Frequently Asked Questions
Q: If I sign up for Reclamator Service, will I have to hook up to the sewer?
A: No, a private utility easement is deeded to AES which deems AES the permanently responsible party for all discharges within the homeowner’s property. Like a municipality, once the “discharge” crosses your property line into the public domain, the public entity, like a municipality, then becomes the responsible party. Think of the RECLAMATOR™Service as the electric company, Gas Company, or any other utility. The Homeowner is not liable for what happens in a dedicated utility easement, hence the purpose for the easement. Upon subscribing for your RECLAMATOR™Service, you are indemnified and FREE of all liabilities associated with your discharge. AES assumes 100% liability from that day forward.
Q: Will I still have to pay fines?
A: No, once you take a “definitive action” to cease your discharge, you are no longer subject to penalties for violation.
Q: What if the County makes me hookup to the sewer anyway?
A: Once you subscribe for the RECLAMATOR™Service, you no longer are subject to additional County assessments or fines as you no longer have any liability. Your discharge is within the dedicated utility easement of AES. If anyone had to hookup to the sewer, it would be AES, not you. If the County made AES hookup, they would be obligated to PAY AES for your reclaimed water. They can’t charge sewer fees and pay for your reclaimed water at the same time. Without being able to charge you for sewer, the County can’t pay to build a sewer.
Q: Will I still be assessed to pay for the county sewer?
A: You have already been assessed a 1st assessment for $25,000. That assessment must be used to comply with federal “pretreatment requirements” and pay for the RECLAMATOR™Service. After you have the RECLAMATOR™Service, there’s no need for additional assessments to pay for a County sewer collection system as 1) there’s no longer “sewage” to collect from your property, and 2) your property is no longer liable for “discharge”, only the AES utility easement.
Q: Why wouldn’t I just wait until someone makes me put in the RECLAMATOR™Service?
A: The State has already issued Cease and Desist Orders followed by Notices of Violation to all properties in the Prohibition Zone. They have already said they are going to fine homeowners $5,000 per day by 2011 if their discharge has not been stopped.
Q: Besides a manner of compliance, what advantages are there for me doing it now compared to in a couple of years?
A: Cost and completion. The project will take approximately 2 years at best. 2011 is only 2 ½ years away. By waiting, the cost will only increase as it is scheduled to increase by $5,000 August 1st. Currently, AES is offering a program where the first 333 customers to sign up will receive a 100% rebate upon the 2008th customer signing up.
Q: Why was the State and County so resistant to approving the RECLAMATOR™Service?
A: Three (3) main reasons. The local governments have come to rely on water and sewer project revenues to support themselves. Supporting the RECLAMATOR™Service represented them losing out on 1) a $250 million dollar plus County sewer project, 2) around $500 thousand dollars per month revenue from monthly sewer user fees and 3) the ability to gain control of your water to reclaim and resale it for their own economic benefits. The RECLAMATOR™Service enables you to be self sustainable, maintain control of your own water for your own beneficial reuse applications and economic benefits.
Q: Is the Reclamator approved by the County, State and Federal Government?
A: Yes. It is the ONLY federally compliant, county permitted and approved alternative to the County sewer.
Q: How much will it cost?
A: The Service Establishment Cost of the Compliance Model is $20,000 installed plus a $44.88 Minimum Monthly Service Fee, the Conservation Model is $25,000 installed plus a $67.32 Minimum Monthly Service Fee. For the first 333 customers to sign up, AES is paying $5,000 of the Service Establishment Cost for either option selected. The sewer would cost upwards of $100,000 per household before it would have been completed and does not qualify for federal grant assistance.
Q: How long does installation take?
A: A typical installation will only take 2 to 3 days. Our installers will be certified and specialize in onsite applications.
Q: Does the RECLAMATOR™Service conserve water?
A: Yes, the average household uses approximately 200 gallons per day. Using the water saved by the RECLAMATOR™Service to flush your toilets alone would save an average of 50% or 100 gallons of your daily household water usage. Imagine our Community conserving almost one million gallons of drinking water a day in this time of drought!
Q: Is the RECLAMATOR™Service working anywhere else?
A: Yes, in Los Osos it is operating at 1408 Las Encinas, come see for yourself. Over one hundred projects using the RECLAMATOR™Service technology have been working for 20 years.
Q: Who maintains it once it is installed?
A: AES in partnership with the National Sanitation Foundation will monitor the equipment via internet with bi-annual site inspections. Just like the gas or electric utility companies, AES maintains their service to your home, you never have to worry about it.
Q: What happens to the solids?
A: They are removed (like a septic tank) and reclaimed on an average of every five years. Actual frequency depends on individual usage, i.e. garbage disposal, persons in home, etc. The cost for removal is billed over a 6 month period.
Q: Is financing available?
A: Yes. Five local branches, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Rabobank America, Coast National and Heritage Oaks have all committed to provide very affordable and competitive financing for RECLAMATOR™Service customers. A list of contact persons of each bank is available from AES upon request.
Q: Is grant money available to offset the cost?
A: Yes. Upon start of the project an application will be made for federal grant assistance to pay, at a minimum, 75% of the costs incurred establishing the RECLAMATOR™Service in Los Osos. This normally takes a couple of years to acquire. Upon it being issued, you will be directly reimbursed moneys you have spent for Service Establishment up to that 75%.
Q: What do I do to subscribe for the RECLAMATOR™Service?
A: Call 439-0510 for an appointment. An AES Authorized Customer Service Representative will visit you at your residence. The AES Rep will inspect your yard and assist you to complete your RECLAMATOR™Service Subscription Agreement.
Q: How long will it be after I sign up before I have RECLAMATOR™Service?
A: Initially within 30 days. As the project gains momentum, it will be in the 60-90 day range.
Q: Who will I make my down payment check out to?
A: First American Title. First American Title will open and administer the escrow account on your project for AES until your RECLAMATOR™Service is established.