I own a house in St. Paul MN. There is a problem in the sewer pipe line in the middle of the street, in the part of the pipe that is connecting to the main line. The problem is located outside my property, but the City of St. Paul is claiming that they repair only the mainline, and the the entire pipe, even the part that is in public area, is the responsibility of the homeowner.
The city sewer official that I talked to on the phone quoted this paragraph to me when I demanded to see where does it say that the homeowner is responsible to repair outside his property:
"Private Sewer Connection: A private sewer connection extends from the foundation or upstream end within the private property to and including its connection to the public sewer or other outlet. It is also known as a house sewer connection, sewer lateral or sewer service connection." (page 3)
The definition in the same document to Public Sewer: "A sanitary or storm sewer in which all owners of abutting properties have equal rights to and which is owned and controlled by the City of St. Paul. A public sewer generally has more than one private service connected to it." (page 3)
Quotes taken from this document:
City of St. Paul Department of Public Works Standard Specifications for Constructing and Repairing Private Sewer Connections" September 20, 2012
Can be found on line: http://www.stpaul.gov/DocumentCenter/View/60095
My question:The document says that my responsibility as a homeowner is to the line that starts at my foundation and goes to the CONNECTION TO THE PUBLIC SEWER. My interpretation is that any part of the sewer system that is not in my property is part of the PUBLIC SEWER. The city claims that the pipes outside my property are my responsibility because the PUBLIC SEWER is only the mainline.
Can I have a case against the city, in demanding that they pay for repairing the problem in the pipe outside my property? If so, how do I go about it?
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX