JERSEY SHORE - An official groundbreaking for a sewage treatment plant was greeted Wednesday by community leaders and others who helped make it happen as a big day for this borough and surrounding municipalities.
"Today is not the end, just the next step forward," said Tiadaghton Valley Municipal Authority Chairwoman Cheryl Brungard.
Brungard, surrounded by colleagues, project engineers and public officials near the site of the plant in Antes Fort, briefly summarized how the plant came to fruition.
Tiadaghton Valley Municipal Authority board member, Rod Chambers, turns over a little soil as board members Cheryl Brunhgard, left, Wade Snyder, second left, David Keister, second right, and Shawn Lorson look on during a ground breaking for the authority’s new waste water treatment plant in Antes Fort Wednesday.
Chesapeake Bay initiatives for upgrading the municipal sewage treatment systems, she said, pushed the need to form an authority and build a new plant to serve the borough as well as Porter and Nippenose townships.
"We wanted to treat waste water like a business," she said.
She conceded that initially the prospect of financing the project seemed "scary."
Ultimately, 36 percent of plant funding, she noted, is being financed through grants.
"It's a very exciting day for our community," said Jersey Shore Borough Councilman and authority member Wade Snyder.
Snyder was among municipal leaders who put in many hours helping to plan for the plant located on the Cameron farm property near the Susquehanna River.
Authority member and Porter Township resident David Keister thanked PennVest, which came through with funding in the way of a $3.7 million grant and a $14.1 million low-interest loan.
Josh Owens, senior project designer, Larson Design Group, said plant construction, which began about two weeks ago, should take about 15 months.
It will involve, he said, drilling a bore beneath the Susquehanna River and building a new pump station.
That will allow for the transfer of sewage across the river to the Antes Fort site.
Brungard credited the three communities with working together on the project as well as Lycoming County commissioners and Larson Design Group.