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Buckingham joins towns opposing sewer sale


Buckingham Township has joined a growing list of Bucks County municipalities who oppose a possible $1 billion sale of the Bucks County Water and Sewer Authority sewer operation to Aqua Pennsylvania.

At the Aug. 24 board of supervisors meeting, Chairman Paul Calderario and fellow supervisors Maggie Rash and Jon Forest voted unanimously to approve a resolution opposing the sale. Buckingham has 445 BCWSA sewer customers, said Rash, who this year is serving as president of the Bucks County Association of Township Officials.

Customers and officials across the county have concerns about how the possible sale might affect rates, repairs and accountability, and Buckingham is no exception.

“It would impose an unneeded financial burden on citizens,” Forest said.

“My philosophy on utilities is that they should be a public service,” Calderaio added. “When you can do it, it should stay public.”

The Bucks County Commissioners, who would have final say on whether to approve a sale, unanimously opposed the sale this week.

The Buckingham supervisors agreed to table another resolution that would join Buckingham with “other municipal bodies in opposition to the sale...and agreeing to pay a pro rata share of the costs of opposing such action.”

Board members felt they needed more time to consider the financial and other ramifications of the resolution before voting on it.

In other moves at the Aug. 24 meeting, the supervisors approved a bid from Franc Environmental to remove and dispose of 650,000 gallons annually (more or less) of liquid sludge from the township sewage treatment plant. The Franc firm would charge $0.0782 per gallon and the contract is for one year starting Sept. 1 and extending through Aug. 31, 2023.

Board members also voted to release $194,886 from escrow being held on a previously approved project that will see a new Wawa with gas pumps be built on North Easton Road. When completed, the store will be the second Wawa in Buckingham, joining one near the intersection of Route 413 and York Road.