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EAST DONEGAL TOWNSHIP ANNEXATION CASE (09/13/68)

decided: September 13, 1968.

EAST DONEGAL TOWNSHIP ANNEXATION CASE


Appeal from order of Court of Quarter Sessions of Lancaster County, June T., 1967, No. 145, in re annexation of portion of East Donegal Township to Borough of Marietta.

COUNSEL

Bernard M. Zimmerman, with him Zimmerman, Zimmerman, Myers & Gibbel, for appellants.

Theodore L. Brubaker, with him Bruce E. Cooper, for appellees.

Wright, P. J., Watkins, Montgomery, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, and Hannum, JJ. Opinion by Montgomery, J. Watkins and Hannum, JJ., dissent.

Author: Montgomery

[ 213 Pa. Super. Page 77]

This is an appeal by the Supervisors of East Donegal Township (Supervisors) and the East Donegal Township Sewer Authority (Authority) from the order of the Court of Quarter Sessions of Lancaster County approving the annexation by the Borough of Marietta (Borough) of 111.11 acres of contiguous land of East Donegal Township in Lancaster County. Pursuant to Section 426 of The Borough Code, Act of

[ 213 Pa. Super. Page 78]

February 1, 1966, P. L. (1965) 1656, 53 P.S. ยง 45426, in June of 1967 a majority of the residents of this 111.11 acres tract petitioned the Borough to annex said territory, which petition was approved by an ordinance regularly adopted by the Council of the Borough. The legality of the ordinance is no longer an issue in the case.

Only two issues are submitted to us: (a) the propriety of the annexation and (b) whether it is barred by the adoption of Proposal No. 6 on Local Government, amending the Constitution of Pennsylvania, by the electorate at the election held April 23, 1968.

Marietta Borough is bounded on the east, north and west by East Donegal Township and on the south by the Susquehanna River. Immediately adjacent to the western boundary line of the Borough lies a residential area known as Irishtown, or sometimes known as West Marietta. The total area of East Donegal Township is 22.6 square miles or 14,464 acres. The principal reason asserted by the appellants in attempting to defeat this annexation is that such annexation and the departure of the residents contained in the 111.11 acre tract defeats East Donegal's ability to furnish sewer facilities for its remaining residents on an economical basis, and that the Borough as a joint adventurer in the creation of a joint sewage disposal plant for both the Borough and the Township was under an obligation to refuse to grant the annexation petition.

The joint venture concept arises out of their participation in the Marietta-Donegal Joint Authority, the purpose of which is to build and operate a joint sanitary sewer disposal plant for the separate collection systems of the Marietta Borough Authority and the East Donegal Sewer Authority.

It was clear from the outset of the proposed plans that the per capita cost of the Township collection system would be greater ...


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