BY MICHAEL J. RUDOLF
Wyoming County Press Examiner
LEMON TWP. – A handful of Lake Carey residents told the township supervisors on Monday that they were in favor of a sewer system around the lake.
Pete Butler said he represented a number of landowners at the lake. He said people want sewers to help alleviate problems caused by on-lot sewage systems.
"I just wanted to register our being in favor of sewers at Lake Carey," Butler said.
Butler presented the supervisors with a two-page fact sheet on the reasons sewers would be beneficial to residents. The sheet lists items such as why on-lot systems are ineffective around the lake, the costs of sewers and the impact on residents, and the motivation for doing the project at this time.
For example, the sheet notes that the soil around the lake is mostly clay, which results in effluent from on-lot systems not being absorbed properly before reaching the lake. When untreated sewage gets in the lake water, it causes the growth of algae, which is toxic to fish, animals and people.
The fact sheet also points out that the nature of homes around the lake has changed over time, going from a seasonal community to one filled with year-round residences.
"While on-lot systems may have had little impact on the lake years ago, the increase in use and more permanent residents, using antiquated septic systems, has taken its toll on ground and lake water quality," the sheet notes.
Supervisor John Camburn wondered what percentage of homeowners at the lake favored sewers. Resident Alan Thatcher estimated about half wanted the plan as currently suggested.
"The half that are against are not against sewers. They're against sewers without a land use ordinance," Thatcher clarified.
Resident Dick Daniels said there are a many residents who are afraid to speak up for fear of alienating their neighbors.
"A lot of people don't want to say anything because it's so controversial," Daniels said.
In a related matter, the supervisors voted to replace the soil scientist working on the township's sewage plan, saying he wasn't doing they type of work the township supervisors wanted.
The fee for the new scientist will be $12,000 instead of the original $7,000 for the original scientist, the supervisors noted. That cost is to be split between Lemon and Tunkhannock townships.
The supervisors also voted to allow Dawson Geophysical to extend cables across township roads while doing seismic testing for natural gas wells. Previous cables were run only along the edges of roads.
As part of the agreement, Dawson would remove the cables if there is a snowstorm forecast, so they don't interfere with plows.