STAFFORD TOWNSHIP — Next week, the township will start its first storm-related repair project that is not debris removal.

All of the grinder pumps responsible for sewage flow in the Cedar Bonnet and Mud City sections of the township were severely damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Sandy and need to be replaced, Township Administrator Jim Moran said.

The two waterfront sections work entirely off a group of grinder pumps that pump waste material to the main sewer line. There are 42 pumps between Cedar Bonnet Island and Mud City, many of which have been replaced recently, Moran said.

About 225 homes and a handful of businesses were affected, Moran said. Township public works crews go into the sections each day with a septic pump truck and pump the raw sewage out and into the truck, then take it to a disposal site, where it is pumped into the main sewer line.

“We were very fortunate that only a few sewer lines ended up opening up during the storm, because some of the homes there washed off the foundations. But we were able to get them capped and closed right away,” he said.

It will cost $885,000 to complete the project. The township recently bonded for the work, he said, and will wait for reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

With municipalities looking at picking up 25 percent of storm-repair costs while FEMA absorbs 75 percent, Moran said, the township will be responsible for more than $220,000 for just this project.

“We brought in engineers, had the system evaluated and, based on their recommendations and those of the manufacturers of the grinder pumps, it became clear we needed to replace them,” he said.

The township solicited emergency quotes for the replacement of the pumps and received four bids and awarded the contract to the lowest bid last month.

Contractors are setting up and mobilizing to start work next week, he said.

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