ANNAPOLIS, MD (May 11, 2005) – Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. announces Board of Public Works approval of a $600,000 grant to the town of Westernport in Allegany County for improvements to the town’s water treatment plant and another $350,000 to assist in eradicating combined sewer overflow problems there. The Board is comprised of Governor Ehrlich, Treasurer Nancy K. Kopp and Comptroller William D. Schaefer.
“These projects will benefit the general health of Westernport residents and provide for a reliable, high quality drinking water supply,” said Governor Ehrlich. “Along with other on-going efforts, completion of these projects will result in Westernport having a greater degree of compliance with federal and state requirements.”
The construction projects’ corrective measures will include upgrading the town water plant’s processes and finished water hydraulics-essentially replacing old facilities and equipment with current technology. To eliminate the combined sewer overflows, the work will entail separating and replacing pipes, installing new pipe joints, cross connections, manhole covers and walls.
Westernport’s existing sewer system is a combined system that discharges untreated low strength sewage into the Potomac River during high flow periods, especially in response to heavy precipitation.
“Westernport is very happy to receive these grants and we offer a hearty thanks the state,” said Mayor Donald T. Smith.
The total cost of the two projects is estimated at nearly $21 million. Westernport will contribute more than $14 million toward the combined sewer overflow work with federal grants assisting in financing the water plant upgrades.
Work in the water plant is expected to begin summer 2006. The combined sewer overflow project began last fall and is not expected to be complete until November 2007.