Letting your SLIP show can cost you $10,000-15,000? The city of Santa Barbara is playing a game of Russian Roulette with property owners through the Sewer Lateral Inspection Program (SLIP). These are the pipes running under the ground to the road where the connection from your property meets the city sewer line right in the middle of the street. In Santa Barbara, the city conveniently transfers the cost of maintenance straight to property owners. You heard correctly. The city owns the asphalt, and property owners are responsible for their property and under the asphalt straight to the sewer line. What would happen if there were gold or oil under the asphalt? Maybe they are intending to extend property lines to the middle of the street as well, since they have been giving public streets away to developers to expand their projects. But we digress. By contrast, the city of Goleta owns and is taking responsibility for their sewer lateral. Rumor has it that Santa Barbara’s overly aggressive new auger is damaging your laterals, which can be 30, 40 or more than 50 years old. With the spin of the barrel and a flick of the trigger, a letter from the city might be heading your way. If you get one, you have 45 days to get a video of the pipes. Then you sit with an inspector to watch those family films, and he then gives you 90 days to get it repaired at your expense. And you will need a permit. And you will be given a list of city-suggested plumbers.
Wasn’t Measure C designed to repair roads and complete maintenance on infrastructure? Bring your plunger and checkbook to the Gephardt Room at 630 Garden St. at 9 a.m., July 18, for the Water Commission meeting. Get ready to have your pipes cleaned. Or you can call Dale Escobar, SLIP Project Coordinator, at 568-1032.