Municipal Report: Caernarvon searches for solution for waste water management

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CAERNARVON TWP., LANCASTER CO. - With minds to the future for a solution to the waste water management problems of Goodville in East Earl Township and Churchtown in Caernarvon Township, Chairman Gary VanDyke presented the suggestion of developing a sewage treatment plant to serve both villages during the February 4 meeting of the township’s Board of Supervisors.

Municipal officials are looking at what is permitted in the way of treatment plants in rural areas, and East Earl is under a consent order with a time limit set by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to provide plans for waste water treatment for Goodville. The fines for non-compliance are severe.

VanDyke said that a workshop would be a good place to study the benefits of different systems.

Supervisor Terry Martin said that the township “would be taking on baggage” by going with Goodville.

The local residents do not have adequate funds to pay the costs for the waste water systems, said van Dyke.

“We don’t want a centralized sewage treatment plant,” said Supervisor Terry Martin.

“We are looking for answer because we have a positive notion that there is a solution. We have to prove we are (rural) and the system we use will work and protect the environment. Hopefully we will solve the problem,” VanDyke stated. He added that he will look for information on systems which would be suitable in Churchtown.

Jim Cox, former resident of Churchtown, now representing the Elanco Public Library, said that residents of Garden Spot Village have started a program to help residents learn how to use a computer and social media like Facebook and Twitter. The library has other programs available to residents at Garden Spot Village.

There is also an educational program at the library for anyone who wants to start small businesses. Cox said there are many Amish who attend the seminars of business education. There are many opportunities to start small businesses in the Elanco area.

A Book Swap will be set up at the new Holland Coffee Company and at the Olde Bakery Shop and Deli in Churchtown.

There is also a program called “1, 2, 3, play with me” offered for parents with children aged 1 to 3 where information will be provided on good health and early learning parental involvement for toddlers.

“We want the library to become a community center for the area”. We want to provide more space but we do not have the money.”

About $50,000 was raised at their annual dinner, and the library is looking for additional fundraising activities, said Cox.

VanDyke said the Elanco Library was welcome to use the township meeting room for their programs.

Information on any of the Elanco Library programs can be attained by calling the library at 717-454-0525.

The New Holland Area Food Bank, an outreach of the Elanco Social Services Network (ESSN), is looking for volunteers. Call 717-354-3776 for volunteer opportunities, information on donations, and hours of operation. In 2011, over three thousand individuals were helped by the New Holland Food Bank. ESSN will provide weekend food and nutritional information to families when the school lunch program is unavailable.

Martin said David K. Smucker of 167 Water Street is planning to divide his farm into two parcels of 65 acres and 29 acres. A building lot will be included in one of the parcels. The land is preserved.

Township Engineer John Roche said there are some storm water management issues there that have to be solved before they build.

Bob Watts, general manager of the Lanchester Landfill, said that the landfill is working with the Northern Chester County Municipal Authority to have sewer lines extended to the landfill. The water on the Susquehanna Rivershed will go through their present treatment system. The office building and the scale house will be connected to the sewer lines to the Honey Brook Township Treatment Plant. The sewers now run as far as Reservoir Road.

“We have drilled 8 new gas extraction wells,” said Watts. “Dart Container in Leola is using landfill gas to electric generators and now L. & S. Sweeteners will do the same.”

There are currently 230 wells.

A committee of volunteers from local municipalities has been formed to study various types of woody vegetation that could be used on closed areas of the landfill said Watts. The first meeting will be on May 14 at the landfill office. The committee will meet quarterly.

The landfill made donations of $10,000 to the White Horse, Honey Brook and Churchtown Fire Departments and the Honey Brook Ambulance Association. Watts said they are still trying to resolve the issue of donations to local charities.

Joel Martin has been appointed to represent Caernarvon Township on the Chester County Solid Waste Authority. Van Dyke said he possesses a wealth of knowledge on the subject of waste management.

“We should start a program to collect heavy used silo bags from farmers. We could provide a truck to pick them up,” said VanDyke.

Dry leaf mulch will be available free to the public on April 6 from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m.

VanDyke said that in December officials from the state were treated to a tour of the Conestoga Ridge Scenic Byway. They visited several locations along the route from Route 322, Weaverland Road, Weaverland Valley Road and then along Route 23 to Morgantown. Along the route they had lunch and visited Poole Forge.

“It was a very positive (experience),” he said.

The byway has been developed by East Earl and Caernarvon Townships. Each township currently has its own sign ordinance, and a follow-up ordinance will be made for placing signs along the scenic byway.

The Ag. Advisory Committee will meet on Feb. 21, said VanDyke.

Another mailing will be made to farmers reminding them to enter into Ag. security zones. Farmers have to be in an Ag. security zone in order to benefit from other Ag. programs. The Committee will work with East Earl in establishing an ordinance for implementing the Transfer Development Rights land conservation program.

The Board of Directors for the Poole Forge Historic area will meet on February 19.

“Since the Humane League of Lancaster County is no longer taking strays, we have to look for other places to take stray dogs,” said VanDyke.

One solutions suggested was to adopt the animals out.

Calls may be made to the Chester County S.P. C.A. or the Berks County Animal Rescue League about lost pets, said Township Secretary/Treasurer Kathy Norris.

The Caernarvon Memorial Committee is making plans for the 2013 Memorial Day program in Churchtown. Residents interested in helping out should call VanDyke at 717 445-7978.

The Welsh Mountain Preserve Committee will meet on Feb. 20, said VanDyke.

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