by Lisa Tome
Cecilton Mayor Joe Zang is proud that his town is providing a solution to a big problem.
"We are extremely excited about it. We are doubling the water usage and clients. This is a tremendous opportunity and this doesn't (typically) happen," said Zang. "Since we have the ability to help, why wouldn't we?"
The town is the solution for the residents of outlying communities where water is tainted.
Work crews are ahead of schedule with the project, which will continue until 2018. The Maryland Port Authority is funding this work which will nearly double the water users on the Town of Cecilton water system. There are currently 298 water customers for the town. As of last week, 207 were set to go online with the new system. As many as 220 homes could eventually be connected. The Town of Cecilton will also take in about $6,500 per home in connection fees. Those funds will pay for planned infrastructure upgrades for the town.
Cecilton town clerk Kim Roland said that the hook ups will begin imminently. Because of the distance, two chlorination stations, which will be monitored by crews from Miller Environmental, will be part of the new system upgrade.
The earlier work included 32,000 linear feet of six-inch PVC distribution main, 350 water service mains, hydrants and valves for the communities of Bay View Estates, West View Shores, and Sunset Pointe. The scope of work includes the installation of 37,600 feet of 12-inch PVC water transmission main from the Town to Bay View Estates, West View Shores, and Sunset Pointe. That scope of work also included the valves, two chlorine injection stations, electrical controls and equipment, and site work.
This is part of a $14 million project with Cecilton providing water to homes where water is contaminated. Both the Maryland Department of the Environment and the Army Corps of Engineers have long been involved in this project. Many options have been discussed over the years including deeper wells for residents. The Town of Cecilton stepped in and offered to provide a water supply.
"We were the only likely solution. What we're doing is putting people at ease that their water is safe," said Mayor Zang.
Once all the infrastructure is in place, homes will be connected to the system a few at a time. There are three phases to each hook up.
Mayor Zang emphasized that this project was a partnership which included federal, state, county, and municipal government agencies working together.