Salem’s application for sewage plant triggers enviro, municipal and political turmoil

Mar. 17, 2024  PLYMOUTH VOICE.

Plymouth Michigan News


State of Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy is holding a Public Hearing, April 4


Salem Township applied for a permit for a wastewater plant with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE). Salem has requested authorization to discharge 840,000 gallons of treated municipal wastewater into Fellows Creek on a daily basis. A new 558 home development planned by Livonia builder Schostak Brothers requires water and sewer connections to the 1,400 acres of property along M-14 where the homes are proposed.

The State of Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) is holding a Public Hearing, April 4, 2024, on the permit application that will allow Salem Township to collect wastewater and discharge effluent after treatment into Fellows Creek, at M-14 and Napier Roads.

Friends of the Rouge a nonprofit 501(c) (3) organization founded in 1986 to raise awareness about the need to clean up the Rouge River in southeast Michigan has for years continually monitored  the progress of Salem Township’s application for a new wastewater treatment facility.

Their educational, professional, elected and volunteer executive members adamantly oppose the proposed the Salem Township Wastewater Treatment Facility. Their mission is to restore, protect and enhance the Rouge River watershed through stewardship, education and collaboration.

According to the FOTR website, Fellows Creek is one of very few Rouge River tributaries that still supports a diverse assemblage of benthic macroinvertebrates that provide food for fish and are a critical component of the ecology of the stream. The sensitive families include Perlodidae, Capniidae, Leptophlebiidae, Polycentropodidae, Molannidae, Limnephelidae, Sialidae, Unionidae, Corydalidae, Phryganeidae, and Philopotomidae.

“Due to the Fellows Creek’s unique importance as an ecological resource and the negative impact that the Wastewater Treatment Facility development and associated infrastructure will have on the health of Fellows Creek and the Rouge River watershed, FOTR recommends denial of this permit.”

Further, “Fellows Creek is a cold-water creek supporting Mottled Sculpins, the only place in the Lower Rouge they are found. There are 21 species of fishes we have sampled in Fellow’s Creek as follows: Gizzard Shad, Stoneroller, Common Shiner, Common Carp, Golden Shiner, Bluntnose Minnow, Fathead Minnow, Black Nose Dace, Creek Chub, White Sucker, Mudminnow, Mottled Sculpin, Green Sunfish, Pumpkin Seed, Bluegill, Northern Sunfish (Rare in the Rouge), Largemouth Bass, Black Crappie, Johnny Darter and the Blackside Darter”

Friends of the Rouge is supported by private, state, and federal grants, membership support, as well as individual and corporate donations.

According to reported figures, Salem Township has received three state grants totaling $35 million to bring water and sewer lines to the site of the proposed Salem Springs planned development by Schostak Brothers and Co., Inc. Bobby Schostak is former chair of the state GOP.

Residents and concerned citizens may submit comments on the draft permit before the April 4 end date by visiting:, select ‘Public Notice Search, Salem Twp USD WWTP, Permit No. MI0060338.

The EGLE public hearing will take place Thursday, April 4 starting at 6 p.m. at Northridge Church, 49555 N. Territorial Rd., Plymouth Township.



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