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The City of Chicopee is pleased to announce the signing of the Seventh Modification to the City’s Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) EPA-Consent Decree. The CSO Consent Decree originally signed in 2006 obligated the City to remove all CSO flows from all location in the City by the year 2026. The CSO removal plan that in 2006 was estimated to cost $153 million dollars is now estimated to cost in excess of $400 million if completed as originally proposed.
Since taking office Mayor Richard J. Kos working with EPA officials has been successful in negotiating seven modifications to the original EPA-Consent Decree. The EPA-Consent Decree Modifications along with the implementation of an Integrated Environmental Management Plan now provides a practical and financially feasible approach to meet the environmental and public health needs of the City and addresses all water-related infrastructure concerns for the City.
The seven modifications has allowed the City to date, to remove in excess of 400 million gallons (77%) annually of CSO flow, and to extend the completion of the next major phase of the CSO work till 2035. Also the Integrated Management Plan when finalized will reduce the overall estimated cost by $100 million and allow the balance of the CSO work to be completed at a later date.
The Seventh Modification specifically calls for the following tasks to be completed:
“The City has and continues to meet its requirements as to dealing with the environmental and public health needs as this amendment and its predecessors allows the City to move forward in a way that minimizes the impact on its rate payers and residents,” said Mayor Richard J. Kos.