Unity supervisors reject Adelphoi USA’s sewage plan for independent living home
Unity supervisors denied a plan to handle sewage at an independent living home for up to 15 people proposed by Adelphoi USA.
The township zoning hearing board approved the use for the 10-bedroom, three-bathroom building at 431 Saxman Road, but supervisors Thursday unanimously denied a plan that would include a temporary 5,000-gallon tank for sewage.
Supervisor Mike O’Barto said that not only did he disagree with the plan, he wanted to recognize the concerns of residents in June.
“If I can give some people out on Saxman Road a voice, I’m going to give it to them,” he said.
The building’s system could not handle the capacity necessary to operate and the tank would need to be pumped every several days, said township Solicitor Gary Falatovich.
Public sewage is not accessible in that area of the township.
The plan for the holding tank was approved by the state Department of Environmental Protection and Emil Bove, the township’s sewage enforcement officer.
In the meantime, Adelphoi USA has a design waiting for approval that would include a small flow treatment facility estimated to cost between $30,000 and $50,000 as a permanent solution, but needed the holding tank agreement approved first, Falatovich said.
The temporary measure would have allowed the holding tank on-site for two years, he said.
“My understanding is that the DEP will not accept an application for the construction of a permanent facility unless this holding tank” is allowed on the property, Falatovich told supervisors.
The building would house male residents between the ages of 16 and 20 who are able to attend school and work, but they would be transported and monitored by two to three staff members at all times.
The facility is planned to replace an independent living home in downtown Greensburg, one of three operated by Adelphoi, which oversees 21 facilities across Pennsylvania.
Falatovich said any further action will be determined by Adelphoi and the property owner.
In other business, supervisors approved a preliminary 2015 budget with no tax increase.
The budget will be balanced at $5.9 million, including $684,440 from the state including liquid fuels funding and a portion of the Act 13 natural gas impact funding.
O’Barto said the state allotment increased by about $40,000 while the budget total is about $18,000 lower than last year.
The 2015 budget includes purchase of a new front-end loader for $180,000 and an 2015 International dump truck for about $170,000 to replace a 1991 vehicle, one of 16 trucks in the township’s fleet.
“We’re going to get rid of one of the last dinosaurs that we have,” O’Barto said.
A new senior citizen tax rebate was budgeted at $42,000 last year, but that number was decreased to $20,000 for 2015 to adjust for participation after the first year.
The rebate allows qualified low-income residents 65 and older to receive a break on property taxes.
“We’re hoping as Unity Township ages, more people will be able to participate in the refund process,” O’Barto said, adding he was unsure of the final number of residents who participated in 2014.
Stacey Federoff is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6660 or [email protected].