By Richard W. Funk
The REPUBLICAN & Herald; Herald, © 2004

September 30, 2004

After decades of living with a wildcat sewer system, most residents of the McAdoo area will now have sewage treated in a state-of-the-art plant, instead of having it run into a former strip mine.

On Saturday, Sept. 25, the new plant was dedicated during a well-attended ceremony, which included a tour of the facility and refreshments.

“Welcome to the 21st Century, “State Representative Dave Argall (R-124th) told those who gathered. “A lot of people have been involved and a lot of time has been spent on this project.”

According to Argall, companies looking for a new home will take into account that the area has a modern sewer system and treatment plant. That, he said, would result in more jobs being created.

“This will be a big help in attracting companies to the area,” he said. “Congratulations on a job well done.”

The Kline Banks McAdoo (KBM) Regional Authority was formed on Oct. 14, 1999 and it was agreed that each municipality would install and maintain their own collection systems, but share the cost of building a treatment plant. Funding for the project came through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Act (Pennvest) and construction started on July 31, 2002.

A pumping station on Grant Street, McAdoo, brings wastewater to the plant, and a second station pumps sewage to the plant from Tresckow. After the water is disinfected and treated, it goes through an outfall on Grant Street and discharges into the Catawissa Creek.

The $5 million facility includes a control building, with a laboratory for testing and process control, a computer-driven control system for the reactors, a blower room, an electrical control and switchgear room, an emergency generator, and chemical and chlorination facilities.

According to the project’s engineering firm, Spotts, Stevens and McCoy, Inc., the treatment process uses activated sludge. Millions of microorganisms are developed naturally in the reactors from the life-cycle decay process. After the process is complete, the clarified liquid from the reactors moves to a chlorine contact tank, where chlorine gas is introduced to remove pathogens and harmful bacteria before being discharged.

Like many communities, McAdoo, Kelayres and Tresckow were under a Department of Environmental Protection order to develop an Act 537 (the Sewage Facilities Act) plan. Early in the discussions, some people wanted to send the wastewater the the Greater Hazleton Joint Sewer Authority’s plant for treatment.

McAdoo Mayor Steve Holly said that building a plant was the better option.

“This is finally a reality,” Holly said. “I’m so happy we chose to build our own plant, instead of hooking onto another system. This means a lot to the area.”