Township gets $1.1 million grant for water tower

October 01, 2004|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - State Sen. Terry Punt announced Thursday night that he has secured a $1.1 million grant so the Washington Township Municipal Authority can build a 1.5 million-gallon water storage tank.

Punt, R-Franklin, made the announcement at a meeting of the Greater Waynesboro Area Vision 2015. More than 80 people attended the event at Waynesboro Country Club.

"WTMA's water resources are running low," Punt said. "They need new wells." He said he secured a $250,000 grant earlier for the public utility.


He pointed to the growth in Washington Township east of Waynesboro, including more than 1,000 acres of farmland that the Washington Township Supervisors rezoned last year for commercial and residential development.

Projects slated for the rezoned land include a major shopping center anchored by Wal-Mart and Lowe's, plus an estimated 2,000 new homes.

"The water situation is getting crucial," Punt said. "The new water tower will increase storage capacity and flow. It will allow for the continuation of growth."

Michael Christopher, Washington Township manager, said the tower will aid in fire protection and help the township deal with the growth that is coming.

Punt said revenue generated from sales taxes from the new shopping center will more than repay the state for the grant.

Punt also said the Vision 2015 committee will help to shape the future of the greater Waynesboro area.

The committee is made up of government, business, service organizations and citizen leaders from Mont Alto, Pa., and Waynesboro boroughs and Washington and Quincy townships.

Its goal is to be a community-based organization of representatives from the four communities that will define key issues likely to affect the development of the area. It also works to create a forum for long-range community planning.

Christopher is the committee's chairman.

Speakers Thursday included George Reitz, Franklin County drug prevention specialist; Edward Geubtner of Mullin & Lonergan Assoc., Inc., of Philadelphia, longtime consultant for Waynesboro's Community Development Block Grant programs; and Larry Segal, executive director of the Governor's Office for Housing and Community Development.

A highlight Thursday was the committee's release of its 57-page report on the quality of life for the greater Waynesboro area drafted by Geubtner's firm.

Much of the data for the report was mined from interviews with local people asking their opinions on how the quality of life in the community can be improved.

Among the interviewees were members of the second-grade class at Waynesboro's Fairview Elementary School.

When asked what they liked about living in the area, Geubtner said, one second-grader asked, "Why do we continue to build farther out when we have empty buildings in between?"

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