Glossary of Terms

Bay Restoration Fund: a State-supported program that provides funding to replace conventional septic tanks with nitrogen-reducing units and connect existing dwellings to public sewers.

Chesapeake Bay Critical Area: all land within 1,000 feet of the high water line of tidal waters of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.

Eligible community: areas in proximity to existing public sewer infrastructure where septic conversions are eligible for funding support under the County's Septic-to-Sewer Connection program.

Existing service area: the portions of the County connected to public sewer and/or where public sewer infrastructure exists.

Groundwater: underground water. Many communities rely on groundwater for drinking water supply.

Nutrients: naturally occurring chemicals, primarily nitrogen and phosphorus, present in wastewater. Excessive levels of nitrogen and phosphorus in waterways cause algal blooms, which deplete oxygen in water and decreases water quality.

On-Site Wastewater Management Problem Area: areas the County has identified in its Master Plan for Water Supply and Sewerage Systems as having indications of operational problems with septic systems.

Pumping station: a facility that transfers raw sewage from one area to another via underground pipes.

Septic tank abandonment: the process that happens after a septic tank is no longer in use. The County requires homeowners to abandon their septic systems when a property is connected to public sewer. This requires the services of a licensed disposal system contractor and/or a licensed liquid waste hauler. You can learn more about septic tank abandonment requirements and procedures from the Anne Arundel County Department of Health.

Surface water: above-ground bodies of water (e.g., streams, lakes, rivers, creeks, etc.).

Stormwater: water that comes from rain, snow or melted ice.

Water reclamation facility: a facility that cleans wastewater and returns it to the environment.

Water resilience: a community's ability to provide adequate water resources and for those resources to adapt to change, recover from stressors meet future needs.