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Berks County

NOTE: WREN has a NEW Website at www.waterwisepa.org, and as of March 2014, this site is no longer being maintained. Please go to our current website for local project information, and educational resources. Thank you.



Berks County:  Center for Excellence in Local Government - Albright College, Grant Amount:  $7,000

Project Title: Source Water Protection for Berks County
Contact: Paul Janssen, Director, Center for Excellence in Local Government, Albright College — 610-921-7246
Funded by LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Source Water Protection Education 2013-2014
Email: : pjanssen@alb.edu
Partners: Berks County Commissioners, Berks County Conservation District, Berks County Solid Waste Authority, Western Berks Water Authority, Reading Area Water Authority, Pennsylvania American Water Company, Hamburg Municipal Authority, City of Reading Public Works Department, Georgeadis Setly, Esq., and Dale R. Kratzer
Focus:  The Partners will form a county wide Source Water Protection Collaborative that will create awareness, programs, and policy which will enable the implementation of an effective Source Water Protection program for all of Berks County.  The coalition will form a Source Water Environmental Education Team (SWEET) that will conduct a series of public education and outreach events including a full day seminar on July 31st for municipal officials, water and sewer providers, a comprehensive web site, an informational brochure, and a public education program to be delivered to civic groups, schools, and municipal bodies.

View the Save the Date Postcard -7/31/13 Seminar; 7/31/13 Source Water Protection Educational Program (3.41 MB)

Berks (SC): Longswamp Township Environmental Advisory Council, Grant Amount: $5,000

Project Title: Making a Difference in Your Own Backyard: Rain Gardens for Water Conservation and Wildlife Habitat
Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Watershed Education to prevent Nonpoint Source (NPS) pollution 2012-2013
Contact: Kate Harms, 610-641-9521, Email: harmswy@yahoo.com
Partners: Lehigh Valley Audubon Society; Longswamp Township
Focus: The project partners will hold a community stormwater management workshop that promotes use of rain barrels and rain gardens to reduce stormwater runoff and replacement of lawn areas with native trees and plants to create Birdtown habitats. Workshop attendees will have a hands-on opportunity to learn while doing during the rain garden construction at township property in Longswamp. Rain barrels will be offered to pre-registered attendees at a nominal fee. Partners will create four strategically placed interpretive signs that address watersheds, wetlands, rain gardens, native plants, wildlife habitat and clean water. A follow-up evaluation will be conducted to track attendee installation of rain barrels and rain gardens.

View Longswamp Twp Project Press Release; View 5/20/13 Press Coverage by Reading Eagle; View the Evaluation Questionaire for Rain Garden Workshop; View Longswamp Township Rain Garden design plan; View Rain Garden Interpretive Sign; view Wetlands Interpretive Sign

Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, Grant Amount:  $5,000  
(Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lehigh, Montgomery, Schuylkill, Philadelphia)

Funding Source: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Watershed Protection 2011-2012

Contact:  Tom Davidock, Schuylkill Action Network Coordinator, 302-655-4990 ext.109

Email: tdavidock@delawareestuary.org

Partners:  Philadelphia Water Department, Schuylkill Action Network

Focus: This project will adapt the Philadelphia Water Department’s existing Green Guide for Property Management for use throughout Pennsylvania.  The revised tool, also titled "Green Guide for Property Management: A Guide to Help large Property Owners Identify Innovative green Projects to Reduce Stormwater Pollution, will be reprinted and distributed to watershed practitioners and commercial property owners during trainings and other special events.  The guide and illustrations will be converted to a downloadable electronic format making its use widely available, beyond the immediate target audience. Green Guide and illustrations are now available for download.   


Reading Area Community College, Berks Co, $4,995

Project Title:  Get Your Fill

GET YOUR FILLFunded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Protection Project 2008-2009

River, stream, watershed affected by this project:  Maiden Creek and Lake Ontelaunee

Partners: Reading Area Water Authority

Focus: conduct a college wide, year long "Get Your Fill" campaign (more) aimed at increasing understanding of the Reading Area Water Authority's role in providing safe drinking water to customers in the Maiden Creek/Lake Ontelaunee watershed and to motivate students about the steps they can take to protect their source water while at school and also after graduation.

Read their Final Report.

Contact:  Andrew Lapinski 610-372-4721, alapinski@racc.edu


Reading Area Water Authority, Berks Co, $5,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Protection Project 2008-2009

Project Title:  Maiden Creek Watershed Source Water Protection/Water Supply Signage

River, stream, watershed affected by this project:  Maiden Creek Watershed

Partners: Berks County Conservation District, Maiden Creek Watershed Association, Spotts Stevens and McCoy, Kutztown and Lyons Boroughs, Maxatawny Township and Emergency Management

Focus: install thirty drinking water supply area signs on secondary roads throughout the Maiden Creek watershed to raise resident and visitor awareness of source water/drinking water areas and devise a comprehensive “spill response strategy” including education and training for all emergency personnel about the importance of fast response to hazardous substance spills.

Read their Final Report.

Contact:  Dean Miller 610-926-5477, dean.miller@readingpa.org

Perkiomen Watershed Conservancy, Montgomery, Bucks, Berks and Lehigh Co, $5,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Watershed Protection Project 2008-2009

Project Title:  Stormwater Outreach to Homeowner's Associations

River, stream, watershed affected by this project:  Perkiomen Creek

Partners: Limerick and Lower Providence Townships

Focus: to educate Homeowner Associations in Limerick Township about the benefits of propely maintaining stormwater management facilities and develop a set of recommendations that can be distributed to and used by a municipality to encourage or compel associations to properly maintain stormwater basins, thereby improving water quality, adding critical habitat and saving the Homeowner Associations money.

See their ad, talking points, Powerpoint, resource list, press releases.

Read their Final Report.

Contact:  Crystal Gilchrist 610-287-9383 cgilchrist@perkiomenwatershed.org

Berks County Conservation District. $ 4,800

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Protection Project 2006-2007
Project Title:  Non-point Best Management Practice Calendar
Area to be protected:  Maiden Creek watershed and others
Partners:  Reading Area Water Authority, Penn State Cooperative Extension, Spotts, Stevens and McCoy

Focus:  develop a calendar that each month will highlight a different Best Management Practice installed at a Berks County farm, business or water supplier in the Maiden Creek and other watersheds in the County.  With illustrations and pictures about protecting drinking water supplies, the calendar, along with the District’s website, will be a tool for agricultural organizations and government agencies to educate citizens about source water protection.

Contact: Lyn O'Hare, cohare@countyofberks.com


East Greenville Borough Water Authority, Montgomery, Lehigh, Berks counties; $ 4,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Protection Project 2005-2006
Project Title:  EGBWA Watershed/Wellhead Protection Education and Outreach
Area to be protected: Upper Perkiomen Creek of the Upper Perkiomen Watershed
Partners PA Rural Water Association, Upper Perkiomen School District and Upper Hanover Township Authority
Focus: introduce source water protection education to area elementary students using a Talking About PA (TAP) Water Kit, curriculum guides and a poster contest. The partnership will also produce a display board and brochure highlighting the authority's existing SWP efforts and ways the community can get involved with future efforts.

Contact: Jim Fry, 215- 679-5194,email: egb@netcarrier.com


Perkiomen Watershed Conservancy , Montgomery, Bucks, Berks, Lehigh counties; $ 5,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Protection Project 2005-2006
Project Title:  Source Water Protection Education and Volunteer Action Program
Area to be protected: Perkiomen Creek
Partners: Natural Lands Trust, Philadelphia Water Authority, Aqua PA, Delaware Valley Earth Force, Montgomery County Conservation District, Lower Salford Township, Upper Perkiomen Trout Unlimited

Focus: hold Source Water Protection workshops emphasizing the source of local water supplies, challenges of maintaining a high quality supply, and the ways contaminants can be prevented from entering the water supply. Workshops will demonstrate ways citizens can protect their drinking water sources.

Contact: Crystal Gilchrist, (610) 287-9383,  email: cgilchrist@perkiomenwatershed.org


Berks County Conservation District. Berks, Lehigh, Schuylkill Co, $5,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Watershed Protection Project 2004-2005
Project Title: Blue  Mountain Watershed Summit and Berks Co. Innovative Stormwater Management Workshop
Areas to be protected: watersheds in Berks, Lehigh and Schuylkill counties
Partners: Spotts, Stevens and McCoy, Inc., National Audubon Society PA, Philadelphia Water Department, Albany Township, Bedminister Township, Schuylkill and Lehigh County Conservation Districts, Berks County Planning Commission, Berks County MS4 Steering Committee, Center for Community Leadership of Berks County, City of Reading, Muhlenberg and Lower Alsace townships, Wyomissing and Wernersville boroughs.
Focus: design and conduct two workshops: 1) a watershed forum to educate stakeholders about nonpoint source pollution issues, and 2) Innovative Stormwater Management Workshop aimed at engineers and municipal officials responsible for stormwater management in Berks County.
Contact:  Ryan Zerbe, 610-372-4657x208, email: rzerbe@countyofberks.com


Natural Lands Trust. Schuylkill, Berks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Bucks, Philadelphia counties; $5,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Water Protection Project 2004-2005
Project Title:  Water Supplier Lands Project
Area to be protected:  Source waters in SEPA
Partners: Natural Lands Trust, Philadelphia Water Dept, Heritage Conservancy, Brandywine Conservancy and Clean Water Action PA

Focus: highlight to local environmental organizations and municipal officials the need to protect buffer lands for public drinking water supply systems in the Delaware River Basin before they are sold for development. Produce a booklet on water supply lands.

Contact: David Harper, 610-353-5587,  email: dharper@natlands.org

PA Environmental Council, EAC Network, Berks County, $5,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Drinking Water Source Water Protection Project 2004-2005
Project Title:  Municipal Source Water Protection and Environmental Advisory Council Formation
Area to be protected:  Schuylkill River Watershed
Partners: Philadelphia Water Dept,  Schuylkill River Watershed

Focus: develop a Powerpoint presentation, Source Water Protection in Berks County, promoting the formation of muncipally based Environmental Advisory Councils (EACs) to accomplish source water protection initiatives in Berks County and the Schuykill River Watershed.

Contact: Jeanne Barrett Ortiz, 215-563-0250 x113, jortiz@pecphila.org

Berks County Conservation District. Berks County, $3,400

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Watershed Protection Project 2002-2003
Project Title: Maiden Creek Watershed Association Educational Materials
Area(s) to be protected: Maiden Creek Watershed
Partner(s): Berks County Conservation District, Berks County Conservancy, PA Department of Environmental Protection & Delaware Riverkeeper
Focus: place stream identification signs in the Maiden Creek Watershed and to develop outreach materials
Contact: Pamela Spayd, 610-372-4657 x 208, email: pspayd@bccd.org

District Township, Berks County, $4,000

Funded by: LWVPA-CEF WREN Project, Watershed Protection Project 2002-2003
Project Title: Watershed Education in Pike and District Townships
Area(s) to be protected: Pine Creek, Oysterville Creek, Swamp Creek, West Branch of Perkiomen Creeks Watersheds
Partner(s): District Township, Pike Township & Pike Oley District Preservation Coalition
Focus: hold public forums, produce newletters and develop a webpage
Contact: Dan Metzker, 610-845-7595, email: distwp@districttwp.berksCounty.org

Kutztown Borough recognized as a Groundwater Guardian Community since 1995
Explanation of Groundwater Guardian Award

Community Profile (Kutztown): http://www.groundwater.org/active/community.asp?id121

Contact:Keith A. Hill
Kutztown Area Wellhead Protection
45 Railroad Street
Kutztown, PA 19530-1112
610-683-6131 Fax: 610-683-6729
Email: khill@kutztownboro.org
Website: www.kutztownboro.org

Safe Drinking Water and Alternative On-Site Wastewater Technology
Funded by LWVPA-CEF WREN Project - Drinking Water Source Protection Project 1999

Focus: Failing on-site systems threaten drinking water safety in the Perkiomen watershed. The partners will conduct two workshops on how failing systems impact water supply and technologies available for correcting problems. Involved Bucks, Berks, Lehigh and Montgomery Counties.

Partners: The Perkiomen Watershed Conservancy, The Philadelphia Suburban Water Company

Grant: $2,350

Contact: Alexandra Curran, email: pvwa@pvwatershed.org, 610-287-9383, Website: http://www.pvwatershed.org

Berks County Conservancy
Funded by LWVPA-CEF WREN Project - Wellhead Protection and Drinking Water Education - 1998

Focus: This project supported educational activities that complemented water quality monitoring efforts at sites near a soon-to-be-permitted quarrying discharge. The group sponsored a series of presentations and public meetings to provide training for local community members, including outreach activities at Earth Day.

Accomplishments: A booth and lectures on groundwater issues were presented at the 1998 Earth Day at Kutztown University. Over 200 students were contacted during the day. Following a summer recess, a series of three presentations on local groundwater protection issues were made during Fall 1998.

1. To the student Environmental Science Forum. As a result, the group increased their monitoring and cleanup efforts at the Saucony Marsh.
2. To participants in the Senior Center Learning Program. Following the talk, the senior citizens decided to conduct a letter-writing campaign on protecting water resources at Saucony Marsh, Blue Marsh Lake, and Lake Ontelaunee.

3. To about 100 Kutztown University students, faculty, and community members. Two outcomes included increased volunteering on the Saucony Marsh
and exploratory talks that may add new partners to an independently funded water resources study.

Coalition Partners:
League of Women Voters of Berks County, Friends of
the Saucony Marsh, the Kutztown Wellhead Protection Program and the Environmental Science Forum of Kutztown University

Grant: $3,000

Joe Hoffman, 610-372-4992
Berks County Conservancy
960 Mill Road
Wyomissing, PA 19610

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