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The Bucks County Water & Sewer Authority (BCWSA) recently informed its customers that sanitary sewer rates will increase beginning with the January 2018 invoices. Prior to selling the sanitary sewer system to BCWSA in 2015, the Board of Commissioners negotiated a two-year rate "freeze" that expired in December 2017.
Beginning with the January invoice, Springfield Township customers will be charged 100% of all metered water flows at a rate of $5.58 per one thousand gallons of water consumption. The consumption fee pays for the treatment of sewage flows at one of two treatment facilities operated by the City of Philadelphia. To the extent that the City of Philadelphia increases its treatment fees, the increased cost must be passed along to those contributing the flows. In addition, a monthly customer charge will be added to each metered account at a cost of $22.45. The monthly charge will be utilized to fund capital improvements that are necessary to ensure the aging system of underground pipes is maintained in good working order. For example, BCWSA is currently in the process of cleaning, flushing and re-lining the township's main interceptor line from Stenton Avenue to Northwestern Avenue in Erdenheim. The cost of this project is well over $1 million and represents only a small portion of a much larger contract that has been awarded by BCWSA. In contrast, the Springfield Township sewer rates that were in place prior to 2018 did not incorporate the cost of funding capital improvements into the rate structure in an effort to keep rates as low as possible.
BCWSA is an independent, non-profit agency formed in 1962 under the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Act. A municipal authority is an independent agency created by a governmental body to carry out a specific enterprise function. In the case of BCWSA this function is to provide water and sewer services. There is no tax money involved to sustain the Authority’s operation. Instead, their income is derived from customers who use and pay for the services. There are also no profits because an Authority, by law, can only charge for what the service actually costs. This ensures you can enjoy the best services at the lowest possible cost.
In the event that you have a question about your sewer bill or experience a problem with your sanitary sewer service, you should contact BCWSA at 215-343-3946 where you will be connected with a live person regardless of the time or day.