EMMETT -- Residents of Emmett will vote on a $2 million sewer bond on Tuesday, that if passed will go to repair a facility that hasn't worked in nearly three years.
But there's more to it, the EPA is involved as well, telling the city to fix the problem or pay a fine.
Emmett has a new wastewater treatment facility but can't use it. So instead the city is using its old wastewater ponds built in the 1960s.
Every month the city uses that pond instead of its new facility it faces potential EPA fines of over $2 million.
Here's the problem.
In August of 2009, 10 months after this new wastewater treatment facility went online, there were problems that forced it to shut down. That forced the city to go back to an older, less efficient technology in the wastewater ponds.
Every day the pond spews out three million gallons of dark green, algae-filled water into the Payette River.
Every day it does that, the city violates 60 EPA regulations.
Emmett Mayor Bill Butticci says the EPA is working with the city to resolve the problem.
The deal is as long as the city is moving forward the EPA won't enforce the fines.
Butticci hopes that a $2 million bond will pass next Tuesday and pay for the repair.
"If the bond passes, that will allow us to borrow money at a lower rate, which will not increase rates," said Butticci. "If they vote 'no,' we're still going to have to make the repair, it just means that we're going to have to go find an alternate funding source to make the repair at probably a higher rate."
If the bond passes, Butticci hopes to repair the facility before this winter.
If it does not pass, the city will take a few months to secure funding, then repair the wastewater treatment facility sometime next year.