplies.
Next steps are to analyze and collate the data, sample selected wells, and investigate sources for a full or partial public water supply. Findings will be assembled and presented to Council in a report near the end of July. The final report will provide more conclusive information around the need, cost and feasability of a central water system in the Village. We cannot say at this time what a central water system- if any - will look like or if the desire to have or not have a system is shared by all property owners. Much will depend on the results of the assessment. After that, property owners will once again be approached to offer input on their desire for a water supply based on the findings and their opinion.