Sewer Feasibility Information


click here for the video link to

October 23, 2021 Public Informational Meeting





To:      The residents and property owners of Lyon Township, Roscommon County, Michigan, and any other interested parties. 

Please take notice that meetings of the Gerrish Lyon Utility Authority will be held at Gerrish Township Hall, 2997 E. Higgins Lake Dr. Roscommon MI 48653 at the below listed dates and times.

Monday JANUARY 10, 2022 9:00 am

Members of the public will only be able to speak at the meeting during the public comment portion of the meeting and such comment will be limited to three minutes per person. To provide for orderly public comment, a person wishing to speak during public comment must state their name and request to be recognized by the Board. The Board will recognize all persons wishing to speak during public comment.  

If, prior to the meeting, members of the public have certain questions or wish to provide input on any business that will be addressed at the meeting then such persons may contact the Township Board members through Lyon Township Clerk, by email, or by mail at: PO Box 48  Higgins Lake, MI 48627



Public Notice September 20.2021

It has come to the Township’s attention that a potentially misleading petition is being circulated in the Township about the possible GLUA Sewer project. The petition and the website that promotes it is encouraging people to sign the petition so that they can have a say in the project. Unfortunately what the circulator is not telling people is that by signing the petition they are actually objecting.  The petition suggests signers are only asking to have a say in the project, but the petition does not provide a way for people who are in favor of the project to say “yes.”  The petitions being circulated in opposition to the project do not just ask for a say, but specifically “object to the Sewer Project as planned…” Property owners should be aware that by signing this petition they are not just asking for a say in the project, but they are objecting to it.


Township residents who desire to have a say in the project and want the project to proceed can do so by signing a petition in favor of the project.  In order to provide a level playing field for those who want a say and want to say “yes”, sample downloadable petitions in support of the proposed GLUA sewer project are provided below.  The individual petition is for owners of single parcels, the multiple petition is for canvassing signatures from owners of multiple parcels.  Please contact Lyon Township with any of your questions.

Single Parcel in Support of the Sewer System Petition

Multiple Parcels in support of Sewer Project Petition



(click on the link to view)

State and Federal Government Contact List

Specifications for Septic Tank that is Compatabile with Proposed System


QA from Public Presentation on August 27, 2021


8-27-21 GLUA Public Presentation

 Horizontal Directional Boring

 Interactive GLUA Sewer District Map 

(you can zoom, hover, or type in your address to see if your property is in the proposed district)


Potential WWTP sites



GERRISH LYON UTILITY AUTHORITY MEETING MINUTES (click on the date to open the link)

June 28, 2021 Minutes

July 6, 2021 Minutes

July 12, 2021 Minutes

July 19, 2021 Minutes

July 26. 2021 Minutes

August 2, 2021 Minutes

August 9, 2021 Minutes

August 16, 2021 Minutes

August 23, 2021 Minutes

August 30, 2021 Minutes

September 13, 2021 Minutes

September 27, 2021 Minutes

October 4, 2021 Minutes

October 23, 2021 Public Presentation Minutes

November 8,2021 Minutes

December 13, 2021 Minutes




click here for Gerrish Lyon Utility Authority Articles of Incorporation





Lyon/Gerrish Township Sewer Feasibility Study


February 2020 Update



click above to view report


The draft Higgins Lake sewer feasibility study, also called a Preliminary Engineering Report (PER) was submitted to the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development (USDA-RD) last month. We expect the final report will be sent to the USDA this month, which will complete this phase of the project. The feasibility study was funded by a $30,000 grant from the USDA.


Representatives from Gerrish and Lyon Townships met with engineers on February 14 to discuss the project. As was presented at the October 2019 informational meeting, based on science and studies going back more than 50 years, there have been demonstrated negative impacts to the environment and the lake quality. The team feels it is important to continue investigating opportunities to protect Higgins Lake by installing public sewers.


The Townships are currently looking at the qualifications and experience of municipal financial advisors and bond counsel who can provide valuable information into project costs and financing options. We plan to have a team identified and engaged soon.


Additional work will take place as the team continues to gather information and inform the public about the project. Cost is a big question/concern for Townships and residents, and we will meet with agencies to discuss potential funding opportunities over the next couple of months.


The importance of public information and participation was also discussed at last week’s progress meeting. We anticipate having an informational spring meeting at a larger venue to accommodate more people who have questions or want to provide input. Web updates, like this one, surveys and mailings will continue providing the latest information for residents until the next public informational meeting.




Feasibility Study 10/28/2019 Presentation





Lyon Township & Gerrish Township 

October 28, 2019 

6:30 PM

Informational (Only) Presentation

Public Meeting

Feasibility Study

(Sewer Study)

Place: Lyon Township Fire Station

10555 N Harrison Rd, Roscommon MI 48653


August 22, 2019

As the summer season progresses, so does work on the Higgins Lake sewer feasibility study.  A large part of the effort is creating and evaluating concepts for collecting and treating wastewater for Higgins Lake. Our engineering firm, Fleis & VandenBrink, continues to develop, evaluate, and refine different types of wastewater collection and treatment systems.  Representatives from Lyon and Gerrish Townships continue to meet with F&V to discuss progress and provide input.  We anticipate conducting a public informational meeting this fall where updates will be provided as well as an opportunity for residents to ask questions.


In advance of the informational meeting, we are providing resources for our residents to learn about the water quality in Higgins Lake as well as information about how onsite septic systems work and the potential impacts to surface water quality.  Please take time to read the information below. 


******Click on the below titles to take you to the information******


Septic System Information


Septic Tanks Aren’t Keeping the Poo Out of Our Rivers and Lakes (MSU) – MSU publication from 2015 about septic tank density and bacteria. This is a quick and easy read; this article highlights that even properly constructed & functioning onsite systems don’t necessarily treat wastewater.


Nitrate in Drinking Water Fact Sheet (EGLE) – Drinking water wells can be impacted by septic systems when installed shallow or in high density areas


Septic Systems and Surface Waters (EPA) – Interactive web page with short descriptions of septic system operation in relation to nearby surface water


EPA’s Septic Smart for Homeowners (EPA) – Detailed information from the EPA about how septic systems work and how they are maintained


MSU Extension – Septic System Education (MSU)Michigan State University Extensions version of the EPA’s Septic Smart. Many good links and resources available.


Managing Household Wastewater in Sensitive Shoreline Areas (MSU) – Published in 2012, this article is a short and easy read and highlights the risk of septic systems along shoreline.


Managing Household Wastewater in Sensitive Shoreline Areas (MSU) – Published in 2008, the first pages of the article below provides additional information about the risks and maintenance of septic systems along shoreline.


Groundwater and the Rural Homeowner (USGS) – In-depth web publication about the Hydrologic cycle, groundwater-surface water and how groundwater issues occur


Health Department Sanitary Code (Central Michigan District Health Department) – The Sanitary Code for Roscommon County per the Central Michigan District Health Department. 


Detailed Studies on Higgins Lake


US EPA National Eutrophication Survey on Higgins Lake (EPA, 1975) – A baseline report created by the EPA on Higgins Lake in a nation-wide study of eutrophication


U of M Biological Station Water Quality Study of Higgins Lake, Michigan (UofM, 1985)  A report from 1985 from the University of Michigan and Central Michigan University as an intended baseline for future studies.


Effects of Residential Development on the Water Quality of Higgins Lake, Michigan (USGS, 2001) This report summarizes a five-year sampling effort by the USGS intended as a tool for regional planning for the protection of Higgins Lake.


Changes in nearshore water quality from 1995 to 2014 and associated linkages to septic systems in Higgins Lake, MI (MSU, 2014) This study concentrated on the ecological changes in the water quality of Higgins Lake and compares analytical results to the USGS report in 2001 to make conclusions of the water quality changes. There will be a 2019 update to this report completed by MSU.




July 01, 2019 


Representatives from Lyon and Gerrish Township met last month with our Engineering firm, Fleis & VandenBrink(F&V) and held the first of several progress meetings to discuss the Higgins Lake Wastewater Sewer Feasibility Study.  


As one of the first steps in completing an engineering study, we discussed potential areas that could be served by a sewer system.  We understand that one of the first questions our residents may have is who may be included in a sewer system.  Having clear parameters to determine which properties should be included is important.  Key factors were discussed, and we began prioritizing and focusing a potential sewer system in areas where it would be most needed and provide the largest benefit.  Some of the factors being evaluated include proximity to Higgins Lake, depth to groundwater, soil types, existing septic conditions, and size of property.   


F&V also shared that they have begun calculating the amount of wastewater that may be generated by a sewer system in the Higgins Lake area, as well as investigating how wastewater could be treated.


Although the feasibility study is underway, we are in the preliminary stages and no decisions have been made.  We know that sharing information and giving opportunities to ask questions is important. As we continue to make progress, we will provide more updates and have opportunities for our residents to ask questions.


May 15, 2019


We are excited to announce today that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded Lyon Township a planning grant to study the feasibility of a public sewer and treatment system in the Higgins Lake area. The study is in the preliminary stages.


Over the next four months, our Engineering firm, Fleis & VandenBrink, will prepare the study with input from Lyon and Gerrish Township officials. The study will investigate potential sewer service areas based on environmental, land use and public health impacts, prepare alternatives and costs for collection and treatment, and conclude with a recommendation to the Townships based on both need and cost considerations. 


Both Townships are committed to keeping residents informed and involved.  We are planning a public meeting at the end of August of 2019. Preliminary findings from F&V will be presented and residents will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide input.  Throughout the summer, we will provide additional updates on this website.


After the study is completed, the Townships will evaluate recommendations, costs, and potential funding opportunities, and decide if a sewer system should be pursued further.