Harmar officials relieved to get $157,000 grant for stream bank restoration
Harmar officials have received a state grant to help remove sediment from it streams as part of complying with its state-mandated Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) plan.
The township received nearly $157,000 in state Watershed Restoration and Protection Program funding for stream bank restoration along Little Deer Creek.
“We really appreciate getting the grant money,” said Supervisor Bob Seibert. “It’s tough on budgets when you have to take your actual budget money and do this to comply with the MS4 regulation.”
The MS4 program is required by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to reduce runoff and other waterway pollution.
Township Engineer Matt Pitsch, of Senate Engineering, said the township will have a 15% match for the grant, which equals about $28,000. The work will be done next spring.
Work will include stabilizing part of the bank along Little Deer Creek in the area of Jacoby Road with new vegetation that will prevent sediment from being carried away during high water, Pitsch said.
“It’s supposed to kind of create a living buffer where during high periods of water there’s nice roots and vegetation,” he said.
Pitsch said the problem with sediment being carried downstream is it can fill in areas that weren’t meant to be filled in and can disrupt the ecosystem and aquatic life.
Seibert said he’s been vocal in the past about his concerns with the MS4 program because individual municipalities are straining their budgets to keep up with a government-mandated program.
“It’s very helpful to get some grant money to soften the impact to our township,” he said.
Emily Balser is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Emily at 724-226-4680, [email protected] or via Twitter .