Twelve Berks County water and sewer projects have received a big funding boost.
Several lawmakers who represent the county announced Aug. 17 that the state has awarded 13 municipalities and local authorities nearly $1.8 million in grants to complete these infrastructure projects through the Commonwealth Finance Authority.
"I am thankful these vitally important projects received the funding they need to support local wastewater treatment plants,” said State Sen. Dave Argall in a press release. "Projects like these are critical for the smooth functioning of our communities."
State Sen. Judy Schwank agreed.
“Properly functioning water and wastewater infrastructure protects public health and safety and promotes economic growth," Schwank said in a separate press release. "I strongly advocated for these grants to help our local communities make necessary improvements."
Schwank said it is especially important that Reading is receiving two grants: a $350,000 H2O grant to modify the dam in Egleman's Park and a $125,000 small water and sewer system grant to improve the Fritz Island wastewater treatment plant.
"With its limited resources, the city might not have been able to finish these critical infrastructure improvements without this state grant funding," she said.
Reading Mayor Eddie Moran said the grants show the importance of building strong relationships with state lawmakers.
"This state investment in our city will help my administration continue our efforts to improve one of our most scenic parks and our wastewater system for the benefit of all city residents," Moran said. "Partnerships like this with state government are critically important for Reading's future, and I want to thank Sen. Schwank and her colleagues for working diligently to help secure these funds."
Additionally, Schwank announced grants for the following projects:
• In Ruscombmanor Township, $50,000 for updating the stormwater treatment system.
• In Muhlenberg Township, $100,000 for the replacement of interceptor line along Leisczs Bridge Road.
• In Oley Township, $100,000 for the rehabilitation of the sewer collection system and $250,000 for improvements for its wastewater treatment plant.
• In Robeson Township, $50,000 for improvements to a sewage pumping station.
• In Mount Penn, $100,000 for the installation of a new generator at three pump stations to provide uninterrupted water service.
• In Cumru Township, $100,000 for inflow and infiltration improvements.
• In Centre Township, $50,000 for upgrades at Kingsgate wastewater treatment plant.
• In Laureldale, $100,000 for the replacement of pipe and fittings to reduce the inflow and infiltration from entering the sewer system.
• In Kutztown, $100,000 for solids handling improvements.
• In Birdsboro, $50,000 for improvements at the Hay Creek Raw Station.
• In West Reading, $200,000 for the replacement of 510 feet of sewer main and 30 connections.
• In Shoemakersville, $100,000 for the replacement of existing valves with electronically controlled valves to create a more efficient and reliable system.