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West Penn seeks extension from DEP on sewer plan

Published November 02. 2010 05:00PM

West Penn Township has had to request an extension from DEP for their sewer plan. According to township engineer Ron Madison, the township is having difficulties obtaining permission from property owners to access their properties to complete site reviews and soil testing. "Act 537 is a mandated study by DEP," said Madison. "The township must do the plan. The township must pay for the plan and when it is accepted, DEP reimburses the township for 50 percent of the plan."

Madison explained that a soil or well test does not mean that a property will be used for an on-site system, however, the township is required to review all possible options in order for DEP to accept the plan. "All alternatives have to be evaluated for feasibility and cost feasibility," he said. "In some villages, the decision might be quite obvious once we're done with the plan. In other villages, it might be close."

Ted Bogosh, the chairman of the township's sewer committee, seconded Madison's information. "We're trying to look out for the community," he said. "The committee is trying to coordinate to make it the best possible system at the best possible price." Bogosh also added that the township will be fined if they do not meet DEP's requirements. "We can't afford the fines," he said. Bogosh invited citizens to contact the committee with their concerns.

Supervisors adjourned for an executive session to discuss their legal options in the situation and when they returned, they voted to have township solicitor Gretchen Sterns send letters to the property owners advising them that the soil testing is mandated by DEP and will be completed. According to Madison, there are between eight and ten properties that need to be sampled yet. DEP has extended the deadline for this phase of the project until June 30, 2011.

Supervisors announced that they had approved a bid received from Landis C. Deck for West Penn Park East. The bid plus alternative one totaled $129,232.90.

In other business, Sterns advised supervisors that the Dekorte enforcement action is almost complete. "The property has been cleaned up and the matter should be resolved by within the week," she said. However, a neighbor of the Dekorte's said that the property is still being used improperly and asked that officials look into the number of chickens on the property, which she said are coming onto her property and disturbing her children and animals.

Supervisors gave final conditional approval to the Burdell and Dolores Troxell and Richard and Jean Troxell minor subdivision plan.

Supervisors received a letter from Edward Dudley, the chairman of the planning commission. Dudley advised supervisors that his term will expire on January 1, 2011 and asked not to be considered for reappointment. "I have enjoyed the more than 17 years that I have served on the planning commission and I have always tried to look out for the best interests of the township and its citizens," wrote Dudley. Supervisors accepted Dudley's request, however Chairman Alfonso Martinez said that they were hoping not to get the letter.

Supervisors will be holding a budget meeting on Thursday, November 11th, at 6pm.

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