New Report Details Salisbury Sewer Plant Violations; City Says I - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

New Report Details Salisbury Wastewater Treatment Plant Violations

Posted: 11/30/2017 20:17:00 -05:00 Updated:

SALISBURY, Md. - A new report by the Environmental Integrity Project is shining a harsh light on several wastewater treatment facilities around Maryland, including the sewage plant in Salisbury.

The report details a history of violations at the Salisbury plant that have occurred as the city's plant is updated.

The report cites everything from the Salisbury sewage plant discharging more than three times the legal limit of nitrogen last year to more than 75,000 thousand gallons of sewage overflowing last year as well.

They're big violations, but city officials say an agreement has been in place for years now to pay off these penalties and the problems will all be solved by the end of the year.

"This isn't new news," said Salisbury Director of the Department of Infrastructure and Development.

Pollack said the violations are being paid back through an agreement with the state.

"We budget for it every year, and we pay them timely," said Pollack.

Also in that agreement, the city has until Dec. 31 to bring the plant up to legal standards.

However, according to the report by the EIP, updates to the plant won't be completed until "about five months later than the December 2017 completion date that state officials expected."

Pollack says that's not the case.

"The new plant is up and running now. As of Tuesday of this week, it's accepting all the plant flow and is actually discharging clean effluence," said Pollack.

Pollack says it's smaller updates to the plant that weren't under deadline by the state that are set to be complete by May.

A five-year mess at the sewage plant finally unclogged, but this happy ending has come with a more than $300,000 price tag for neighbors.

"That is definitely relieving to know that we're not going to have to deal with taxpayers dollars paying for this over and over again," said Greg Binham.

The city says it understands taxpayer concerns, but stresses Salisbury City was not hiding anything. The records regarding the penalties are public.

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