⚠ Protecting against a raw sewage disaster in NJ
⚠ A Monmouth County sewer line and pump station will be replaced
⚠ The state is kicking in $20 million in federal funds for the project

Gov. Phil Murphy has announced the state is committing $20 million in federal funding for the Two Rivers Water Reclamation Authority sewer/pump station project, that calls for more than 3,000 feet of damaged sewer line to be replaced under Pleasure Bay, and a main pumping station to be rebuilt and relocated out of a flood zone in Monmouth Beach.

During a visit to the area on Monday, the governor said the project will bolster the resilience of crucial wastewater and stormwater infrastructure while safeguarding the station and surrounding communities from future major storms.

"I know infrastructure like sewer lines and water pumps may not seem exciting, but this is a big deal for the 90,000 people across a dozen towns and two military bases that rely on the system," he said.

Things could get really stinky

Murphy said the sewer line is almost 50 years old and was damaged during Superstorm Sandy, and there’s a real risk it could rupture unless it’s replaced.

"And if it did, things would get ugly fast. Millions of raw untreated sewage would be dumped into the bay, and that could mean sewage is being sent back into people’s homes, literally," Murphy said.

Murphy noted the pump station, which is critical to keeping flood water out, could be flooded in another major storm and rendered completely useless, so it's vitally important to relocate it now.

"As the saying goes, the best time to fix the roof is when the sun is shining, so we are being proactive, all of us together, and replacing this critical infrastructure now, rather than waiting," Murphy said.


Not a matter of if

Murphy said with climate change, we know it’s not a matter of if, but when that next superstorm will hit.

“This federal and state investment for the Two Rivers Water Reclamation Authority will play an essential role in ensuring that coastal communities in Monmouth County are protected for generations to come,” said U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-NJ.

U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, D-NJ 6th District, added the project “will help make critical improvements to the sewer line and pump station that will safeguard our rivers and surrounding waters from a devastating sewage spill and future flooding events.”

The Two Rivers Water Reclamation Authority’s water treatment and collection systems serve 90,000 people in Fair Haven, Little Silver, Monmouth Beach, Oceanport, Shrewsbury, and West Long Branch. It also serves two military bases and six customer towns comprising of Eatontown, Red Bank, Rumson, Sea Bright, Shrewsbury Township, and Tinton Falls. Its facilities include 200 miles of sanitary sewer mains, 18 pump stations, and nine meter chambers.

The entire cost of the project is close to $85 million.

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