BURNHAM - Burnham Borough Council made a motion Monday for Solicitor Jeff Snook to advertise new sewer rates and to approve the Sewer Rate Ordinance at an adjourned meeting.
Sewer rates were determined to gradually increase pending the state-mandated upgrade of the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Effective in October, the sewer rate ordinance will bill residential customers on a monthly basis, with quarterly billing remaining intact for commercial and industrial owners.
The rates are set to be $35 per month for residential customers, and $105 for up to 9,000 gallons used per quarter for commercial and industrial owners, with an added $8.25 per gallon additionally used. The new sewer rate ordinance must be adopted in June to ensure July usage is under the new rate for commercial and industrial owners. New rates for residential customers will not take effect until the October billing period.
Snook reminded the council that final rates depend upon assistance via the Pennsylvania Infrastructure and Investment Authority loan or grant for which the borough applied. Sewer rates are in direct relation to loans and grants given to the borough. Grant money lowers interest rates and loans needed to pay for the Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Snook also stated that the increased sewer rates, "...(aren't) anything council or authority volunteered for. It's mandated." The Department of Environmental Protection will require all plants need to be upgraded and in compliance by 2014.
Council also instructed Supervisor Noah Wise to get quotes from companies in order to deal with trees on South Walnut Street. Trees in that area need cut back according to the council, with four trees having already come down during the storms recently seen in the area. The council said that creekside trees are "shaky" and need attention "right away."
Wise informed the council that prisoners of war who were recently in the area wish to donate a flag and POW-MIA flag for the circle in Burnham. The group would also like to speak to the board about erecting a monument at the circle, as there were 19 Vietnam casualties from the area. Burnham Borough Council would pay nothing, and said that once presented with a proposal, the council plans to allow the addition.
Finally, borough President Robert Soccio commended Wise, Secretary Lisa Jyl Hayes and all other Burnham Borough employees for their actions during the recent storms.
"Our employees are the best group of people we have," Soccio said, also stating that everyone has really worked together to ease the chaos and fix the damage brought on by the weather.
The council's next regular meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. June 18.