County ap­proves SKI sewer con­struc­tion bids

Record Observer - - News - By MIKE DAVIS mdavis@kibay­

KENT IS­LAND — The Queen Anne’s County Com­mis­sion­ers ap­proved three con­struc­tion con­tract bids as­so­ci­ated with the South­ern Kent Is­land San­i­tary project dur­ing its Tues­day, Aug. 23, meet­ing in Cen­tre­ville. The bids ap­proved to­tal more than $25 mil­lion. The com­mis­sion­ers ap­proved the con­tracts in a 3-2 vote with Com­mis­sion­ers Steve Wil­son and Robert Buckey op­pos­ing.

The county re­ceived six bids to­tal for the three projects for phase one of the four phase sewer project. The bids re­ceived were for sep­tic tank ef­flu­ent pump in­stal­la­tion, com­mu­nity mains in­stal­la­tion and the trans­mis­sion main in­stal­la­tion. Cole Ven­tures of Annapolis won the STEP in­stal­la­tion con­tract with bid of $15,600,150. Schum­mer Inc. of Mayo won the com­mu­nity main in­stal­la­tion con­tract with a bid of $6,191,750 and the trans­mis­sion main in­stal­la­tion con­tract with a bid of $7,025,316.

All six bids were ap­proved by the county at­tor­ney as well as the Mary­land Depart­ment of the En­vi­ron­ment. The bids were ap­proved by the com­mis­sion­ers on the con­di­tion that each ap­proved bid is again ap­proved by MDE.

Phase one, which has an an­tic­i­pated be­gin­ning date around Novem­ber, County Ad­min­is­tra­tor Gregg Todd said, in­cludes the Kent Is­land Es­tates and the Ro­man­coke on the Bay com­mu­ni­ties. The sub­di­vi­sions af­fected by the re­main­ing three phases are as fol­lows: Tower Gar­dens, phase two; Kent­morr and Queen Anne Colony, phase three; and Sunny Isle of Kent and Ch­e­sa­peake Es­tates, phase four.

Due to fail­ing on-site sep­tic dis­posal sys­tems caus­ing some res­i­dents to have raw sewage in their back­yards, as well as trou­ble sell­ing their prop­er­ties be­cause of the prob­lem, the es­ti­mated 10-year to­tal project will cre­ate on-site San­i­tar y Tank Ef­flu­ent Pump (STEP) sys­tems. The nine com­mu­ni­ties to re­ceive fu­ture ser vice com­prise 1,518 ex­ist­ing sin­gle fam­ily res­i­den­tial homes, eight non-res­i­den­tial uses and a max­i­mum of 632 va­cant in­fill lots.

Pub­lic sewer in­fra­struc­ture will be cre­ated dur­ing phase one, in­clud­ing the cre­ation of the trans­mis­sion force main along Mary­land Route 8 needed for the re­main­ing three phases. The eight-mile sewer trans­mis­sion main will ex­tend from the county’s en­hanced nu­tri­ent re­moval waste­water treat­ment plant. On­site STEP sys­tem in­stal­la­tion will take place, ser ving about 775 prop­er­ties. Phase one is es­ti­mated to be com­pleted in five years.

When all phases of the san­i­tary project are com­pleted about 775 im­proved prop­er­ties will re­ceive a STEP sys­tem. The project is be­ing paid for through a Bay Restora­tion Grant through the Mary­land Depart­ment of the En­vi­ron­ment and a Wa­ter Qual­ity re­volv­ing loan. Work­ing with MDE, the county in­creased its Bay Restora­tion Grant from $7,750 per home to $10,000 per home, to­tal­ing $15,260,000 for the life of the project, Todd said.

Funds from new users hooked up to the op­er­a­tion also will be used to pay for the project. The spe­cial as­sess­ment project, which means its paid for by the new users, will in­clude a $70 per month debt pay­ment for in­fra­struc­ture with a re­main­ing per month fee to go to­ward op­er­a­tion and main­te­nance of the new sewer sys­tem.

Todd said that MDE has 45 to 60 days to ap­prove the three bids the com­mis­sion­ers ini­tially ap­proved, and then, if ac­cept­able, con­struc­tion can be­gin.

The county worked with MDE to lower the per monthly cost for house­holds as ini­tial project bids came in higher than an­tic­i­pated. The county is aim­ing for home­owner as­sess­ments to be about $100 per month.

A doc­u­ment on the county web­site,, cre­ated by the county’s Depart­ment of Hous­ing and Com­mu­nity Ser­vices lists var­i­ous fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance meth­ods for in­di­vid­u­als af­fected by the SKI project. Po­ten­tial fund­ing sources in­clude grants and loans through the U.S. Depart­ment of Agri­cul­ture’s Ru­ral De­vel­op­ment 504, the Mary­land Depart­ment of Hous­ing and Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment and Queen Anne’s County’s re­volv­ing loan funds. Fur­ther in­for­ma­tion re­gard­ing specifics of the fi­nanc­ing as­sis­tance can be found on the doc­u­ment or by con­tact­ing Mickey Lo­max or Mike Clark at 410-758-3977.

Fol­low Mike Davis on Twit­ter: @mike_k­ibay­

Phase One of the South­ern Kent Is­land Sewer Project in­cludes the com­mu­ni­ties of Kent Is­land Es­tates and Ro­man­coke on the Bay.

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