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The Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority's (PENNVEST) Board of Directors approved $29.5 million in low-interest loans and $3.7 million in grants to fund 17 drinking water, wastewater and storm water projects in 14 counties across the commonwealth.
The grants were targeted for three prohibitively expensive projects to bring them within the financial reach of their customers. Funding ranges from $382,000 for installation of a new fiberglass roof over an existing finished water reservoir in Cambria County, to $7,546,000 for construction of a new pumping station, storage tank, new distribution lines and other facilities, for a drinking water system in Northampton County.
The funding for the projects brings PENNVEST's total funding for community water, sewer and storm water projects to more than $3.8 billion since the program's inception.
The multiple projects' details follow:
- Beaver County - Baden Borough: $1,450,000 loan to replace over two miles of drinking water distribution lines in various areas of the Borough where existing one-hundred-year-old lines are prone to frequent breaks and leaks.
- Cambria County - Northern Cambria Municipal Authority: $382,000 loan to install a new fiberglass roof over the existing finished water reservoir to replace the old roof that collapsed, potentially exposing this drinking water source to contamination.
- Lehigh County - South Whitehall Township Authority: $481,750 loan to replace a water booster station and 3,100 linear feet of water lines to provide adequate service to an area of the Township where recent groundwater contamination forced the abandonment of private drinking water wells.
- Northampton County - Easton Suburban Water Authority: $7,546,000 loan to correct water storage and distribution problems by constructing a new pumping station, a storage tank and new distribution lines, as well as other facilities that will serve to increase system storage and pumping capacity.
- Washington County - Southwestern Pennsylvania Water Authority: $105,956 loan and $1,869,344 grant to construct almost four miles of transmission and distribution lines to serve the Village of Fairfield area, where almost three fourths of the homes were using drinking water wells that are contaminated with coliform bacteria.
- Westmoreland County - Westmoreland County Municipal Authority: $2,443,000 loan to replace almost three miles of large diameter water transmission mains in central Westmoreland County where the existing mains are subject to frequent breaks and leaks which disrupt service to private homes and local businesses. In addition, the project includes the construction of new water distribution lines in an area of Kiskiminetas Township in Armstrong County where residential drinking water supplies are contaminated by coliform bacteria.
- Berks County - Bern Township Municipal Authority: $742,265 loan to purchase wastewater treatment capacity in the Reading Regional Airport Authority sewage treatment plant, which is undergoing an upgrade. This capacity will be used to treat wastewater from homes currently using malfunctioning on-lot septic systems, some of which are contaminating local drinking water wells.
- Butler County - Butler Area Sewer Authority: $5,930,400 loan to eliminate overflows at the Deshon Pump Station that frequently occur during wet weather by either rehabilitating or replacing over seven miles of collection lines that leak and allow excess water to enter the system.
- Clearfield County - Chester Hill Borough: $1,209,071 loan and $790,929 grant to construct almost five miles of sewage collection lines, replace 85 manholes and upgrade individual lateral lines in order to eliminate the discharge of untreated sewage into publicly accessible areas that occurs during wet weather events; Clearfield Borough: $2.6 million loan and a $1 million grant to replace almost the entire sewage collection system in the Arnold Avenue and Everett Street areas of the Borough where the sanitary sewage collection system and the storm water collection system are interconnected, which results in the discharge of untreated sewage into the West Branch of the Susquehanna River during wet weather. The project involves the installation of sanitary sewer mains, the construction of 70 manholes and the connection of 275 homes to the new collection system.
- Crawford County - Cochranton Borough: $526,500 loan to design a new wastewater treatment plant, collection system and pump stations that will eliminate the use of malfunctioning on-lot septic systems and cesspools.
- Luzerne County - Greater Hazelton CANDO: $459,669 loan to construct a 120,000-gallons-per-day wastewater pump station that will provide sufficient capacity for the planned expansion of the CANDO Corporate Center, which is a major employment center in the Hazelton area; Jackson Township General Municipal Authority: $500,000 loan to replace an old station with a new pump station and associated force main. This will eliminate the discharge of untreated wastewater onto the ground and the backup of basements in local homes that occurs when the existing pump station becomes overloaded during wet weather.
- Mercer County - Farrell City: $735,000 loan to replace two pumps, 3,160 feet of collection lines and other facilities that will eliminate raw sewage discharges into publicly accessible areas that occur during wet weather.
- Montgomery County - West Conshohocken Municipal Authority: $604,000 loan to construct about half a mile of new collection lines and force main to eliminate the use of malfunctioning on-lot septic systems that are contaminating groundwater and surface water sources.
- Schuylkill County - Mahanoy City Sewer Authority: $3 million loan to rehabilitate the existing sewage treatment plant and install interceptor sewers to avoid the likely failure of this system during wet weather events.
- Berks County - Sinking Spring Borough: $740,500 loan to bore new storm water culverts under two railway lines to supplement the existing culverts which are not capable of handling storm water flows, causing the flooding of a warehouse and the fuel loading area of a petroleum tank farm.