-The following article was submitted by Sixth District Delegate Bob Long about Baltimore Regional Water Governance Task Force- Public Discussion last week-
I attended the Baltimore Regional Water Governance Task Force meeting on October 18th at CCBC Essex.
The public discussions are about the future governance of our regional water and sewer system.
I voiced my concerns that it is important for our wastewater treatment plants to comply with regulations and serve all constituents effectively.
The Task Force needs to look at the reports from Maryland Environmental Services which clearly state the mismanagement of those sites led to the State bringing in an outside contractor.
Our State paid a lot of money to bring the Back River Wastewater Treatment Plant and the Patapsco Wastewater Treatment Plant up to standards.
I am very concerned about the possibility of raising the water rates for Baltimore County. It might be true that City residents have a higher water rate than County residents but it all balances itself out as County residents pay a higher rate on services from the City.
Our district cannot afford an increase on their water bill. Why should County residents be punished for Baltimore City’s failure? I previously wrote that I was cautiously optimistic of the Task Force, but I wanted to see more representation from Baltimore County. Unfortunately, we were not able to get that additional representation.
The Task Force should have been created to address the issues at these two wastewater treatment plants. Instead, it appears this Task Force was created to raise our water rates.
I will continue to monitor the recommendations made by the Task Force as well as the maintenance of Back River Wastewater Treatment Plant and the Patapsco Wastewater Treatment Plant. We have fought hard to get the Plant up to compliance.
Maryland Department of the Environment will be holding an informational meeting regarding the permit application for Back River Wastewater Treatment Plant.
This opportunity for discussion is open to the public. The meeting will be held on Wednesday Nov. 8 at 5:30 p.m. in the first-floor auditorium at Maryland Department of the Environment, 1800 Washington Blvd, Baltimore, MD 21230.