TREVORTON - The bids are in for a new wastewater treatment plant in Zerbe Township, and they are within the projected budget of loans and grants the township has received for the project.

Eight bids for the construction of the new plant were opened Wednesday during a special meeting of the township supervisors, with Walabax Construction Services, Inc, of Telford, the apparent lowest bidder at $2,649,400.

Also bidding were: HRI, of State College, $3,083,000; Hickes Associates, Inc., of Alexandria, $2,816,800; LB Industries, of Coopersburg, $2,859,300; Linde Corporation, of Pittston, $3,618,000; Quandel Construction Group, Inc., of Harrisburg, $2,962,700; PSI Pumping Solutions, Inc., of York Springs, $2,989.000, and Wickersham Construction and Engineering, Inc. $2,736.020.

Eight bids were also received to do the electrical work on the new treatment plant, with the low bidder being the Howard Organization, Inc. of Bloomsburg, at $297,700.

Other bidders were: G.R. Noto Electricial Construction, Inc., of Clarks Summit, $372,000; Hickes Associates, Inc., of Alexandria, $542,000; Lepley Electrical, of Lewistown, $380,812; Lobar, Inc., of Dillsburg, $401,300; Linde Corporation, of Pittston, $427,333; PSI Pumping Solutions, Inc. of York Springs, $369,000, and Mariano Construction, of Bloomsburg, $469,000.

Supervisors referred the bids to the engineering firm of William F. Hill and Associates, of Gettysburg, which has assisted Zerbe Township through the process of obtaining the funding from PennVEST.

All total, if the lowest bids are approved, it would put the total cost of the project at $2,947,100.

"We had some great competitive bids here and the price is just about what we expected," Hill told the supervisors. "We will give them a look and discuss it more at a conference call with PennVEST." The call is scheduled for today.

According to a project schedule prepared by Hill, the board could award the contract Sept. 10, and close on the PennVEST funding Oct. 15. Construction is scheduled to begin Dec. 1, with substantial completion by Dec. 1, 2014.

In April, the township received a PennVEST award of $4 million, including $2.9 million from a low-cost loan, and a $1.1 million grant. A joint press release from state Rep. Kurt Masser, (R-107), and State Sen. John Gordner's (R-27) noted the township's current wastewater treatment plant is 48 years old and includes "hydraulic overloads" which occur when too much water enters the septic system at one time.

It's also expected that the new plant will also handle expansion within the township, including the possible construction of restaurants and motels, if a second entrance to the Anthracite Outdoor Adventure Area is placed within the township borders.

At their last meeting, supervisors adopted a resolution saying that monthly sewer fees will be increased in order to pay back the loan.