Meeting set to discuss new sewer system
By Ashley Luthern
The township will have a public meeting with Mahoning County officials to address residents’ questions about a new sewer system.
The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. April 12 after the 5 p.m. trustees’ meeting at the township government building, 3339 Dobbins Road. Representatives of the Mahoning County Board of Health and the Sanitary Engineer’s Office will attend.
Last month, construction began on the South Struthers Interceptor Sewer that will serve Poland Township and take water to the waste-water plant on Struthers Road.
New areas along Struthers and Kennedy roads will have access to sewer service, but that isn’t making all residents happy.
Mike Sanko of Arrel-Smith Road voiced his concern at the March 8 trustees meeting about the costs to tap in to the sewer system.
“Why should I have to tie in the system?” he asked. “We spent thousands of dollars putting in our septic system.”
After Sanko’s comment, township trustees asked township Administrator Jim Scharville to organize a meeting for residents with the board of health and sanitary engineers about the sewer project.
In Mahoning County, it costs $1,300 for a three-bedroom, single- family dwelling to tap in to the sewer; $1,462 for a four-bedroom, single-family dwelling; and “the prices go up from there,” said David Benedetto, supervisor of construction and design for the county.
The cost is based on the number of bedrooms for a single-family dwelling and the state’s sewage flow guide, Benedetto said.
It must be paid in “one lump sum prior to us issuing the permit,” he added.
The metered, water-consumption rate is $6.60 per 1,000 gallons of usage plus a fixed monthly rate per customer of $5.75, Benedetto said, noting those rates have stayed the same since January 2009.
Residents will have a lag time of a couple of months from when the sewer project is completed and the board of health mails letters requiring households to tap in to the sewer, Benedetto said.
Scharville said that a few years ago, the township had at least two meetings where the project and costs were discussed.
“We’re going to have to remind people now that it’s a reality,” he said.
Scharville said the response to the project generally has been positive.
“Most of the people — they’re for it because that’s a very old system, and it’s been a problem area for the township for years,” he said. “It’s still a great idea, but with the economy being down right now, it might be tough for people to [pay] the tap-in fees.”