Manila votes against annexation with Samoa, Samoa looks to alternative solution
SAMOA- Last Thursday the town of Manila voted against annexing with the town of Samoa. Officials said it has been an on-going topic out on the peninsula for years. In order for Samoa to move forward with housing development plans they need the creation of a Community Services District.
The plan to add around 400 new homes in Samoa has come to halt now, that is because in order for the proposed project to continue, by law, the town needs its own Community Services District, a publicly owned water system to help maintain the town's water waste.
Troy Nicolini is the Director for the Samoa Peninsula Fire Protection district and said there department is in the process of trying to become that entity, which would expand its fire services beyond its normal duties.
"It is a major transition going from being a fire department to being a community services district. We would still serve the same area we would just go from being purely fire department to providing waste water treatment, freshwater, and parks," said Nicolini.
The proposed project site would create 400 new homes, 100 of those to be affordable housing. The Samoa Pacific Group along with Danco is trying to add in the new homes but in order to accomplish that however, they need a new wastewater treatment facility.
Manila Community Services Board Member John Woolley said the board decided to reject annexing with Samoa because not enough financial data was presented to them, but added that they do support what Samoa is trying to do,
“It is really on the wastewater and treatment of the effluent that we saw significant issues that still need to be examined and have more data together," said Woolley.
Samoa runs mainly on a septic tank system, but if the new homes are built, they will need to run on a more efficient system, something similar to what the town of Manila already has in place, open water lagoons designed to receive and stabilize waterwaste.
Woolley said, “We have award winning effluent distribution system here, they discussed that briefly in their report but did not provide us the information we need to make a thorough decision."
Since Manila has decided against annexation with Samoa, the town for now will rely on the Fire District, who will bring forward their proposal to the Local Agency Formation Commission who will then either accept or reject the proposal.