Bizarre situation in OH and need help

I have a park south of Youngstown that is tied into the Village sewer system. I own the in-park sewers. There are a bunch of houses above me with failing septic systems and the previous owner allowed the town to tie a home into the park’s sewers rather than installing a municipal sewer line down a nearby municipal easement. I show up last year and find that the town has tied in another home to my sewer without my permission. More of these tie-ins will come in the future.

Just to be clear, the Village government is attaching private homes to my sewer line (without my permission) and running the waste through my park to the trunk line in the adjacent highway. They do plow my roads in the winter, but my goal is to end the arrangement.

We are Village and I are talking and I have a meeting with the council next month. I’ve made it clear to the city manager that this situation must end and I wish to avoid litigation. Either they take over my sewer system or they install their own line down to the highway and bypass my park completely.

I need professional help at this point. Perhaps a lawyer who has experience in such matters or a professional who can act as a consultant in such matters. I have a feeling that the council will take advantage of me if I have no-one looking out for my interests. I foresee a need to guide me and then review any agreement we come to, but not litigate.

Can any park owners recommend someone? I’m not sure such a person even has to be in OH to be of assistance, although this would be better.

Let me know if any of the above is not clear.



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I’m no attorney, but to me the key question is if you do or do not have the right to turn their sewage off. If they are your lines, then you should have the right to terminate them if you see fit. So the city has to either adopt them as their own or acknowledge that you have control and can charge these additional people for the access to the city sewer through your private lines. What they’ve done is to effectively create an easement without paying you for it.

At the same time, if you give these lines to the city, you have to make sure that they do not screw you over later by claiming that you have mobile homes on top of their lines and that you need to move the mobile homes, or similar harassment.

I live in a small town and generally the theme is that you all work together because everyone acknowledges that all paths in life run both directions and that litigation doesn’t help anyone except lawyers. What if you reached a win/win agreement where the lines remain yours but they agree to fix them if anything breaks? That leaves them as your property without official easement, but gets what you really want which is to stave off repair and maintenance cost.

Just my initial thought.


I would absolutely reach out to a local hometown municipal attorney. Interview a few of them if possible before making a hire. No one else is going to be able to negotiate on your behalf as well as them, and the city will be forced to take you seriously.

I definitely agree with what Frank said. The goal should be to work together here. If the city wants to tap into your sewer system, I’d try my best to find a way to work with them on it rather than fight them. (ex, ask that they compensate me fairly for the issue, vs me threatening to cut the neighbor’s line off if they don’t give me everything I want).

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Interesting what the former owner of the park agreed to or implied–at time of title insurance some mention of such would be noted??? Maybe your problem is with seller!!

Ditto this. But, you don’t want to get in to a “how much was it worth” kind of thing.

You might see what the City proposes – perhaps giving an easement would be beneficial (provided they maintain the lines). There’s probably a “tap fee” the city charges for the new homeowners to route (through you) into the City sewer. Who’s getting that and should you get a cut of it and/or be able to?

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Not 100 pct on this but look up John Monroe or google Lodi Supreme Court mobile home park. I believe he won a big case in Ohio against the city.

Dont think you’re going to need an attorney. Now that the village knows that you know about the line tapping they will be very accommodating at the council meeting. Let them maintain it for using it.

Rolf, another issue there is the flow capacity of your sewer lines. I suppose your system was designed with the maximum disposed water flow the number of homes the park has, or were planned. At least with the regulations at the time the park was developed.

Review this with the city professionals, in order to not overflow the system.

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Do your lines run under your roads?
Where are they tapping into the lines?
Are you getting billed by the city for anything?

Maybe there is an arrangement where you gift the lines to the city and you get free services such as water or trash in perpetuity. Big ask, don’t try to ruffle feathers, but with budgets running tight and politicians generally concerned with the short term, that would be the cheaper & quicker option for them.