Press Release

ANNAPOLIS, MD (January 7, 2004) – Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. announced Maryland Board of Public Works approval of a $150,000 grant to the town of Westernport in Allegany County for improvements to the town’s combined sewer system.

Presently, the town has a system that combines its stormwater and sanitary sewer functions. In times of heavy precipitation, the system overflows into local waterways, causing potential health impacts and dumping excessive nutrients into the water. Excess nutrients lead to degraded water quality, which contributes to the impairment of aquatic resources.

“This project will benefit the general health of the public and improve water quality in the George’s Creek drainage basin and the upper Potomac River,” Governor Ehrlich said. “As an added result, Westernport will also come into compliance with state and federal requirements. Additionally, this effort demonstrates Maryland’s commitment to systematically eliminating sewage overflows.”

The construction project’s corrective measures will include separation and replacement of pipes, installation of new pipe joints, manhole covers and walls.

“Westernport is very happy to receive this grant,” said Mayor Donald T. Smith.

The total cost of the project is estimated at more than $1.5 million. Westernport will contribute roughly $1 million toward the total with the remainder coming from future actions administered through the Maryland Department of the Environment’s Water Quality Infrastructure Program.