Residents with low water pressure want Hampstead to annex properties; Sunset Drive needs town's system, they say


More than a dozen homeowners along Sunset Drive outside Hampstead want the town to annex their properties so they can have public water.

Since August, several homeowners have experienced water-pressure problems, and some fear their water supply may suddenly dry up. Residents presented an informal petition for annexation to the Town Council last week.

Mayor Christopher M. Nevin said last week that town officials would do whatever they could to help the homeowners, who rely on wells for water.

Martha Muhles and Joan Davidson, who have lived on Sunset Drive for more than 30 years, said last week the problems began in August and have worsened.

"At times, we're getting a flow of only a half-gallon per minute," Muhles said. "On Christmas Day, we completely lost our water three times. Fortunately, my husband and son were able to go to the basement and get the pump going again."

For neighbor Joan Davidson, flow at the kitchen sink is reduced to a trickle if another appliance, such as the washing machine, is drawing water simultaneously.

"You can't do two things at once, such as wash and flush," she said.

Muhles said she has approached 24 homeowners on Sunset Drive, asking if they have water problems and if they would sign a petition for annexation.

"We got 15 signatures, and nine wouldn't sign," she said.

Some who signed are not having problems now, but favor annexation because they believe they may eventually need town water, Muhles said. Some who didn't sign the petition want to see what annexation will cost them.

Davidson said the group will likely form a committee and decide on a plan.

"If we decide to go ahead, we have to gather the information the town needs and hire an attorney and a surveyor," Davidson said.

A common concern, as yet unanswered, is the cost of connecting their homes to the town system. Muhles said homeowners would seek estimates before making a formal petition for annexation.

Some blame water problems on drought, Muhles said. Others think wells drilled for nearby new homes have put too heavy a demand on the supply.

Pub Date: 2/16/99

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