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Change Longswamp Township Sewage Plan

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We the residents and property owners from Longswamp Township hereby sign this petition to enter a formal, written opposition to the Township's Official PA Act 537 Sewage Disposal Plan. As pursuant to the PA statute 750.5(b), this document shall serve as a private request to Longswamp Township to revise their official plan. The Township Board of Supervisors shall have up to 60 days to respond to this request; and advise residents in written form; as to what action or actions will be taken. We formally oppose the official plan for the following reasons:

Cost of plan to service 130 homes in the "designated high needs areas" of the Township with the two COLDS systems is cost prohibitive at $9.6 million dollars. Cost to each property owner under this plan is around $75,000.00. Then after the proposed COLDS systems are built; a $100.00 per month sewer bill per home is the estimate for usage. These above costs do not include the thousands more each property owner will need to find to disable or dismantle their current on-lot septic systems. A devastating financial burden is being forced onto property owners in all of the designated "high needs areas" by Township.

Without grants to help offset costs to property owners; many residents stand to lose their homes.

Public health safety issues regarding water quality in our wells (which is ground water) have not been identified to property owners that existing on lot sewage disposal systems are contaminating water supply. We would be more apt to believe that agricultural product runoff from area fields could be a more probable hazard to wells. The Act 537 plan would not fix that, if that were the case.

"Technical failures " of existing on-lot sewage systems, with zero actual system failures ( as in Shamrock Station, per Township Sewer Enforcement Officer) does not demonstrate an imminent need. Especially without a way to pay for such an expensive plan. The Township's Sewage Cycle Pumping Ordinance is still in effect. Many municipalities adhere to similar ordinances, sucessfully for many years, Maxatawny as an example.

If costs for the official plan cannot be significantly mitigated by grants, and/or built at a reasonable cost by another contractor, to lower the burden to property owners; we request that Township Officials go back to PA DEP. Inform them that the Township and its property owners cannot financially implement the plan as it is. Township cannot afford to have whole neighborhoods abandoned. Property owners are the tax base in Township. Request and revise the plan to PA DEP that at 30 percent of actual failures is when plans to build infrastructure, (COLDS systems, and other proposed "sewage disposal solutions") will be implemented. That was the position of the Township in 2015. IF and WHEN existing systems fail, at 30 percent.

Time on the 5 year PA DEP clock is ticking away. We have about three years left. Not much is known. What we do know is this plan cannot be implemented as it is. The existing plans are not feasible. There is not enough money, nor enough time.

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