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Henrietta Environmental Action Team - HEAT
Sunset - Woods - Plowed Fields
Stopping low density urban sprawl, protecting the natural environment and saving wet lands from uncontrolled development


 Stockbridge Wastewater Treatment Facility Discharge Reroute

   The map below shows the proposed route of the Stockbridge Waste Water Treatment Plant discharge flow. The treatment plant uses a group of ponds and settling/aeration for treating the sewage while the resulting effluent is sprayed onto a series of farmed fields owned by the Village. This method of effluent disposal is viable only at certain times of year when the ground is neither saturated nor frozen. The ponds are designed with sufficient retention capacity so that discharge is affected only during those times allowed by permit. The growth of sewage flow from connections feeding into the collectors exceeded that permitted and Stockbridge was ordered to abate the condition. The solution selected by the Village was to obtain a permit to discharge the effluent on a year around basis through a long pipe to a creek or drain so that the need for the retention capacity is eliminated. This frees up the full capacity of the ponds so that increased sewage flow resulting from growth can be accommodated.


Stockbridge Sewage Discharge Map


   One of the options that the Village had among the eight(8) proposed by their engineer, was to use underground distribution (similar to a distribution field for a septic system) so that the excess capacity of the ponds previously needed for retention, could be utilized to increase the process capacity. The Village decided to choose the discharge pipe and drain through Henrietta Township to the Grand River as the less expensive (~$600,000.00) of the options. We feel there is more to this than is apparent on first review. The farmland owned by the Village and currently used for the surface spray disposal method would be freed up by the discharge option, thus allowing a windfall for the Village when this "prime real estate" is sold to developers.

  That a city in another county and/or township which is not planning for or controlling its own development can solve its problems by "flooding" them onto someone else is outrageous. Stockbridge has a viable solution to their problem in the underground disposal scheme. The users of the Stockbridge sewer system should pay the actual cost of the treatment plant and disposal system and the residents of Henrietta Township should suffer no effect whatsoever resulting from decisions made in Stockbridge. The potential exists for flooding of sewage effluent into adjacent low lying areas in Henrietta Township as well as creating offensive odors and possible health problems during times of treatment plant failure/overload and the resultant bypassing of the process stream. The Village alleges that since they will now have excess capacity in their ponds, there would be no need to bypass the process flow. Wait! The current "excess capacity" is what will allow for continued growth and will eventually be no more. Thus the threat of bypassing the sewage flow directly to the discharge and Henrietta Township is real.

  The Jackson County Drain Commissioner along with effected townships has filed suit to enjoin Stockbridge from proceeding with the project. We support the Drain Commissioner in this effort and hope that he can force Stockbridge to reevaluate their choices and opt for the underground disposal scenario. We will keep this site updated on this issue as developments unfold.


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