As has been widely reported, the City of Reading wastewater treatment plant at Fritz Island is mandated to perform certain upgrades. Some of those upgrades have already begun. Cumru Township sends 98% of its sanity sewer effluent to Fritz Island. Sewer customers in all of the municipalities sending sewer effluent to Fritz Island, including Cumru Township, are responsible for a portion of the cost of these upgrades. Certain additional charges from the City of Reading will begin to increase over the next few years. Cumru Township's only source of income to pay these costs is the quarterly fee charged to its sewer customers.
Rather than imposing a sudden, steep increase in the sewer rate, Cumru Township endorsed a strategy in 2012 of gradually raising the sewer rate to pay for the estimated cost of Fritz Island upgrades and other charges by the City of Reading. Several municipalities have adopted this strategy, with a rate increase projected to be between 8% and 8.25% annually for 9 years. Each year, a certain amount of the sewer fund balance is designated for payment of the City charges described above. The sewer rate is reviewed each year as part of the annual budget preparation. This strategy was discussed at public meetings in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.
The 2016 sewer rate increases will be 8.0% (rounded). A metered account will pay $119.00 for a minimum charge on the first 7,500 gallons of water consumption and an unmetered (well) account will pay a flat rate of $166.00 per equivalent dwelling unit, or EDU.
The township staff and the Municipal Authority are drafting ordinances in preparation for a future well metering program that is intended to bring sewer charges for well properties in line with sewer charges for properties on public water.
For information on the sewer rates please "click" on Fact Sheet.