.02 General Provisions.

A. Objective of County Plan. The objective of the county plan is to develop the water supply and sewerage systems in a way consistent with county comprehensive planning. The plan shall be used as a tool to implement the county development policy so that:

(1) An ample supply of water may be collected, treated, and delivered to points of use;

(2) Waste water may be collected and delivered to points best suited for waste treatment and disposal or for re-use;

(3) Waste water can be either treated before any discharge to State waters, in compliance with applicable water quality standards and discharge permit conditions, or disposed of to minimize most effectively adverse effects on legitimate water uses. Consideration shall be given to related aspects of land use, zoning, population estimates, engineering and economic factors, and all governmental, industrial, and other plans for privately owned facilities regarding water and sewerage at any level.

B. County Government Required to Develop Plans. The county governing body is the coordinating agency required to develop county water and sewerage plans. These plans shall incorporate all or part of subsidiary plans of the towns, municipal corporations, sanitary districts, privately owned facilities, and local, State, and federal agencies having existing, planned, or programmed development within the county. The governing body shall give notice to these officials and entities and they shall be provided an opportunity to be heard.

C. Annual Review of Plan. The county plan shall be reviewed by the governing body at least annually. A report of the review, together with amendments to or revisions of the plan as adopted by the governing body, shall be submitted to the Department.

D. Comprehensive Planning Agencies Shall Be Consulted. Every official planning agency having any immediate jurisdiction in a county, including those comprehensive planning agencies with multi-county or regional jurisdiction, shall be consulted by the governing body in connection with the preparation, amendment, or revision of county plans. A statement that the above agencies have been consulted shall be attached.

E. Public Hearings on Amendments Required. A public hearing shall be held on all amendments and revisions to the county water and sewerage plan. The Department shall receive prior written notice of all public hearings on plans, amendments, or revisions.

F. Sanitary Facilities Fund. The planning part of the Sanitary Facilities Fund established under Environment Article, §9-218, Annotated Code of Maryland, shall be available to the Department to finance planning for water and sewerage facilities including the preparation, amendments, and revisions of county plans. The Department is authorized to use funds appropriated in the program of the annual State operating budget, which provides for general local health services for this purpose. When so used, the proportion of State, federal, and local funds, respectively, shall be that specified for each subdivision's financing of minimum health services at basic matching rates. The planning for water and sewerage facilities to be financed in this manner may be financed jointly by, or under the joint authority of, the Department and any county or Baltimore City or the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission. The funds to be so used shall appear in the local health department's budget for the fiscal year in which their use is anticipated. The percentage contribution may not be affected by any other State or federal funds received by the subdivision for the same planning unless the total grants exceed the actual cost of the plan, in which case the contribution shall be reduced accordingly.