Winfield delays vote on revised sewerage plan
WINFIELD: The new board of supervisors will have a daunting task in January: deciding what should be included in the proposed Act 537 sewerage plan.
Supervisors Glenn Nagle, Matthew Cypher and Gerald Frazak announced at Thursday night’s meeting that they would not vote this year on the comprehensive sewerage plan, which would establish a sewage treatment plant for Cabot and Marwood residents but would change little elsewhere in the township.
Cypher and Frazak were not re-elected. Two new supervisors, Flo Allison and Michael Robb, will join Nagle next year.
Residents have urged supervisors to delay voting on the plan, largely because Nagle, Frazak and Cypher have voiced support for it as proposed, while many residents oppose portions of it.
Few objected to the treatment plant, but many are concerned that mentioning a voluntary pumping and inspection program for remaining residents would attract unwanted attention from the state Department of Environmental Protection, which must approve the Act 537 plan before the township can implement it.
Residents said they fear the plan could open the door for state sanctions and inspections, and wanted the section addressing the voluntary component deleted.
However, Nagle last month said the plan must address sewage treatment plans for the entire township, even the private septic tanks used by most residents.
“It has to be in there to say what happens to the rest of the township,” Nagle said. “And that’s nothing. We’re not changing anything.”
At the October meeting, residents urged supervisors to delay approval, saying they weren’t given an opportunity to review the plan. They also objected to Frazak and Cypher voting after admitting they hadn’t read the revised version of the lengthy document.
Nagle on Thursday said after conferring with township engineering firm Malcolm Pirnie and Solicitor Mike Hnath, he does not believe supervisors violated the Sunshine Law and gave residents ample time to review the plan.
However, he said to make certain residents have an opportunity to see the final version, it will be on review the entire month of December.
Supervisors then could act on the plan as soon as the Jan. 5 reorganization meeting or at the regular township meeting on Jan. 22.
Scattered applause sounded from the packed audience after Nagle announced supervisors would not be voting on the plan Thursday.
Review the Act 537 plan
The proposed Act 537 sewerage plan will be available for review at the township office throughout December.
For details, call the office at 724-352-3333.