AVALON - At its Nov. 13 work session, Avalon Borough Council discussed the need for an “infiltration and inflow study” of the sewer system.
The Cape May County Municipal Utilities Authority (MUA) spreads its charge to individual municipalities based on each municipality’s share of total wastewater flow to the MUA. In recent years, some of the county’s municipalities have seen spikes in their share of total wastewater flow, leading to unbudgeted increases in fees.
Like Avalon, Middle Township has recently undertaken a study of flows from its aging sewer system. What both towns are seeking is evidence of groundwater infiltration or stormwater inflow that is inappropriately entering the sewer system and causing higher MUA costs.
The nature of the activity makes it almost a zero sum effort, since a fix in one municipality that reduces inflation and inflow to the sewer system may mean a higher share and higher fees in another participating municipality.
In an era of high groundwater levels and increasingly severe rain events, the push is on to reduce inappropriate flows to the MUA.