Spray irrigation proposal town hall set for March 12 

Ocean Pines and Worcester County will jointly host a town hall on the proposed spray irrigation project on March 12 at 5 p.m., in the Assateague Room of the Ocean Pines Community Center on 235 Ocean Parkway.  

Attending from Ocean Pines will be Association General Manager John Viola, Golf General Manager John Malinowski, Course Superintendent Andre Jordan and Assistant Superintendent Justin Hartshorne, and from Worcester County Assistant Public Works Director John Ross, and Commissioners Chip Bertino and Jim Bunting. 

The Ocean Pines Water and Wastewater Advisory Board originally discussed the proposal late last year, to use highly treated effluent to spray irrigate the Ocean Pines Golf Course. Several neighboring courses already use county effluent for spray irrigation, a process endorsed by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), according to county officials. 

“Highly treated effluent” refers to the water meeting current MDE Bay Restoration standardsAccording to Worcester County Public Works Director John Tustin, extremely low levels of nitrogen and phosphorus in the effluent helped earn MDE tax exceptions that have saved Ocean Pines rate payers $5 million over the last 14 years. 

The proposed fiscal year 2020/2021 Ocean Pines Service Area budget includes $25,000 for a spray irrigation feasibility study, which is the next step in the process 

The town hall will include an overview of the proposal by county officials, followed by a question-and-answer session.  

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