Debate over township’s water and sewer sale continues

Local News
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Sandy Township Supervisors decided Monday night to table the decision to sell their municipal authority until their next meeting.

Residents packed the municipal building meeting room to voice their concerns about the sale.

The township is considering selling their water and sewer to one of two bidders. The first is the City of DuBois, the other is privately owned Aqua PA.

Both placed a $12 million bid.

Under Aqua’s plan, a water and sewer customer using 3,000 gallons a month would pay $121.75. Under the DuBois plans, that customer would pay either $88.87 or $95.77, depending on which proposal the township accepts.

While DuBois offers a cheaper bill now, it’s not locked in. Township expect improvements to the city’s water and sewer infrastructure could cost around $45 million, causing bills to go up.

Supervisors advised residents to not look at the numbers, but rather the long run.

“We’re all looking towards the future, we’re always doing that,” Sandy Township Manager Dave Monella said. “First and foremost, we’re looking out for the residents of Sandy Township. We’re looking out for the users of the system. We want the very best we can get for our users and for our taxpayers.”

However, some residents still don’t think Aqua’s offer is the right choice.

“It’s really important that we see the long term future, but I haven’t been convinced that selling our natural resources, what we have in DuBois, to a Philadelphia corporation is the answer,” resident David Stern said.

Supervisors decided to extend the discussion to their next meeting because they said they want to make a final attempt to sit down with the City of DuBois.

“They made the right decision to table it,” resident Jim Dieringer said. “A local authority would probably be the best solution because local people, because all politics are local, so you have to solve the problems here.”

Other concerns brought up were the loss of the township’s infrastructure and the water quality provided by Aqua PA.

The next supervisors meeting will be held Monday, September 10 at 7 p.m. in the Sandy Township Municipal Building.

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