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Storm outfall problem debated

May 07, 2009|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- Is wider really better?

That was the question asked of engineers working on a storm water outfall problem along Cemetery Avenue in Waynesboro.

The Waynesboro Borough Council met with Dennis E. Black Engineering representatives on Wednesday to tackle improvements for the troublesome outfall. Some council members questioned whether it'd be wise to pay more for wider concrete culverts that would allow more water to flow.

Lance Kegerreis responded that his engineering firm will prepare a price and benefits comparison for the council.

"Definitely check on it and get a comparison. We need to check on it," Councilman C. Harold Mumma said.

"It's a lot cheaper now rather than later," Councilman Ronnie Martin said.

Council recently applied for a PENNVEST loan to pay for the outfall improvements, but the application was deferred and must be resubmitted by next Friday. The application changed when state and federal agencies labeled the outfall a stream, prohibiting the borough from making it deeper or wider as planned.

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Two-thirds of the borough's storm water flows through the outfall when it rains.

The engineers continue to suggest the borough install larger culverts under Maple and South Church streets. Now, they also suggest changing the outfall's slope between South Potomac and Maple streets to better protect Steven and Susan Bumbaugh's house, which has flooded during storms.

Additional steps will be taken to stabilize the outfall's banks between South Potomac and Maple streets.

"We can't keep (water) out of the yard if the DEP won't let us go in and change the channel sufficiently," Kegerreis said.

Scaling back the work reduced the estimated price tag from $1.8 million to $1 million, officials said.

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