In June, the Greater Pottsville Area Sewer Authority (GPASA) in Pennsylvania will offer the public a chance to review its plan of ending the sewer hookup moratorium that has been in place for 25 years.
The Republican Herald reports that on May 27, the GPASA announced the move in its annual meeting held in the Pottsville City Hall. Timothy R. Yingling, the executive director of the GPASA, and Tom Schreffler, the GPASA’s engineer, were present at the meeting.
According to them, three of the eight municipalities GPASA serves — Pottsville, Mount Carbon, and North Manheim — must approve a resolution that would allow the authority to work on the sewer and stormwater pipes before it can move forward.
“What it does is say we’re going to take the responsibility of figuring out what the problem is and fix it on their behalf,” Yingling said. “Sewage disposal by law says that the municipalities are in charge of it.”
The plan itself is titled the “Corrective Action Plan.” Thirteen pages long, the plan can be accessed by the public in the GPASA office in the city hall.
The moratorium on sewer repair was implemented by the state in 1990 and has been in place ever since. After meeting with state officials in December, the GPASA claims the state will remove the moratorium by this year.
The plan was inspired by the hydraulic overload at two of the GPASA’s four main pump stations, including in Pottsville and Mount Carbon. Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection is requiring the authority to establish the plan in order to fix the pipes.
The plan originally called for a flow metering process of two months but was later changed due to its unfeasibility.
“It may be necessary to extend the flow metering process longer than the originally planned time frame of two months, as a result of the amount of rainfall,” according to the Corrective Action Plan. In addition, the plan calls for a “thorough review” of a study conducted by the Trenchless Resources and Consultants, Mechanicsburg in 2013. The study reviewed over 200 properties to ensure they were in compliance with the GPASA’s sewer guidelines.
One of the more popular methods of sewer pipe repair, trenchless plumbing repair, may be an option for future restoration work. This method has been around for residential homes for about 10-15 years.