Westernport battling water, sewer issues

Ronda Wertman
Special to the News Tribune
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WESTERNPORT -- Despite water and sewer projects ongoing throughout Westernport, there is still much work to be done.

“We’re having failures all over town,” said mayor Laura Freeman-Legge recently of the conditions of the sewer lines.

Concern for the increasing number of problems has prompted the USDA to allow the town to pursue engineering for the struggling system.

Several residents have contacted the town recently with concerns for sewer back-up into basements, prompting one family who recently moved to Division Street to have to stay at a hotel.

Water run-off is also a concern as residents noted that the storm drain at Walnut and Rock Street can’t handle the volume of water and is overflowing down nearby driveways, resulting in basement flooding.

In preparation for Hurricane Ida the town spent two days distributing and picking up sandbags to help protect properties from run-off during the especially heavy rains.

Carl Belt will be working on Lincoln Drive to replace the sewer line from Lincoln Street to Park Street.

Belt will also be starting construction on Phase 4 of the water project in the Wood Street/Maryland Avenue area. Phase 5 is expected to get underway next spring to summer. As the phases are finished, the affected streets will be paved.

The town is continuing it efforts for funding the demolition of 327-329 Maryland Avenue, with hearings held for a possible Maryland Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

“We’ve applied multiple times for this and been denied for different reasons,” said Legge.

Another CDBG application is being submitted to the construction of a new salt dome.