D. PUBLIC FACILITIES AND SERVICES
The Town of Sebago does not have a public water supply system. Individual groundwater wells or lake water provide most of the town's potable water. Sebago Lake serves as a water supply for the City of Portland, under the management of the Portland Water District.
Residents of Sebago appear satisfied with having individual homes and businesses provide their own water. The only circumstance under which a majority would support creation of a public water system would be if there was a clear threat to public health. 66% of these surveyed characterized the quality of their drinking water as "excellent" or "good": however, nearly half of respondents had never had their water tested. Quality problems that do not affect the taste or appearance of the water could be present or could develop, but not be detected by the homeowner.
There is no public sewerage in Sebago. On-site septic systems are the most common method of disposing of sanitary waste. Septage that is pumped from these systems is hauled by private septage contractors to the Portland area, where it is disposed of in the Portland Water District sewer system. This arrangement has been approved by the State of Maine and the Portland Water District, to avoid dumping septage within the Sebago Lake watershed.
A majority of residents who responded to the survey do not support public sewerage under any circumstances. On the larger lots typically found inland, it is usually possible to build and maintain a septic system that complies with the current state sanitary code. On the smaller lake front lots, however, alternatives to standard septic systems (such as holding tanks) may be necessary in the future to protect the quality of surface water and drinking water. In all cases, careful positioning of wells and septic systems is essential to prevent cross-contamination.
The Town's solid waste transfer station is located on fifty acres of land off the Long Hill Road, at the former Town landfill site. The estimated capacity of the transfer station is 1200 tons per year, although currently, only about 850 tons are being disposed. The Town has entered into a contract with Pine Tree Waste for transportation and disposal of municipal solid waste and recyclables. The contract for municipal solid waste disposal is for fifteen years, and the agreement for the handling of recyclables is for five years. Currently, newspapers, office paper, mixed paper, magazines, paperboard, glass, plastics, aluminum, and tin cans are collected at the transfer station to transport to a recycling facility. Demolition and construction debris is collected at the site, and
metals are collected and recycled. Newspapers, cardboard, glass, aluminum, and cans are recycled voluntarily. The Town does not provide trash pick-up; individual homeowners generally bring their household trash to the transfer station. Some contract with local collectors to pick up their trash.
The Town has a Solid Waste Disposal Ordinance (03-01)which was adopted in June of 2002.
Police protection in Sebago is provided by the Cumberland County Sheriffs Department and the Maine State Police. The nearest Sheriff sub-station is located in Naples.
Both the Fire Department and Rescue Unit are staffed by volunteers and funded primarily by the Town. The three fire stations are located in Sebago Center, East Sebago, and North Sebago.
Residents are very satisfied with the quality of their volunteer Fire and Rescue services, with over 95% rating them "excellent" or "adequate". (This survey was conducted in 1989)
There is significant dissatisfaction with police protection, with 40% of respondents rating it "poor" and only 8% calling it "excellent". This may be related to the fact that there is no permanent, visible police presence in the Town, as represented by a Sheriffs station.
Most structures in Sebago are heated by oil, propane gas, electric or wood. Natural gas service is not available. Electric service is through the Central Maine Power Company. No large electric or gas transmission lines pass through the town.
The Standish Telephone Company provides local telephone service. The closest daily newspaper is the Portland Press Herald; the Bridgton News and Windham Courier Free Press are nearby weekly papers. Major television channels include ABC, CBS, and NBC. Cable TV currently is available to some residents in Sebago. Adelphia Cable Company provides cable service. This company recently purchased land on Long Hill Road in order to relocate and expand its facility. The current franchise agreement expires in 2015. Internet access is also available through “Pivot.net.”
East and North Sebago post offices combined into one, so that there is now one postal district in Sebago, with a zip code of 04029. This post office building was expanded by 2500 square feet. Planning Board approval was obtained in late 2000, with construction completed in 2001.
The Bridgton Memorial Hospital in Bridgton is the nearest health care center. Other regional hospitals include Mercy Hospital and the Maine Medical Center in Portland. There currently are no physicians with offices in Sebago.
The lack of a local doctor or clinic has a negative impact on the availability of health care to residents. Those who are ill or seeking preventive care must travel to another town to get treatment. In some cases, this obstacle may result in people postponing medical care.
A discussion of cultural resources is found in Section I of this chapter.
Sebago belongs to School Administrative District (SAD) Number 61, which also includes the towns of Bridgton, Casco and Naples. All elementary students (K-6) attend the Sebago Elementary School in East Sebago, with the exception of a few students who are assigned to special programs in other towns. Junior high school students attend the lakes Region Junior School, and high school students go to the Lakes Region High School, both in Naples. Table A-5 contains information concerning the town’s financial contribution to SAD #61.
A discussion of recreational resources can be found in Section I of this chapter.
The Town of Sebago does have a public cemetery, and plots are available at the Town Office. There are also a number of private cemeteries in town, but they have no unclaimed plots.