LIBERTY TOWNSHIP Tap-in order prompts lawsuit
The property owners said they were granted a variance more than 30 years ago.
By PEGGY SINKOVICH
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
WARREN -- The owners of a Liberty Township property have sued the Trumbull County Board of Health, alleging the board is forcing them to tap into a sanitary sewer line.
Jean E. Henry of Hubbard, Sally J. Gross of New Jersey and Ruth H. Ceteras of North Canton filed the lawsuit Tuesday in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court. The suit has been assigned to Judge John Stuard.
The three women, who are sisters, are owners of property at 1042 E. Liberty St.
The suit says they inherited the property in 1994 when their father, John T. Heinl, died.
The sanitary sewers were constructed in the area in 1967. In 1968, Heinl received a variance saying he did not have to connect to the sewer line, the suit states. The suit does not say who granted the variance, and the sisters' lawyer also did not have that information.
On Jan. 7, 2002, however, they received a notice from the county health department stating that they were in violation of state codes and must tap into the sewer line.
Henry is facing a misdemeanor criminal charge of failing to connect to a residential sewer line. She pleaded innocent to the charge in Girard Municipal Court and is awaiting trial.
Frank Migliozzi of the health department said he is not aware that Heinl received a variance stating he did not have to tap into the sewer line.
"No one has ever told us or showed us that a variance was granted," Migliozzi said.
Health department officials also said the property's septic system on the property is a nuisance, which the sisters say is untrue. They maintain the septic system is properly working.
The suit also notes that it would cost them about $15,000 to connect to the sewer line.