In Pennsylvania the Commonwealth is divided into several
different types of municipalities, among them are counties,
cities, boroughs, and townships. These municipalities are
further classified according to population. Somerset
Township is a Township of the Second Class. It is governed
by the Board of Supervisors which is comprised of three members
who are elected to staggered, six-year terms in at-large
elections. The Board is vested with the executive and
legislative power of the Township. Generally, the members
also hold the title of Roadmaster, which places on them the
responsibility for the maintenance of the Township's system of
126 miles of streets and roads. The Board also holds the
power to make appointments to other offices and to create
various boards, commissions and authorities.
All Township funds are annually examined by an elected Board of
Auditors, consisting of three persons. It is their
responsibility to assure that all public funds are properly
account for. Their annual report is published as a matter
of public record.
Voters of the Township also elect a tax collector for a
four-year term who collects real estate tax and per capita tax.
The board also appoints a solicitor who advises regarding legal
The Board meets at least once a month on the second Thursday at
6:30 PM in a meeting which is open to the public.
The Board of Supervisors may create special agencies, called
municipal authorities. These agencies are usually charged
with the responsibility of constructing and operating municipal
utility systems such as water and sewer systems, although in
some circumstances, they may also operate transportation systems
such as bus lines, airports, hospitals, port facilities, etc.
In 1970 the Somerset Township Board of Supervisors created the
Somerset Township Municipal Authority with the intent it operate
water and sewer systems in the Township. The Authority is
governed by a five-member Board appointed by the Board of
Supervisors to staggered, five-year terms. The Municipal
Authority meets monthly in the Municipal Building on the second
Thursday at a meeting open to the public. Currently, the
Authority operates the Wells Creek Sewage Treatment System, the
Listie Water System, the Somerset Correctional Institute Sewage
Treatment System, and in cooperation with the Borough of
Somerset, extensions of water and sewer lines in Somerset
Township that connect to the Borough's facilities.
Altogether, these systems consist of approximately 35 miles of
sewer lines, 1,000 sewer customers and 600 water customers.