New Palmerton wastewater plant to be online next week
Palmerton's new wastewater treatment plant is expected to be fully operational by next week.
Borough Manager Rodger Danielson informed borough council on Thursday that at that time, the $10 million plant will be fully online.
In October, council agreed to extend the engineers overseeing timeline of the project. Danielson said at that time the extra engineering costs would likely be capped at about $50,000, and added the money to pay for the "construction oversight" would come "from the bond issue."
In March, the borough granted its consent to allow a segment of Lower Towamensing Township to hook up to the borough's new plant, if necessary. At that time, council approved a sewage agreement with the township to accept sewage from the Weiner Trailer Court, as well as five homes along State Road, and possibly more units.
That decision came one week after the township's board of supervisors adopted the agreement. However, as part of their motion, supervisors would not sign the agreement until its Act 537 Plan was signed by the Department of Environmental Protection.
Council President Terry Costenbader previously noted the agreement would come at no extra expense to borough residents if a plant extension is required. Instead, it would come at Lower Towamensing's cost, he said.
Danielson previously said the agreement is in the event that portion of the township would require the actual hook up. The trailer court has about 60 units, with the possibility of expanding by another 30 or more, he previously said.
In September 2011, council adopted an ordinance to authorize the issuance of bonds to finance the $10 million treatment plant and related costs. The borough will borrow $10 million through a 30-year loan to pay for the new plant.
For borough residents, that meant a hike in their monthly sewer rate bills, which increased $14.50, from $33.50 to $48.
Danielson previously said the decision to borrow will result in a $60,000 savings per year over earlier bond estimates, or $1.8 million worth of savings over the life of the 30-year span.
The project got under way in May 2011, and was initially expected to take 18 months to complete.
The three SBR tanks will be constructed using the precast concrete method and are the main treatment units in the project, David Schlott, of ARRO Consulting Engineering previously said. The SBR tanks measure 42 feet by 122 feet, and are the largest tanks in the treatment plant, he said.
In August 2010, council approved the acceptance of Carbon County bond financing after county commissioners approved an interest reduction loan that will issue economic development bonds.
The bonds are available through federal stimulus money, also known as the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act.
Also on Thursday, council again heard from resident Bruce Porambo about noise complaints he still has with Dedicated Fitness, located at 450 Delaware Ave.
Porambo, a combat-disabled veteran who resides at 440 Delaware Ave., Apt. 1A, asked council whether any action was taken on his initial complaint back in October.
At that time, Porambo cited the sound of weights being slammed, free weights being dropped on the floor, and loud music at various hours of the day, among the noise complaints.
Councilwoman Holly Sell told Porambo a borough committee did meet to discuss his concern, but that it was waiting to consult with legal counsel.
In other business, council:
• On a 6-0 vote, with Councilman Richard Nothstein absent, agreed to reappoint Danielson as borough manager, secretary, streets commission; Donna McGarry, treasurer/assistant secretary; Michael Ozalas, solicitor; Keystone Consulting Engineers, Inc. General Engineer; ARRO Consulting, Inc., Sewer and Water Engineer; Duane Dellecker, code enforcement officer; and Larry Zawaly, code enforcement agent.
• Appointed Elizabeth Perschy to serve on the borough's planning commission. Her term will expire Dec. 31, 2014.
• Approved the 2012 per capita tax exoneration list.
• Approved the appointment of Berkheimer Associates to collect delinquent per capita taxes.
• Approved the revised schedule of fees from Keystone Consulting Engineers, Inc.
• Approved the renewal of the snow plowing agreement with Lower Towamensing Township.