The sewage utility overhaul in Loyalsock Township just got a little more expensive.
Mandated by the state Department of Environmental Protection, the project will cost the township $36,700 more, according to estimates given Tuesday by Bill Burdett, township manager.
Larson Design Group assisted with the original plans, but the DEP decided that $73,400 more work was necessary. The state will refund the township half this amount, which accounts for the bottom line price given by Burdett.
"There was just a lot more once we got into this," he said of the plan review.
Burdett specified four more aspects of the Tributary Communities Act 537 plan that the township must pay for.
Over $17,000 is needed for environmental clearance assessment of all sites where construction is planned. Nearly $11,000 is necessary for archaeological studies, $1,000-plus is outlined for draft paperwork and about $8,500 is earmarked for additional services, including meeting attendance and responding to public comments.
Two residents spoke at Tuesday's meeting about the $3.8 million-plus project to reduce sewage system leakage.
"I can't imagine that all the townships in the Susquehanna Basin are going to have to replace their laterals," David Nagel of Strafford Road said.
The township has one of the oldest sewer systems in the area, according to supervisors Chairman William C. Reighard. The old equipment doesn't always work properly, as he said, "The state said, 'Get the infiltration out.'"
A lot of this infiltration is coming from laterals, according to Reighard.
Some existing laterals may not require replacement, but Burdett said each home will receive an inspection to prove this.
New construction will require 6-inch, PVC plastic laterals to be installed.
Tim Thompson of 1060 Canterbury Road asked what a homeowner with a 4-inch, terra cotta lateral has to do.
If there's no leakage, such a homeowner may be able to install stand pipes to support and keep their existing lateral, according to Reighard. But he also said that inspections will determine this on a case-by-case basis.
This may be rare, as research has proved to the township that almost all terra cotta laterals leak. Even some existing plastic laterals may need replaced.
"PVC is not a forever thing," said Supervisor Donald L. Garver. "That's why we need check-outs."