Whitehall-Coplay Press

Sunday, December 16, 2018

CWSA rushes to get Front St. project winter-ready

Wednesday, December 27, 2017 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

The Coplay-Whitehall Sewer Authority (CWSA) board put Engineer Darryl Jenkins on the spot regarding Front Street at its regular meeting Dec. 21.

The long-delayed project is winding down, but board members had a few concerns they want to have addressed. Board member Joseph Marx reported on the quality of the asphalt basecoat.

“The areas that were reworked were not saw-cut and then were filled in,” he said.

Coplay’s director of public works, Paul Boyle, was in attendance and worried that snowplowing crews could damage the base. The finish coat will not be applied until spring. CWSA wants the contractor and engineer to concentrate on getting the roadway up to an acceptable standard for the winter.

The new sidewalks had problems in certain areas.

“I saw a few sidewalks where a key way was cut into the curb to direct stormwater, but the sidewalk was not modified,” Marx said.

Jenkins said he will address the matter.

The board is not happy with the work done by the contractor and wants to address the quality of the work directly. There is a second contract signed and pending with the same contractor. Solicitor John Stover indicated it would be difficult for the board to pull the contract and may cause too many legal concerns.

Chairman John Schreiner asked for details on the status of CWSA’s proposal to bring public sewers to Summit and Prospect streets in Whitehall. As reported earlier, sewers in the area are failing or marginal. The proposal brings public sewers to all but two residential units in the area.

Whitehall Township has not responded with a positive vote to proceed with the project and the necessary 537 plan modifications.

“There are grants available that we can apply for, but there is no sense applying for the grants if we don’t have approval from the township to move forward,” Schreiner said.

Grant proposals need to be submitted by February. The approval process takes months. Marx, who also serves as a Whitehall Township commissioner, will carry the message back to the commissioners and ask for a decision at their Jan. 2 meeting.

General Manager David Harleman received permission to move forward with the purchase of a new water jet truck. The cost is $239,000. Jet trucks are used to clean sewers of debris. The older truck will be offered to Whitehall Township to clean storm sewers.

The board bid farewell to member Michael Hobel. Hobel stepped down from the board after 10 years of service. Schreiner presented Hobel with a parting gift and welcomed his replacement, Paul Boyle, of Coplay.