Press Release

March 4, 2011

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Benjamin L. Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-MD) today announced the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) has awarded Williamsport a $325,000 grant to rehabilitate the town’s aging sewer system.   

The funding will be used to renovate and upgrade four 1950s-era pump stations that have safety concerns and problems with low-performance.  The renovations will improve sewer service to 106 businesses and 561 households.  It also is expected to create 25 new jobs over three years as businesses open or relocate to Williamsport’s revitalized downtown area.  This project is part of the town’s plan to entice businesses to open or relocate in the downtown business district.        

 “Williamsport’s aging water infrastructure system is part of a nationwide problem in which many communities have deteriorating water and/or sewer systems that require greater investment,” said Senator Cardin, who is Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Water and Wildlife Subcommittee.  “This grant will provide important infrastructure improvements for Williamsport, helping to revitalize the downtown business district and bring new jobs to the area.

“Maryland cities and towns need to upgrade their water and sewer infrastructure but they can’t do it on their own, and rate payers shouldn’t have to bear the full burden,” Senator Mikulski said. “The Appalachian Regional Commission continues to provide the towns of Western Maryland with funding to enhance and upgrade their utilities, and I am pleased that we have been able to provide continued financial support to these local jurisdictions.”

In addition to the ARC grant, a USDA development loan will provide $1,545,000, bringing the total project funding to $1,870,000.  The ARC is a federal-state partnership that works with the people of Appalachia to create opportunities for self-sustaining economic development and improved quality of life.