401 North Centre Street
P.O. Box 1163
Pottsville, PA 17901-7163
T: (570) 622-0513
F: (570) 622-3815
Hours: Mon – Fri 8am to 4pm

About Us

Greater Pottsville Area Sewer Authority The Greater Pottsville Area Sewer Authority (Authority) was duly formed under the provisions of the Pennsylvania Municipality Authorities Act (53 Pa. C.S. Ch. 56), as amended. The original Articles of Incorporation in the name of the Greater Pottsville Area Sewer Authority having been filed with and approved by the Department of State of the Commonwealth on October 27, 1970.

The Authority is governed by a Board of Directors composed of seven members, five of whom are appointed by the City of Pottsville, one by the Port Carbon Borough, and one by the Palo Alto Borough.

The service area of the Authority extends through a number of municipalities, namely the City of Pottsville and the Boroughs of Port Carbon, Palo Alto, Mechanicsville, and Mount Carbon and portions of the Townships of Norwegian, North Manheim and East Norwegian.

Treatment Facilities

The Authority’s 8.2 MGD (million gallon per day) wastewater treatment plant utilizes the secondary treatment activated sludge process, which provides effective and reliable treatment. In this process, microorganisms are mixed thoroughly with the organics so that they grow by using the organics as food. As the microorganisms grow and are mixed by the agitation of the air, the individual organisms clump together (flocculate) to form an active mass of microbes called activated sludge. The wastewater flows continuously into an aeration tank where air is introduced through diffusers located near the bottom of the tank that mix the activated sludge with the wastewater and supply the oxygen needed for the microbes to break down the organics. The mixture of activated sludge and wastewater in the aeration tank is called “mixed liquor”. The mixed liquor flows from the aeration tank to a clarifier where the activated sludge is settled. Most of the supernatant is returned to the aeration tank to maintain a high population of microbes to permit rapid breakdown of the organics. Because more activated sludge is produced than can be used in the process, some of the return sludge is diverted or “wasted” to the sludge handling system for treatment and disposal.

Collection System

The wastewater generated from these communities is conveyed to the Authority’s Main Treatment Plant and the West End Pump Station through a combined sewage and storm water collection and conveyance system, which includes 6-inch through 60-inch pipe and a number of various stone arch conduits. The total system is approximately 68 miles in length. Included in the Main Treatment Plant service area are four (4) pump stations in which two (2) are located in the Forest Hills section of Pottsville, one (1) in Mount Carbon, and the West End Pump Station.

The Authority operates twenty-two (22) storm water diversion structures in the combined conveyance system in accordance with its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit. Storm water flows are diverted to the West Branch of the Schuylkill River from the West End Pump Station service area and to the Schuylkill River and local tributaries in the Main Plant service area.

The Authority is responsible for the care and maintenance of the sewer system within the limits of the City of Pottsville, Borough of Port Carbon, Palo Alto, Mount Carbon, and Mechanicsville, and in the surrounding municipalities served by the system. The entire system is inspected and maintained on a regular basis by the sewer maintenance crew. Diversion manholes are checked daily, weekly or monthly, with monthly inspection reports forwarded to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

The system is a combined storm and sanitary sewer system consisting of collectors and interceptors ranging in size and material. The portions of the system installed after 1972 are generally in good condition, and the older stone arch culverts are in varying conditions of repair requiring regular maintenance and rehabilitation.

The sewer maintenance crew continually performs repairs within their capabilities. Many of the corrective measures involve replacing the existing combined sewers with parallel storm and sanitary sewer lines. The net result of these efforts is a slow but persistent separation of storm and sanitary flows, stabilizing or even lessening wet weather inflows to the Authority’s treatment facility.