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Borough of Greencastle sewer rates to rise

July 07, 2004|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - Greencastle residents will soon see a 40 percent hike in their quarterly sewer rates, from $31.95 to $45 to pay for improvements at the borough's wastewater treatment plant.

The new rates go into effect with the September sewer bills. The last time the borough raised sewer rates was 1989.

The council, on a 4-2 vote Tuesday, agreed to sell $2.4 million worth of bonds to finance the aeration and sludge management project at the borough's wastewater sewer plant.

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Councilmen Charles Eckstine and Gerald Pool voted against the move.

Voting for it were members Donald Coldsmith, W. Jean Oliver, Harold E. Duffey and Sydnae Vanner. Council President Barbara Bock was absent. Duffey, the council's vice president, ran the meeting.

The council, in addition to awarding a bid for the project, authorized Public Financial Management Inc. of Harrisburg, Pa., its bond counsel, to issue general obligation bonds to finance the project over the next 22 years.

The bond counsel will report back to the council Aug. 2 with the best interest rate, at which time the rate will be locked in.

Construction is scheduled to begin in September.

Borough Solicitor Dennis Guyer advised the council to approve the project or face the possibility that the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection would force the borough to upgrade its waste water system.

Guyer said delaying now would only increase the cost of construction later.

Pool argued that the project could be done in phases to lessen the financial burden on users of the system.

He also said the system the council approved is new and untried. "We're being used as guinea pigs," he said.

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