Manheim Area Water & Sewer Authority (MAWSA) is a small, self-operating, non-PUC regulated, municipal water and wastewater Authority supplying approximately 3,100 water and 2,300 wastewater customers in the Manheim area (Manheim Borough, and portions of Penn and Rapho Townships, in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania). Incorporated on October 26, 1939, our mission is “to provide safe and reliable water and wastewater services in an efficient, cost effective and environmentally friendly manner resulting in a high level of satisfaction among our customers.”

We are run by an appointed Board of 7. There are 5 representatives from Manheim Borough, 1 from Penn Township, and 1 from Rapho Township. The board members make up several committees, and oversee an administrative and service team, as well as partner with professional service entities to fulfill the mission “to provide safe and reliable water and wastewater services in an efficient, cost effective and environmentally friendly manner resulting in a high level of satisfaction among our customers.”


Serving a variety of customer types such as; residential, commercial, and industrial, we also receive and treat an average of 83,000 gallons of hauled waste from multiple haulers and sites.


The water plant processes an average of 600,000 gallons of water per day (GPD) with a permitted capacity of 1,063,000 GPD. 

MAWSA utilizes 2 wells drilled into the Eplea formation aquifer, which lies approximately 200 feet below the Earth’s surface. Raw water is drawn, treated and stored, for transmission to our customer base. Having a safe source of water supply is very important to what we do, and we encourage all to protect ground water sources. Learn more about source water protection here, and more about water testing and quality here.


Sewage treatment is a multi-stage process to renovate wastewater before it re-enters a body of water. The goal is to reduce or remove organic matter, solids, nutrients, disease-causing organisms and other pollutants from wastewater. Each receiving body of water has limits to the amount of pollutants it can receive without degradation. Manheim Area Water & Sewer Authority Wastewater Treatment Plant must hold a permit listing the allowable levels of BOD, suspended solids, coliform bacteria and other pollutants. The discharge permits are called NPDES permits which stands for National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System. Final treatment focuses on removal of disease-causing organisms from wastewater. Treated wastewater is disinfected by adding chlorine.

The wastewater plant processes an average of 800,000 GPD with a  permitted capacity of 2,300,000 GPD hydraulic and organic capacity.


MAWSA’s wastewater treatment plant can receive both Standard and Non-Standard Waste based on an approved permit.

Standard Waste: septage, holding tank, portable toilet, and municipal sludge

Non-Standard Waste: landfill leachate, wash waters and condensates, industrial sludge and wastewater, miscellaneous waste, and industrial holding tank

Processing and disposal of sludge is one of the most serious problem encountered in wastewater treatment in terms of environment, technology and budget. Sludge stabilization and associated cost represents a major part of the total cost in any wastewater treatment plant, it can account for 50-60% of the total expense of wastewater treatment plant operating budget. Sludge arising during treatment of municipal wastewater presents a valuable source of organic matter, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and some trace elements. Wastewater treatment plants’ optimum solution for disposal of sludge is in agriculture.

MAWSA is committed to the environment and uses land application for its sludge disposal. The Authority operates under PA DEP NPDES permit for disposal of Class “B “sludge.

Interested in participating in our hauled waste program? Click here to learn more.


The treatment process produces a sludge which has to be disposed of. MAWSA’s sludge is specially treated to allow the end product to be utilized for land application, which is more environmentally friendly than landfill disposal. Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) regulates use of sewage sludge in agriculture to prevent harmful effects on soil, vegetation, animals and humans. In particular it sets maximum values of concentrations of heavy metals and bans the spreading of sewage sludge when the concentration of certain substances in the soil exceeds these values. Land application of raw or treated sewage sludge can reduce significantly the sludge disposal cost component of sewage treatment as well as providing a large part of the nitrogen and phosphorus requirements of many crops.


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