Pennsylvania Second Class Township Code
 

                         ARTICLE XXV
                        SANITARY SEWERS

 Section 2501. Sanitary Sewers. - The board of supervisors may establish and construct
sanitary sewer systems which shall if possible be constructed along and  within the lines of the
rights-of-way of public roads. If the board of supervisors determines that the systems shall be located
on or through private property, the board of supervisors may acquire the land by gift, purchase or
eminent domain.

 Section 2502. Sanitary Sewer Connections. -

(a) The board of supervisors may by
ordinance require adjoining and adjacent property owners to connect with and use the sanitary sewer
system, whether constructed by the township or a municipality authority or a joint sanitary sewer
board. In the case of a sanitary sewer system constructed by the township pursuant to either section
2501 or 2516, the board of supervisors may impose and charge to property owners who desire to or
are required to connect to the township's sewer system a connection fee, a customer facilities fee,
a tapping fee and other similar fees, as enumerated and defined by clause (t) of subsection B of
section 4 of the act of May 2, 1945 (P.L.382, No.164), known as the “Municipality Authorities Act
of 1945," as a condition of connection to a township-owned sewer collection, treatment or disposal
facility. If any owner of property adjoining or adjacent to or whose principal building is within one
hundred and fifty feet from the sanitary sewer fails to connect with and use the sanitary sewer for
a period of sixty days after notice to do so has been served by the board of supervisors, either by
personal service or by registered mail, the board of supervisors or their agents may enter the property
and construct the connection. The board of supervisors shall send an itemized bill of the cost of
construction to the owner of the property to which connection has been made, which bill is payable
immediately. If the owner fails to pay the bill, the board of supervisors shall file a municipal lien for
the cost of  the construction within six months of the date of completion of the connection.
 
(b) When an existing sanitary sewer system owned by or leased to a township is extended
or altered at the expense of a developer or other private person or corporation under the supervision
of the township or a municipality authority of the township, the board of supervisors may by
ordinance or resolution take over the extension or alteration and compel all owners of property which
is not already connected to an existing public sanitary sewer system and which  is accessible to and
whose principal building is within one hundred and fifty feet from the sanitary sewer extension to
make connection therewith and use the sanitary sewer system as the board of supervisors may order.
 
(c) Whenever a sewer system or any part or extension thereof owned by a township has been
constructed by the township at the expense of a private person or corporation or has been constructed
by a private person or corporation under the supervision of the township at the expense of the private
person or corporation, the board of supervisors shall have the right to charge a tapping fee, including
a reimbursement component, and refund said reimbursement component to the person or corporation
who has paid for the construction of said sewer system or any part or extension thereof.

 (d) The board of supervisors shall not require any commercial or industrial business to
connect to the township sanitary sewer system when the commercial or industrial business is
operating a private sanitary sewage treatment plant under mandate of any agency of the Federal or
State Government. This exemption shall last as long as the private sanitary sewage treatment plant
continues to meet the specifications and standards mandated by the Federal or State agency and for
forty- five days after that. If during the days immediately after the day a business' private sanitary
sewage treatment plant is determined to be below Federal or State mandates, repairs cannot be made
to bring the private sewage treatment system back up to satisfactory condition, the board of
supervisors may require the business to connect to the township sanitary sewer system. The  full
costs of connection to and any necessary refurbishing of the township sanitary sewer system shall
be paid by the business.

 (e) The exemption in subsection (d) is not available in any situation where the business
seeking to use it had notice, either actual or constructive, before construction of its sewage treatment
plant, of the township's intention to construct a sanitary sewer system and to require that business
to connect  with its system.

 (f) The Department of Environmental Protection shall not issue any permit to allow a
commercial or industrial business to construct its own private sewage treatment plant without the
written consent of the board of  supervisors of the township in which the private sewage treatment
plant is proposed to be located.

 Section 2503. Notice of Contemplated Construction. - No sanitary sewer system shall be
constructed under this article unless a resolution of the board of supervisors authorizing the
construction is published in a  newspaper of general circulation in the township once a week for three
successive weeks.

 Section 2504.  Entering Lands to Mark Sanitary Sewer Routes; Damages. - In the
absence of an agreement with the owners of land required for sanitary sewer systems or for the
marking of the route of the systems, the board of supervisors or its agents have the right to enter the
lands for that purpose. For all damage done by entering the land under this section, the general fund
of the township shall be pledged as security. Damages shall be determined by viewers under this act
for eminent domain proceedings.

 Section 2505.  Sanitary Sewer Systems; Acquisition of Land and Facilities; Damages.
The board of supervisors may acquire by eminent domain or make contracts with other municipal
corporations, corporations  or persons for the acquisition of lands or facilities for the location,
construction, maintenance, reconstruction and enlargement of sanitary sewer systems and treatment
facilities.   Acquisitions may be made for the purpose of future construction or additions to existing
systems. The acquired land may be located either inside or outside the boundaries of the township.
For all damage done to owners of land by reason of the taking of the land, the general fund of the
township shall  be pledged as security.  Damages shall be determined by viewers under this act for
eminent  domain proceedings.

 Section 2506. Cost of Construction; How Paid. - All or part of the cost of construction of
a sanitary sewer system constructed under this article may be charged upon the properties
accommodated or benefited by the construction.

 Section 2507. Sanitary Sewer Districts.-

(a) When a sanitary sewer system is constructed
by a township for the accommodation of a certain portion of the township, the board of supervisors
may before or after the construction designate the territory accommodated as one sanitary sewer
district or divide it into several sanitary sewer districts. The board of supervisors shall estimate the
proportion of the cost of the sanitary sewer system to be charged on each of  the districts and declare
and establish the apportionment by resolution.

 (b) When a sanitary sewer system is constructed by a township for the benefit only of a
certain portion of the township and the cost of main sanitary sewers, pumping stations, pressure
lines, et cetera, is charged against the sanitary sewer district or sanitary sewer districts, all or part of
the amount charged to each district may be assessed to the district by an assessment upon each lot
or piece of land in the district, in proportion to its frontage abutting on the sanitary sewer, or by an
assessment upon the several properties abutting on the sanitary sewer, in proportion to benefits, or
upon the properties connected with and using the sanitary sewers as rental fees, or each lot or piece
of ground abutting upon the sanitary sewer may be assessed, in proportion to its frontage or
according to benefits, the cost of a local sanitary sewer, and the balance of the amount charged
against the district may be assessed upon the properties connected with and using the sanitary sewer,
as rental fees. No district shall be charged with more than its due proportion of the cost of the main
sanitary sewers, pumping stations, et cetera, used jointly by more than one district. If the whole of
the  township is accommodated by the sanitary sewer system, it may be treated as a single district.

 Section 2508. Manner of Assessment. - When a township is divided into sanitary sewer
districts, the assessment in each district may be by different methods. The assessment, if any, for
sanitary sewer system construction shall be charged upon the properties accommodated or benefited
by one of  the following methods:
 (1) By an assessment, under a resolution or ordinance of the board of supervisors, of each
lot or piece of land in proportion to its frontage abutting on the sanitary sewer system, allowing an
equitable reduction in the case of corner properties and unusually shaped properties or those
properties abutting on more than one collector line of the sanitary sewer as the resolution or
ordinance may specify. When the lot or piece of land is on a corner, it shall be assessed for its entire
frontage abutting on any sanitary sewer system.
 (2) By an equal assessment on all properties abutting on the sanitary sewer system in
proportion to the total cost of construction of the sanitary sewer system.   The amount of the charge
on each property shall be determined by the board of supervisors.

 Section 2509. Procedure for Assessments.- If any taxpayer states, by petition, within three
months of the adoption of a resolution or ordinance levying an assessment under section 2508 to the
court of common pleas that the  assessment insufficiently represents the benefits accruing to
abutting properties, they may include in the petition a request for the appointment of  viewers to
assess benefits. The court shall appoint three viewers, none of whom shall be a resident of that
portion of the township which is accommodated by the sanitary sewer system in question, and the
viewers shall proceed under this act for the assessment of damages and benefits. Upon the filing of
a petition by taxpayers for appointment of viewers, any assessment made by the board of supervisors
and any proceedings shall be stayed pending the disposition of the petition by the court.

 Section 2510. Liens for Assessments; Costs of Proceedings. - After the amount of the
assessment charged upon the several properties has been established by resolution making
assessments according to frontage or by confirmation of any report of viewers, in whole or in part,
the amounts of all assessments are payable to the township treasurer for the use of the sanitary sewer
district or districts or the township in which they are assessed. The board of supervisors shall make
out bills for the amounts charged against each property, which shall be sent to all property owners
whose property will be served by the sanitary sewer system. If the assessment is not paid within sixty
days after the mailing of a bill therefor, the board of supervisors shall collect it by action of
assumpsit or under law for the filing and recovery of municipal claims.

 Section 2511. Rental Fees.-
(a) All persons whose property is connected to a sanitary sewer
system shall pay to the township treasurer, in addition to the cost of making the connection, a
monthly, quarterly, semi-annual or annual charge adopted by a resolution of the board of supervisors.
The charges constitute a lien until paid against the property connected to the sanitary sewer  system,
and the amount thereof may be recovered by due process of law.  All water utilities supplying water
to users within the boundaries of any township shall at the request of the board of supervisors furnish
to the township, on or before the fifteenth day of the month following the month during which bills
are issued, a list of all water meter readings and flat-rate water bills and the basis for each flat-rate
water charge so that the data may be used in calculating rental fees. The township may pay to the
utilities clerical and other expenses incurred in the preparation of the lists.

 (b) Nothing in this section shall be construed to repeal or modify any of provisions of 66
Pa.C.S. (relating to public utilities).

 (c) All sewer rentals received shall be deposited in a special fund to be used only for the
payment of the cost of construction, reconstruction,  repair, operation and maintenance of the
sanitary sewer system.

 Section 2512. State and County Highways; Consents Necessary.- Sanitary sewers may
be constructed in or under any State or  county highway.  If the construction of sanitary sewers is
in or under county highways, the consent of the county commissioners of the county shall first be
obtained and, if the construction of sanitary sewers is in or under any State highway, the consent of
the Department of Transportation shall first be obtained.

 Section 2513.  Municipal Corporation; Municipality Authority; Agreements for
Connections; Appointment of Viewers.-

(a) Any township may by agreement connect with an
existing sanitary sewer owned by any municipal corporation or municipality authority for either
sewage collection or treatment purposes.

 (b) When any township desires to connect with the existing sewer of any municipal
corporation or municipality authority, a petition shall be presented by the board of supervisors to the
court of common pleas setting  forth the facts.   The court shall fix a day for hearing upon the
petition and direct public notice be given to all interested parties. If the court is of the opinion that
the connection can be made without impairing the usefulness of the existing sanitary sewer system,
it shall appoint three viewers to view the premises, investigate the facts of the case, assess the
necessary costs and expenses of making the connection and the proportionate part of the expense of
building the original sanitary sewer system upon the township, determine the proportion of the
expense for repairs which the municipal corporation or municipality authority and the township
shall bear and determine all other questions liable to arise in connection therewith.

 Section 2514. Report of Viewers.- The viewers shall report the results of their investigation
to the court, and the court shall confirm the  report within thirty days of its subnussion unless
exceptions are filed. Any interested party may appeal the disposition of filed exceptions.

 Section 2515. Acquisition of Existing Sanitary Sewer Systems.-

(a) The board of supervisors of the township in which the facilities are located may acquire all or part of an existing
sanitary sewer system or community subsurface sewage collection and treatment system.

 (b) Acquisition may be by either purchase, when the board of  supervisors and the owner
can agree on a price not exceeding the actual value of  the sanitary sewer system or part thereof to
be transferred, or by deed of  dedication to the township by the owners of the sanitary sewer system
or part thereof or by the exercise of eminent domain.

 (c) If any sanitary sewer system or community subsurface disposal collection and
treatment system is acquired by purchase or taking under this section, the cost of acquisition may
be distributed or assessed under this act as when a sanitary sewer system is constructed by the
township.

 (d) The rights, powers and duties of the board of supervisors with respect to acquired
systems are the same as exist with respect to sanitary sewer systems constructed by the township.

 Section 2516. Joint Sanitary Sewer Systems.-

(a) Townships may contract with other
municipal corporations and municipal authorities providing for the joint construction or maintenance
of sanitary sewer systems and for the connection onto existing sanitary sewer systems. The
agreements shall provide for  the apportionment of costs among the municipal corporations. The
board of supervisors may assess the township's respective portions of the costs, as may be legally
assessable, upon property benefited by the facilities.  Any portion of the cost not assessed or
assessable shall be paid by the respective municipal corporations under the agreement.

 (b) The municipal corporations joining or contemplating joining  in the project in order to
facilitate the building of the sanitary sewer system and in securing preliminary surveys and estimates
may by ordinance provide for the appointment of a joint sanitary sewer board composed of one
representative from each of the municipal corporations joining which shall act generally as the
advisory and administrative agency in the construction of the improvement and its subsequent
operation and maintenance. Members of the joint sanitary sewer board shall serve for terms of six
years each from the dates of their respective appointments and until their successors are appointed.
The joint sanitary sewer board shall organize by the election of a chairman, vice-chairman, secretary
and treasurer. The municipal corporations may in the ordinances creating the joint sanitary sewer
board authorize it to appoint an engineer, a solicitor and other necessary assistants and agree to the
share of the compensation of those persons each municipal corporation is to pay. The members of
the joint sanitary sewer board shall receive compensation for attending board meetings as established
in the budget that is prepared by the joint sanitary sewer board and submitted to and adopted by the
municipal corporations. The budget item providing for the compensation to members for attending
meetings shall not exceed a total of two hundred and fifty dollars ($250) for each member in each
year, but the members shall be entitled to actual expenses to be paid by the respective municipal
corporations the members represent.

 (c) The joint sanitary sewer board may adopt rules and regulations to govern its
proceedings and prepare and suggest measures and plans under which the joint improvement may
be completed and for the future development of  the system. It may prepare a joint agreement or
agreements for submission to and adoption by the municipal corporations defining the advisory and
administrative powers of the joint sanitary sewer board and setting forth: the consents of the
municipal corporations to the proposed improvement; the manner in which preliminary and final
plans, specifications and estimates for the proposed improvement shall be prepared and adopted and
in which proposals for bids shall be advertised and contracts let; the manner in which the costs of
the improvement and other incidental and preliminary expenses in connection therewith, and the
future cost of operation and maintenance, shall be equitably shared, apportioned and paid; and all
other matters, including the preparation and submission of annual and other budgets, that are
necessary or required by law to complete the proposed improvement and to assure future
maintenance and operation thereof. The board may not make any improvement or spend any public
moneys which have not first been authorized by all of the municipal corporations proceeding with
the improvement.

 (d) When it is necessary to acquire, appropriate, damage or destroy private property to
build any joint sanitary sewer system or improvement and the property cannot be acquired by
purchase or gift, the right of eminent domain shall vest in the municipal corporation where the
property is located. When it is necessary to acquire, damage or destroy property in any territory not
within the limits of any of the municipal corporations joining in the improvement, the right of
eminent domain shall be vested in the municipal corporation adjacent to the territory where the
property is located. Damages for any property that is taken, damaged or destroyed shall be assessed
under laws relating to the municipal corporations  exercising the right of eminent domain and shall
be paid by the municipal corporations joining in the same proportion as other costs of the
improvements.

 Section 2517. State Permit. - No sanitary sewer or plant may be constructed until plans and
specifications are submitted to the Department of  Environmental Protection and approved.


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