City council continues to lease land in Lemitar

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Socorro City Councilors approved the publication of an ordinance for the wastewater project that would make it easier to send waste to an off-site plant.

City Clerk Pat Salome said homes in the southeast portion of town have septic tanks and no sewer lines to take waste to the treatment plant. The ordinance is to provide tanks with sewer lines that will take the waste off site to the plant.

Replacement tanks/hook up will cost a resident $250 specific to the area after the project is finished. It’s not mandatory for residents, but the cost escalates after the first year.

Residents who have septic tanks with access should do it as soon as possible, Salome said. A public hearing will be held on July 23, and the council will vote on the measure soon after. Councilors also unanimously voted to let a local business owner continue making payments on a land purchase. According to Salome, the city purchased 35 acres of land in Lemitar 20 years ago. The land was going to be used as a transfer station to take solid waste to the dump in Albuquerque.

However, the city decided it didn’t need the land as a transfer station and leased four acres to Shane Durkin, owner of Durkin Diesel, five years ago.

The city still owns 30 acres of the land, and Durkin is currently making payments of $15,000 a year, for up to 20 years, for the total purchase price of $235,000 for the four acres to continue his business.

“We didn’t need the land anymore, because it didn’t have a purpose,” Salome said.