SNOW HILL – Worcester County continues to work toward extending sewer service to Lewis Road.
Bob Mitchell, the county’s director of environmental programs, provided the Worcester County Commissioners with an update of the project this week. Though the commissioners initially agreed to proceed with extending sewer to the Lewis Road area last January, funding for the proposed $1.6 million gravity collection system and pump station has not yet been acquired.
Mitchell said the county was notified in June that the project did not qualify for funding through a Maryland Water Quality Financing Administration program.
“It’s a pretty competitive process,” he said.
According to Mitchell, other applicants included major cities that had some massive infrastructure systems with big problems. In the Lewis Road community, residents have access to county water but continue to await sewer service to replace failing septic systems.
“Absent clear and present danger, and we’ve already hooked them up to water, the scoring probably wasn’t such that we received funding,” Mitchell said.
He said that he and Public Works Director John Tustin were now exploring other potential funding sources through the Maryland Department of the Environment and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
“We’re scrappers we don’t give up,” Mitchell said.
He said those funding streams, however, would require an environmental report. Mitchell said that while his staff was capable of completing the report, he would have to re-prioritize projects to get it done. He said Davis, Bowen & Friedel was already familiar with the project, as the company prepared the preliminary engineering report, and could do the work for $6,500.
The commissioners voted 6-0 to allocate $6,500 to have the contractor complete the environmental report.