Cecil Municipal Authority will receive $13.8 million in state funds

Brad Hundt

The Cecil Township Municipal Authority will be receiving a low-interest loan from the state to consolidate all its operations into one treatment plant.

It’s one of 15 water infrastructure projects announced Wednesday by the office of Gov. Tom Wolf. Grants and loans are also going to projects in Fayette, Armstrong and Westmoreland counties, among others. The $13.8 million loan Cecil is receiving will also allow 41 additional customers to come online in the community of Lawrence. Along with the construction of a new wastewater treatment plant, Cecil’s Teodori Sewage Treatment Plant will be converted to a lift station and gravity sewer lines will be installed.

Lawrence’s eastern section does not have a public sanitary sewer system and uses a series of “wildcat sewers,” where sewage from homes or farms is piped directly into streams and ditches.

The loan will be repaid over 20 years, and is coming from the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST). The funding for PENNVEST comes from federal grants, Marcellus Legacy funds, recycled loan payments from previous funding awards, and other sources.

Wolf said in a news release, “Offering affordable financing for large-scale projects has allowed Pennsylvania’s communities to grow and rebuild without burdening residents with unreasonable financial demands...”

The grants and loans announced by the governor’s office total $168 million.

“Investment for infrastructure continues to be a top priority for me,” said state Sen. Camera Bartolotta, R-Carroll, in a news release. By removing the wildcat sewer discharges, the possibility of human contact with raw sewage is eliminated. In addition to preserving public health, the improvements made possible with the PENNVEST loan will also eliminate discharges of raw sewage into tributaries of Chartiers Creek and positively impact stream quality.”