TMDL Costs Remain a Challenge for Anne Arundel County

A November 22 Capital article highlights Anne Arundel County’s challenge in funding its requirements under the federally mandated Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL).  The article discusses Anne Arundel’s Phase II Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP).  Anne Arundel’s WIP will primarily focus on septic system upgrades, wastewater treatment plant upgrades, and stream restoration to meet its nitrogen, phosphorous, and sediment TMDL goals.  One of the biggest challenges facing the County is the cost – early estimates of the County cost were around $1.8 billion.

The county already knows how to pay for some of the work, such as sewage plant upgrades. But for most of it, the financing hasn’t been worked out yet.

“There are difficult decisions that need to be made,” said Ron Bowen, the county’s public works director.  …

The septic systems alone could cost $760 million – and even more down the road if construction costs rise.

Bowen acknowledged the plans will be expensive and difficult to realize in time. He said the cost would be “a very sizable investment that would challenge any local jurisdiction.”

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