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Stormwater municipal agreement given positive recommendation

City Council’s public works committee set the stage with a positive recommendation on an agreement to jointly create a stormwater authority with the Williamsport Municipal Water and Sanitary Authority.

It is the first step toward the parties working toward an intergovernmental cooperative agreement, according to Adam Winder, general manager of the streets and parks department. Michael Miller, authority executive director, also worked on the agreement terms.

It could take up to five years of working together to form an authority, which then would assess fees from residential, commercial, industrial and non-profit customers.

“It is really too bad but it is a good plan going forward,” said Councilman Joel Henderson of the need for such a long delay.

The authority is expected to take a vote on the issue today.

Councilman Don Noviello said he would like to see more specifics in the agreement.

Another factor in what happens at the authority lies with Mayor-elect Derek Slaughter. He has the role of appointing and reappointing authority members.

A review of the proposal to date by Austin White, assistant city solicitor, suggested further discussion and benefits for the city to lease the pipe collection system to the stormwater authority.

It is not clear what the condition of the system– some of which was built 150 years ago — is.

“You can’t buy it because you don’t know what the condition of it is,” Winder said.

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