Robinson engineer Mike Meyer said last night that a newly completed stormwater project is working perfectly -- but has not met with the approval of the state Department of Environmental Protection.
The intent of the project was to keep runoff water from draining through an opening into the old Moon Run coal mine, but guide it instead to storm drains along Klamath and Algonquin drives. Mine drainage, which tends to be acidic and high in mineral content, is a major environmental issue in Pennsylvania.
Mr. Meyer told Robinson commissioners that he had just gotten a letter from DEP which said the work done "was not in compliance with the plan."
"I strongly disagree," Mr, Meyer said. "I was out there during a rain event, and the water was doing what the water is supposed to do."
Solicitor Sam Kamin noted that the DEP is requiring that the township produce a new plan for the drainage by July 31. Mr. Meyer said he will try to get pictures showing the water flow as soon as it rains again.
Mr. Meyer also noted that the DEP had inspectors on site the day the project was done, "which to me is not usual." He said he's been waiting two months to get another project inspected.
When the project was first being planned several years ago, the DEP wanted the storm water piped away, and the township's former engineering firm, Lennon Smith Souleret, drew up plans to do that.
The township balked at the cost, though, and Mr. Meyer -- of Remington Vernick & Beach, the firm that replaced Lennon Smith Souleret in early 2008 -- convinced the DEP to let the township attempt to solve the problem by grading a swale instead.