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Reading wastewater $27M loan to prevent sewage discharge into Schuylkill

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Reading received a $27 million loan to complete upgrades to its wastewater treatment plant on Fritz Island that it is required to fix under a federal consent decree.

The loan was awarded at a meeting by the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority. The money is in addition to a $121.8 million loan previously approved by the state agency Pennvest, Pennsylvania’s Infrastructure Investment Authority.

The money will be used to address numerous discharge issues at the Fritz Island solids and liquids plants, including construction projects to prevent the discharge of sewage into the Schuylkill River, according to a news release.

The city’s sewer system serves more than 22,000 customers, including businesses, in the city of Reading and additional customers in other municipalities.

“Our residents depend on the efficient operation of this plant for clean water and a functional sewer system,” said state Sen. Judy Schwank (D-Berks). “These upgrades are critical to the future of the plant.”

Pennvest funding is from state taxpayers, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency grants and repaid Pennvest loans.

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