Emmitsburg names $ 1.5 million in US bailout funds for water clarifier and pumping station | Politics and government

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With $ 3.1 million in funding from the American Rescue Plan Act in Emmitsburg, city commissioners have agreed to designate their first installment of $ 1.5 million for critical water and water supply projects. sewers.

Congress enacted the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021 to help ease the hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic and provided funding to local governments. Emmitsburg has received more than $ 3.1 million, CEO Cathy Willets said at the Emmitsburg Council of Commissioners meeting on Monday evening. The city received its first installment, more than $ 1.57 million, in July and will receive the second installment in as many as 12 months, according to Willets.

The funds can only be used for certain expenses, including investment in water and sewer infrastructure. The mayor and city staff recommended that commissioners vote to use their $ 1.5 million ARP funds to help cover the completion of the new water clarifier and pumping station projects. The commissioners unanimously agreed.

“The money would be used to cover deficits on both projects,” said Willets, describing the work as “desperately needed”.

The pumping station is estimated at over $ 3.65 million. The existing pump station on the west side of Creamery Road is old and needs to be replaced, according to Mayor Donald Briggs. It pumps the sewage to the sewage treatment plant on the east side of the road, he said. A USDA loan will cover more than $ 1.98 million from the pumping station project, Willets said, and the city also received two grants totaling $ 863,000, leaving the city about $ 807,000.

The water clarifier, which the mayor says will benefit the Crystal Fountain Road water treatment plant, is expected to cost $ 2.36 million. That figure is an increase from the original estimate of $ 1.5 million due to the findings of the preliminary technical and environmental report, according to city documents. The state provided $ 1 million for this project, leaving a shortfall of $ 1.36 million.

Briggs told the News-Post that he hopes the water clarifier and pumping station will be completed by spring or summer 2022.

“We are not going to waste time,” said the mayor.

Earlier in Monday’s meeting, the board discussed the need to improve infrastructure in general, which in turn could attract more residents and businesses.

“Retail follows the rooftops,” Commission Chairman Tim O’Donnell said, but acknowledged that more homes would affect the small town atmosphere of Emmitsburg.

Commissioner TJ Burns said he had seen six new businesses move to the city in the past two years, but said the city was failing to meet its market value for businesses.

“To do that, we need to bring in more homes,” Burns said. “The hardest part about all of this … is that we don’t have the infrastructure that can handle all of this.”

Burns suggested that infrastructure such as water and sewage needs to be dealt with by the city’s board of directors and staff before Emmitsburg can attract new business.

In other matters, counsel:

  • Discussed complaints from some Mount St. Mary’s University students partying off campus and acting haphazardly. Deputy Jason Ahalt of the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office said he spoke to those involved and believed they were headed in the right direction. Charges are pending for a property destruction case.
  • I heard Willets talk about “disposable wipes” and “Clorox-type cleaning cloths” clogging the wet well at the pumping station. City staff have asked residents not to rinse these items as they can lead to costly pump repairs.
  • Proclaimed October 2 Arbor Day.
  • Tree Planting Announcement with Stream-Link Education nonprofit on October 9 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Wastewater Treatment Plant at 16707 Creamery Road. Those interested can register at streamlinkeducation / org / volunteer.
  • Discussed a resident’s complaint about an abandoned building at 507 E. Main St. City staff said they tried to contact the owner to no avail and believed the basement was flooded . At its November 1 meeting, the Council of Commissioners will consider approving an ordinance declaring the building unsafe and unsafe.
  • After being re-elected on September 28, Commissioners Tim O’Donnell and Clifford Sweeney were sworn in.

Follow Mary Grace Keller on Twitter: @MaryGraceKeller


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