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The original item was published from 9/29/2020 5:19:51 PM to 10/14/2020 12:00:04 AM.

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Posted on: September 29, 2020

[ARCHIVED] County's Largest Division Reorganized

New Division Directors Mark Schweitzer and Phil Harris

Schweitzer Confirmed as Director
of Division of Water & Sewer Utilities;
 Harris Confirmed as Director of Division of Solid Waste & Recycling

FREDERICK, Md. –Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner announces the reorganization of the County’s largest division, Utilities and Solid Waste Management, into two separate divisions. Executive Gardner has appointed Mark Schweitzer as Director of the Division of Water and Sewer Utilities and Phillip Harris as Director of the Division of Solid Waste and Recycling. The County Council confirmed both appointments this afternoon. The creation of the divisions is effective immediately. 

“Both of these divisions handle complex and highly regulated operations,” Executive Gardner said. “Mark and Phil bring decades of experience in their respective fields, and I am confident each will excel in their new roles.”

The Division of Water and Sewer Utilities operates 13 water treatment plants, the largest of which is the New Design Road plant that treats 25 million gallons per day (MGD). The division also operates 12 wastewater treatment plants, including the 15-MGD Ballenger-McKinney wastewater treatment plant. The $66 million annual operating budget is operated as an enterprise fund, separate from the County’s General Fund. The division oversees $759 million in assets.

Frederick County’s $33 million solid waste and recycling operations have grown significantly over the past 20 years. The Division of Solid Waste and Recycling maintains $83 million in assets. The division oversees active and legacy landfill operations; a waste transfer station that handles 260,000 tons annually; natural wood waste and composting operations; a 2MW solar array; and recycling operations. 

Mr. Schweitzer has been Acting Director of the Division of Utilities and Solid Waste Management since the March 2020 retirement of Director Kevin Demosky. Schweitzer began his career with Frederick County Government in 1991 as a senior laboratory technician. He advanced within the division, serving as laboratory supervisor and department head of Regulatory Compliance, before being named deputy director in 2016. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. 

Mr. Harris’s tenure at Frederick County Government began in 1998 as the recycling crew leader. He went on to become the recycling program specialist and then manager before being named department head of Solid Waste Management in 2003. Harris earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from Frostburg State University.

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Photo shows Mark Schweitzer (left) and Phillip Harris.

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