Plumbers Invited to Meeting for Vera Cruz Sewer Project
Upper Milford Supervisors say analysis shows 85 percent of homes in Vera Cruz have malfunctioning septic systems.
The Upper Milford Supervisors announced during their meeting Thursday night that an information session has been scheduled for property owners in the Vera Cruz area regarding the construction of a public sewer system.
The information session will be held from 7-9 p.m. Jan. 27 in the Upper Milford Township building. The township and the Lehigh County Authority are hosting the information session.
In a related matter, the supervisors unanimously approved a resolution Thursday night giving “notice of contemplation of construction of the Vera Cruz Sanitary Sewer Project.”
Township officials have said a public sewer system is needed in the Vera Cruz area because failing septic systems have threatened public health and the quality of nearby Leibert Creek for many years.
An analysis based on state Department of Environmental Protection criteria has determined that nearly 85 percent of the homes in the Vera Cruz area have confirmed, suspected or potential malfunctioning septic systems.
Township Manager Dan DeLong said the Lehigh County Authority is expected to send letters to about 300 residential and commercial property owners in the Vera Cruz area, notifying them about the Jan. 27 information session.
Topics for discussion during the information session include the following: cost estimates for property owners, updated project budget and funding sources, a 2011 project schedule, and information about funding sources for private plumbing costs.
Local plumbers and other contractors have been invited to attend the session to help property owners evaluate their plumbing options. Also, Lehigh County grant program representatives will be available to meet personally with property owners who are concerned about costs.
Bids from contractors interested in installing the public sewers were opened at the Lehigh County Authority on Jan. 6, but those bids still are being analyzed by funding and regulatory agencies to determine which will be “the lowest responsive bid” – not necessarily the lowest bids.
Nine companies submitted bids for the first contract, to install piping in the right-of-way. Only one company, Environment One Corp., submitted a bid for the second contract, to supply individual pumps at each home or business and to supervise the proper installation by each property owner’s plumber.
After the bids were opened at the Lehigh County Authority, DeLong said the bids generally were at or below the estimates of a consulting engineer: $2.6 million for the first contract and $1 million for the second contract.