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Manchester moves ahead on stormwater, trash, other business

White Pine Construction, of Finksburg, was awarded the construction contract for the Whispering Valley stormwater management facility, located at Md. 30 and Michelle Road in Manchester.

The project is a partnership between the Town of Manchester and Carroll County’s Bureau of Resource Management. In September, the county agreed to purchase the 3-acre property from a Manchester resident for the project to expand the stormwater facility, which was built in the 1980s.

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The retrofit will approximately double the size of the facility. Construction began in December and a completion date has not yet been listed on the bureau’s project website.

An entrance and exit for the project will be located off of Md. 30, across from Thomas Tree Farm and the deadline for constructing the entrance was listed as Jan. 1.

The total budget is $87,445 for engineering and $798,643 for construction. A $375,000 grant from the Department of Natural Resources was awarded for the construction costs, according to the county’s website.

Councilman Vince Pacelli asked if the work would affect access to Michelle Road. Miller said all work would take place behind the homes, so residents on Augusta and Michelle Roads should not have problems with access.

Stormwater facilities are designed to capture polluted runoff water and filter it through physical or biological methods. In areas surrounding the Chesapeake Bay, federal and state mandates set obligations for county stormwater systems

In 2019, Carroll County decided to challenge a Maryland court’s ruling in a disagreement between the county and the Maryland Department of the Environment over the permit that governs Carroll’s stormwater system.

The county expects to hear in June 2020 whether the U.S. Supreme Court will take the case.

Trash Services

The Manchester Town Council voted unanimously to go with a five-year contract to continue trash service with Hughes Trash Removal.

Hughes has been the town’s longtime contractor, and was the only company to submit for the town’s consideration.

The council asked for options on pricing for a 3-year and 5-year contract. Kelly Baldwin, Director of Finance, recommended the council go with the 5-year contract.

Town Administrator Steve Miller said Hughes has been good to work with over the years and consistent about cleaning up after themselves when needed.

BGE agreement

At a future meeting, the council will consider whether to grant a perpetual agreement to BGE related to gas lines.

The agreement currently needs renewal every 50 years.

Megan Eaves, external affairs manager with BGE, attended the council’s December meeting to answer any questions if needed. She said BGE had decided to come to the town with the matter because most municipalities have perpetual agreements.

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Miller said the basic idea was that the agreement gives BGE the right to run the gas lines and repair them.

The town attorney reviewed the 50-year agreement and had no problems with it, Miller said, but he would reach out about the perpetual one as well. The council will revisit the matter at their January meeting.

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