Ocean County Getting $1.5 Million to Rehab Wastewater Treatment Systems

Ocean County is slated to receive $1,500,000 in federal funding championed by Rep. Chris Smith to rehabilitate key mechanical, electrical and structural systems at the Central Water Pollution Control Facilities (CWPCF) plant in Berkeley Township to help mitigate potential safety and environmental concerns. The funds were personally secured by Smith through his congressional earmarks that were signed into law on Saturday as part of a negotiated budget.

Commissioned in 1978, the CWPCF is a secondary waste treatment facility with a capacity of 32 million gallons per day. One of its primary digesters—an 85-foot diameter concrete sludge digestion tank with a liquid capacity of 1.2 million gallons—has been subjected to corrosive and destructive elements associated with the treatment of wastewater and is in need of major repairs.

“This critical federal funding will allow Ocean County to demolish, replace and rehabilitate the digester tank cover and other mechanical, structural, and electrical systems—which have reached the end of their useful life—to ensure continued efficiencies and effective treatment of wastewater,” said Smith.

Smith noted the project will also provide additional biogas storage volume that will allow the Ocean County Utilities Authority to decrease operational expenses by producing more electricity onsite via cogeneration.

Smith thanked the Ocean County Commissioners and the Ocean County Utilities Authority leadership and staff at the Berkeley site who gave him a thorough briefing on the needs and solutions that helped make the project eligible for the needed funding.

“This project will not only improve water quality of effluent that ultimately flows into the Atlantic Ocean and reduce air emissions, but also lower plant operational expenses by increasing onsite generation of electricity—which will help stabilize rates for residents,” Smith said.

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