National Legislative Update

Legislative update for NLProvided by Ted Stiger, Director of Policy, Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP)

Congress needs to pass a stopgap spending before this current fiscal year ends on September 30. Congress continues to debate a measure that would fund government programs at current levels (fiscal year 2016) until December 9. Senate leaders hope to pass their version of the bill this week to avoid a government shutdown and keep federal agencies funded into FY 2017, which starts on October 1. The House is likely to follow the Senate and adopt the same measure.

 Congressional leaders have not reached a deal yet on emergency Zika virus funding and language restricting funds for Planned Parenthood from the Zika package, which has caused delays in getting the funding measure passed.

Congress will still have to return in a lame-duck session after the elections to complete the full FY 2017 appropriations process.

On September 15, the Senate passed the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (WRDA)-S. 2848. The legislation identifies $4.5 billion of water-related infrastructure projects and authorizes $4.9 billion for drinking and clean water infrastructure over five years.

The measure also provides $220 million in direct emergency assistance to address drinking water issues in communities such as Flint, MI.

Of interest to RCAP, the bill authorizes a grant program to assist small and disadvantaged communities in complying with the requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act. A priority is given to underserved communities without basic drinking water or wastewater services. This section authorizes $230 million for FY 2017, and $300 million for each of fiscal years 2018 through 2021.

Additionally, the bill establishes a technical assistance program for small treatment works, to be carried out by qualified nonprofit technical service providers. Authorizes $15 million a year for five years. A full section by section summary of the bill is attached in the appendices of this report.

Over in the House, legislative efforts are underway to move their WRDA package (H.R. 5303) for floor consideration this week. Should the House pass its WRDA package, a conference committee could work to reconcile the respective Senate and House packages in time for enactment of the final bill during a December Lame Duck session.

Ted Stiger joined RCAP in 2016 as Policy Director and is responsible for the organization’s national policy and legislative efforts as well as RCAP’s USDA grant portfolio.  

RCAP Solutions is the Northeast affiliate of the Rural Community Assistance Partnership. The Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP) is a national network of nonprofit organizations working to ensure that rural and small communities throughout the United States have access to safe drinking water and sanitary wastewater disposal. The six regional RCAPs  its partners or affiliates provide a variety of programs in their section of the United States to accomplish this goal, such as direct training and technical assistance; leveraging millions of dollars to assist communities develop and improve their water and wastewater systems.

A Note of Thanks from a Client

We are always pleased to receive feedback from the clients and communities we serve.

We were especially grateful for this recent note from the South Ashmere Water Association, located in Hinsdale, MA, in Berkshire County, which included a donation of $100. This contribution will help our organization to continue the important work we do to help individuals and communities to build pathways to self-sufficiency and expanded economic opportunity.

The note reads:

Dear Jim, Thank you note Ashmere

On behalf of the South Ashmere Water Association, I want to thank you for your help in shaping our asset management plan.  We could not have complied with the D.E.P. (Department of Environmental Protection) requirement or found a practical way of using the information without your help! 

Please accept the donation enclosed in appreciation for your service. 

Sincerely, 

Clay Knapp, President

RCAP/AWWA Workshop

RCAP AWWA Header

Small System Operator Training: Achieve and Maintain Compliance with the SDWA (Systems <10,000)

June 2 – Jeff’s Catering, 15 Littlefield Road, Brewer, ME – 8:00a.m. – 3:30p.m.

Workshop Description:
Your utility faces daily-to-day challenges providing reliable, safe drinking water for your customers while avoiding costly violations. The American Water Works Association (AWWA), in conjunction with the Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP), and the New England Water Works Association (NEWWA) is offering a FREE 1-day workshop to help your utility learn about compliance with drinking water regulations and steps to avoid costly violations. This workshop is made possible by funding through the U.S. EPA and AWWA’s partner, RCAP.

Continuing Education Credits – AWWA will offer TCHs for workshop attendance (pending state approval at time of mailing).

Individual registration is required through NEWWA. Click here to download registration form

Course Presenters:

Arthur Astarita is a water resource specialist and the Maine State Lead for RCAP Solutions. He is a professional geologist and joined RCAP in March 1998 after 22 years as an international petroleum explorationist. He has helped complete numerous water and wastewater infrastructure improvement projects throughout New England.

Mark Johnson is a technical assistance provider and state lead in Vermont with RCAP Solutions. He has more than 15 years’ experience in water treatment and distribution. He has a bachelor’s in civil and environmental engineering from Northeastern University in Boston, and has worked in the municipal and private sector as a certified water treatment and distribution operator. He has been certified in water treatment, distribution, backflow testing, and cross connection control program administration in several states.

Rebecca Reynolds is a community development specialist with RCAP Solutions. She has more than 20 years’ experience in the water and wastewater field, including water and wastewater operations, laboratory processes, operator training, and asset management. She is a certified Class IV Water Treatment Operator, Class III Distribution System Operator, and Wastewater Treatment Operator V in Maine; a Certified Environmental Specialist, and a Certified Check Up for Small Systems (CUPSS) trainer.

Audience: Operators, managers, or governing body of a small system.

Click here to register or for more information

(Please note, to register, you must download, print and complete the form in the above link, then fax/email/mail to NEWWA)

 

Maine Field Office Grand Opening

 

Ribbon1

 

We’re Celebrating the Grand Opening of Our New Maine Field Office!

Thursday, May 12, 2016 ~ 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Ribbon Cutting & Presentations at 2:00 p.m.

RCAP Solutions, Inc.

477 Congress Street, 5th Floor, Portland, Maine 04101

Refreshments will be served

Please R.S.V.P. to
Maegen McCaffrey, Chief Communications Officer
978.630.6714, mmccaffrey@rcapsolutions.org

Click here for directions.

 

About RCAP Solutions:Maine Logo

Our Mission: To foster personal and public self-reliance and improve the quality of life for individuals, families and the communities in which they live.

Established in 1969, RCAP Solutions is a comprehensive 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, helping individuals, families and communities with a wide range of beneficial services providing our most basic needs including safe, affordable housing and clean drinking water. 

Our Community Resources Division promotes public, environmental and economic health by providing consulting, planning, financing, regulatory and compliance oversight, management and operational support for a wide range of community development and infrastructure projects.

RCAP Solutions is the Northeast affiliate of the Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP), a national network of regional nonprofit organizations that provide comprehensive, on-site technical assistance and training to help small, rural communities address their drinking water, wastewater, and other community development needs.  We provide services in all six New England states, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

This is Our Home: Tackling Rural Solid Waste Issues in Puerto Rico

IMG_0493As the snow storm winds down here in Central MA, we thought it appropriate to share a video made recently about the clean-up efforts RCAP is spearheading in Puerto Rico. This video shows the tremendous support shown by the community, resulting in over 400 volunteers coming together in the poor, rural barrio of Manzanillo, to clean a beach destroyed by illegal dumping. Our second annual clean-up will take place in just a few weeks in Guayabal, a similar area just a few miles away.

https://vimeo.com/143277565

Click here for more detailed information about the cleanup including before and after photos:  http://www.rcapsolutions.org/rcap-solutions-changes-lives-and-perceptions-in-a-rural-puerto-rican-community/

Testimonial from a Partner in Maine

I want to thank you for all the assistance RCAP Solutions has provided to drinking water and wastewater operators in the Train-the-trainer-training-to-achievestate of Maine.  Each year our future industry leaders benefit from the wonderful “Asset Management” and “Emergency Preparedness” presentations given by Art Astarita during our Management Candidate School.  His practical approach resonates well with this audience.  Art and Rebecca Reynolds have also been great in their willingness to travel to less populated areas like Calais, Rockland and Presque Isle, Maine.

In early 2015, drinking water and waste water operators in Calais and Fairfield also benefited from the “Math Basics” workshops provided by Mia McDonald.  It is tough to positively engage operators in a math training program. However, the students in Mia’s two classes had many favorable comments such as: “Instructor was great! She explained herself well… Will help obtain my Grade III License… Will use this math to help with future problem solving… Dosing pumps and chlorine demand and the formulas will be helpful”.

It is so important that RCAP Solutions takes such high caliber training to the less populated communities in the far reaches of Maine.  Such training saves the operators in both the cost of travel and also in the cost of time away from their facilities.

As the Training Coordinator for JETCC, I also work closely with the certification officers for Maine’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). I am always confident that the RCAP training we offer will be welcome by those agencies and recommended for the operators.

Thank you for sharing your resources with Maine’s Water Pollution Control Personnel!

Sincerely,

Leeann Hanson, Training Coordinator
Joint Environmental Training Coordinating Committee
Scarborough, Maine

RCAP Solutions Staff Receive National Awards

Awards

Award recipients Sukhwindar Singh, Josefa Torres-Olivo, and Art Astarita.

Sukh

Robert Stewart with Sukhwindar Singh.

Robert Stewart, Executive Director for the Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP) presented three RCAP Solutions Employees with prestigious national awards during the RCAP annual conference last year in Madison, Wisconsin.

 

Sukhwindar Singh, Director of Education and Training was inducted into the RCAP National Hall of Fame. Inductees into the Hall of Fame are recognized for having made significant positive contributions to RCAP in the course of their work over the years as a long-term Technical Assistance Provider or Regional coordinator who works directly with communities. Sukh has been with RCAP Solutions for 21 years and brings unique expertise, training and skills useful in a variety of leadership, training and community settings.  She has primary oversight ensuring that all training deliverables/funder requirements are met.

Josefa

Josefa Torres-Olivo with Robert Stewart.

Josefa Torres-Olivo, District Director for Puerto Rico was the recipient of The Bill French Bridge-builder Award, given to an RCAP staff member who has been successful in building their state RCAP program, whether in reputation and credibility or in funding. She has advanced her state program to a higher level of operations through new and enhanced relationships with funding and primacy agencies or other partners, new services offered to communities, and new grants or contracts obtained. This award is named for Bill French, one of RCAP’s founding members who leveraged the RCAP program to build a strong and well-respected agency, and is given to a recipient who has successfully advanced their state program to a higher level of operations. Josefa was recognized for enabling her program to cross over barriers, leading the program along a road to realize its vision, and bringing the plan to fruition. Josefa has been with RCAP Solutions for 20 years, providing technical assistance on water and wastewater issues; assisting in the planning, developing, and organization of rural communities; providing expertise for the implementation of community source water protection and ground water improvement for rural low-income water systems; and has worked cooperatively with local, state, and federal government agencies to enhance community systems compliance.

Art

Art Astarita with Robert Stewart.

Art Astarita, State Lead for Maine, received The Outstanding Service Award, given to an RCAP staff member who repeatedly goes above and beyond the call of duty in serving his communities, building their capacity and helping them achieve the outcomes that are critical to their future health and development. Art was recognized as a staff member who gives more than 100 percent in the service of his communities and whose commitment and dedication to RCAP’s mission is obvious to all. Art is a geologist and joined RCAP Solutions 17 years ago. He provides technical assistance to small water and wastewater systems throughout Maine and New England.  This includes environmental assessment reports, GPS and GIS mapping, aquifer contaminate analysis, writing funding applications, grant administration, conducting system financial analysis and asset management training.  He has helped to secure funding on numerous water and wastewater infrastructure improvement projects.

Regional Ideas for CUPSS’ Repair & Replacement Cost Schedule

Arthur Astarita, Maine State Lead, RCAP Solutions, Inc

RCAP Solutions’ experience has shown that small-sized systems (<3300 connections), have a wide-range of ways to document the need for capital improvements.  Typically, the superintendent has a list showing improvements including costs that is used to plan proposed upgrades.  This “mental list” is generated and updated when events arise but does not contain a comprehensive look at the entire system and its’ financial health.  It is not holistic view which is required to assure the system is operated in a long term and responsible manner.  Conducting a collaborative infrastructure assessment through an asset management planning process produces a thorough document that can be utilized by the utility* and shared with the town or even regional economic development groups.

RCAP Solutions has been conducting asset management processes with five water utilities in Oxford County Maine (Figure 1).  These water utilities are relatively close geographically; the largest towns of Mexico and Rumford are separated by a bridge over the Androscoggin River.  The five towns are part of the nine-town River Valley Region of the Western Maine Economic Development Council (WMEDC-RVR).  The River Valley Region has a population of about 13,250.  “Public” water is delivered to about 12,000 people or 90% of the WMEDC-RVR population.  The drinking water for the residents of the four remaining towns is sourced by private wells.

The hub of this region is Rumford, the largest community and home to the largest employer, Canadian based Catalyst Corporation’s Wood Mill.  At the end of 2014, the mill employed 800 workers; within 5 months they laid off 50 people.  The mill is the critical economic lifeblood of the area.  The Rumford Water District* realizes about 30% of their revenue from the mill whereas the surrounding water utilities have many indirect benefits. A study by the Maine State Office of Policy and Management (OPM) of population trends between 2010 and 2030 predict a population decline of 33% WMEDC-RVR (http://maine.gov/economist/projections/index.shtml). Such estimates should weigh heavily on the regions’ towns and possible coping mechanisms should be activity discussed.

Figure 1:  Oxford County Water Infrastructure Asset Management Project showing the five core towns and the four other towns comprising the River Valley Region of the Western Maine Economic Development Council.

Figure 1: Oxford County Water Infrastructure Asset Management Project showing the five core towns and the four other towns comprising the River Valley Region of the Western Maine Economic Development Council.

RCAP Solutions’ project work for Andover and Canton Water Districts included creating a digital map of each system; the other three systems (Dixfield, Mexico, Rumford) already had digital maps.  The tables from digital map layers provided a raw inventory for critical water equipment such as hydrants, valves, distribution pipe, source, treatment and storage. Individually, each system carried that inventory into a spreadsheet containing questions including name, location, condition, installation date, life expectancy, criticality of failure and replacement cost.  Each utility completed an asset management plan (AMP) using EPA’s CUPSS software.  A quick view of each utility is shown in Table 1.

 

Table 1: Quick View of Utilities in this study (More details can be seen in the respective utility’s asset management plans-not included.  State of Maine MHI is $48,453

Table 1: Quick View of Utilities in this study (More details can be seen in the respective utility’s asset management plans-not included. State of Maine MHI is $48,453

Historically, most of the water utilities’ asset replacements, specifically valves and pipes, are driven by the State Department of Transportation and/or towns’ public works schedules.  If roads, culverts, sidewalks or bridges are on State or Town schedules for repaving, the water utilities are then consulted.  This silo scheduling creates interruptions with the water sectors’ normal replacement plans; it can also lead to replacing assets that have not reached their full useful life expectancy; payment for such pre-spending is the responsibility utility customers or town residents*.

Using the asset management process, the utilities can generate a repair/replacement (R&R) cost schedule.  Here, items can be grouped by decade or by logical project task(s).  This information is perhaps the most important and critical step in reaching effective utility management.  This report initializes priority and emphasis on improvement types along with the cost of those upgrades or maintenance activities.  The R&R cost schedule is critical, concise and organized. The information can be shared with decision makers overseeing the system, town, region and state. This sharing leads to enhancements to planning infrastructure improvements.  Such cooperation will improve cooperation between utilities, towns and state along with sharpening the budget process for everyone.

As Table 1 shows, the median household income (MHI) of the project towns are below the state MHI, thus they qualify for grant assistance from increasingly competitive (and dwindling) federal and state programs.  Historically, each water utility hires an engineering firm to scope the necessary capital improvements.  Individually, they submit funding applications and separately bid-out construction.  Consequently, they compete and are “ranked” against each other at two very important projects stages: funding and construction.  In this project example, the collective utilities total distribution pipe is 76 miles.  The amount of pipe, which generally relates to the amount of total assets, pales when compared to large and very large water systems.  Accordingly, if these small, geographically close utilities are treated as “one system”, economies of scale are visible.  Hiring one engineering firm for design and one construction company enhanced by bulk purchases of similar pipe, hydrants, valves, etc. could create cost savings on total collaboration-wide project.

To demonstrate an example process of collaboration between these five water systems, RCAP Solutions pooled each system’s asset management information into one CUPSS project.  The combined analysis shows 2200 assets worth $76.8M; 727 assets are at high risk. The CUPSS software produces a capital improvement schedule which can be exported for spreadsheet analysis.  A twenty-year improvement plan in five year increments can be presented.  Figure 2 shows the collective twenty-year CIP for the five utilities. These twenty-year expenses represent only 18% of the total collective replacement value.  The first ten years of capital costs by utility are shown in Figures, 3 and 4.

Figure 2: Oxford County Collaborative CIP Study – 20 Year CIP 2014-2034- 18% of the Total Collaborative Value

Figure 2: Oxford County Collaborative CIP Study – 20 Year CIP 2014-2034- 18% of the Total Collaborative Value

 

Granted each system has different scales of improvement costs. Some utilities need to review asset attributes in order to “smooth out” the overly large cost requirements in certain 5-year periods. However, costs to the collaborative are transparency and can be preserved by prorating costs along with factoring the capital expense with each utility’s revenue contribution to the collective.

Figure 3: Oxford County Collaborative CIP Study – 1st Five Years 2014-2019- 8% of the Total Collaborative Value

Figure 3: Oxford County Collaborative CIP Study – 1st Five Years 2014-2019- 8% of the Total Collaborative Value

Figure 4: Oxford County Collaborative CIP Study – 2nd Five Years 2020-2024- <1% of Total Collaborative Value

Figure 4: Oxford County Collaborative CIP Study – 2nd Five Years 2020-2024- <1% of Total Collaborative Value

A financial analysis of all five water utilities shows that perhaps jointly, they could accomplish the needed capital improvements.  The revenue expenses are shown in the following graphics and tables indicates that for the two year period of 2012 and 2013 there was a collective $1.7M surplus.

graphs

After individually funding the necessary utility reserves: emergency (~25% of operation expenses), debt service along with replacement of short-term assets (asset with <15 year life expectancy), a portion of a utility’s surplus could be collective pooled for capital improvements to create an economy of scale.  Of course, what certain projects are good of collaboration versus unique upgrades specific to an particular utility must be crafted.

This collaboration aids the water utilities’ sustainability and helps the economic development of the River Valley Region.  Improved infrastructure attracts businesses.  Using the existing framework of the WMEDC-RVR can help streamline planning amongst utilities, towns and regional groups. Given the OPM’s declining population projections and one pivotal declining employer in the RVR, it is RCAP’s opinion that the utilities and towns needs to 1) prepare for a lower revenue stream, 2) prudently accomplish as much infrastructure repair/replacement as possible, 3) collaborate in purchases and conducting infrastructure projects and 4) consider consolidating administrative operations.

As governmental subsidies decline, it is increasingly becoming apparent that small rural utilities must develop a holistic business plan which focusses on asset management in order to operate the system in a sustainable manner.  It is the long-term asset reserve that is financially critical and challenging.  However, it seems that individually, no one system can save reserves to significantly “buy down debt” of these expensive capital improvements while keeping customer rates reasonable.  If major employers decline, a ripple effect occurs to the revenue available; expenses increase for the ever declining population base.  Collectively working together could be a solution.

Fly-In Review and Legislative Update

RCAP Solutions staff members were in Washington DC for our annual conference, promoting the work we do in rural communities across the northeast. RCAP Solutions is part of the Rural Community Assistance Partnership, a network of six regional organizations that provide technical assistance and training for water and wastewater systems in small rural communities throughout the U.S. Pictured below is Mia McDonald, Drinking Water Specialist and Brian Scales, Chief Development & Govt. Affairs Officer with Senator Elizabeth Warren.

RCAP Solutions staff members were in Washington DC for our annual conference, promoting the work we do in rural communities across the northeast. RCAP Solutions is part of the Rural Community Assistance Partnership, a network of six regional organizations that provide technical assistance and training for water and wastewater systems in small rural communities throughout the U.S. Pictured below is Mia McDonald, Drinking Water Specialist and Brian Scales, Chief Development & Govt. Affairs Officer with Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Ari Newmann, Director of Policy Development and Applied Research, RCAP

Each year, a contingent of RCAP staff and rural community leaders come to Washington, DC for the RCAP network’s annual Legislative Fly-In. The purpose of the fly-in is to educate members of Congress and the administration about the services that RCAP performs for their rural constituents and remind them of the importance of federal rural development programs. Despite a late-season snowfall that forced the closure of most of the federal government, this March we were able to meet with the offices of more than 100 legislators as well as Congressional committees and federal agencies.

The event helped build support on the Hill for rural development programs and for technical assistance for those programs. In the weeks following the fly-in, RCAP circulated a letter in the Senate supporting funding for technical assistance for rural water and wastewater systems that was signed by a bipartisan group of 12 Senators. A similar letter in the House of Representatives garnered 42 signatures from across the political spectrum. As Congress contemplates funding bills later this year, this strong show of support across party lines will help to ensure that funding for these programs continues.

Throughout the week members of Congress and their staff expressed the desire to hear more about how RCAP and federal community development programs are helping their constituents. In order to maintain support for these programs, it is imperative legislators continue to hear how they benefit the people they represent, and Congressional recesses provide a great opportunity to do so. Every few weeks, Congress is out of session so they can return to their home states and spend time visiting and meeting with constituents. These breaks are a great time to reach out to your Senators and Representative to try to schedule them for a visit to your community. Groundbreakings and ribbon-cutting ceremonies provide great opportunities for photo-ops which members of Congress love, and which give them an opportunity to learn about the great work that is being done throughout rural America as a result of the federal programs that they oversee. Even if you’re not planning a big event, your legislators may be interested to see the improvements your community has made as a result of the availability of water or wastewater service. Showing them the value of these programs to rural America will help keep our communities front of mind when they return to Washington and will generate support for our projects and programs.

Water Operator Training Update

Students working to read samples with colorimeters while Kathleen McDermott, Technical Sales Consultant with event sponsor, Hanna Instruments looks on, at NH Department of Environmental Services, Franklin Training Facility.

Students working to read samples with colorimeters while Kathleen McDermott, Technical Sales Consultant with event sponsor, Hanna Instruments looks on, at NH Department of Environmental Services, Franklin Training Facility.

RCAP Network Releases High Quality Drinking Water Operator Training Materials that are Well Received by Operators throughout Northeastern United States

Sukhwindar Singh, Director of Education and Training, RCAP Solutions

Just under seventeen months ago, the RCAP Network was fortunate to be funded through the US EPA to develop materials and train small systems on compliance related topics including content that supported Operator Continuing Education credits.

After a systematic review of the ABC (Association of Boards of Certification) Drinking Water Treatment Need-to-Know criteria, it became evident that RCAP curricula would focus on Distribution System Water Quality Management for small systems as well as basic math and chemistry for water operators.  This goal was set at the National RCAP level for all the regional RCAPs to follow.

We will highlight some of the goals and content of the curricula and explain how it is organized to engage operator attendees.  We will also discuss the extensive Training Contact Hours (TCH) application process and results we have achieved as well as highlighting some upcoming trainings.

The RCAP Distribution Water Quality Management Training Module is designed as a one-day, 8 hour class with small group activities and RCAP videos that emphasize chlorine residual management and distribution system best practices.  The modules that make up the 8 hour course highlight the following: distribution as a barrier to protect public health, regulations and factors  that impact water quality in the distribution system, distribution system components and monitoring practices, how to take a good bacteria sample, chlorine residual management, flushing and pressure management.   Expected learning outcomes for attendees are that they will be able to: 1) Describe the importance of maintaining the distribution system as a barrier to protect public health, 2) Monitor chlorine residual and recognize problems that may lead to low residuals, 3) Manage water age in the distribution system and 4) Recognize issues that may lead to water quality degradation in the distribution system.    The 8 hour course features pre-and post-assessment key concepts which are a hallmark of the RCAP Curriculum Design.  RCAP Solutions has applied for and received course approval for 8.0 TCH credits for water operators in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, and Rhode Island.  We are securing course approval with the other state primacies in our region as well.  We have successfully completed two trainings for over 25 operators in Massachusetts and New Hampshire with upcoming events scheduled in October in New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island.

Concepts covered in the Basics of Operator Math module include setting up word problems, working with fractions, conversion factors for common units in water treatment and distribution, percentages, area and volume, manipulat­ing an equation to solve for the desired parameter, chemical dosing problems, and using the ABC Formula/Conversion Table or state-specific formula sheet. While the module’s target audience is water operators, most concepts are also applicable to wastewater operations.   RCAP Solutions has applied for and received course approval for 4.0 TCH credits for The Basics of Operator Math in both water and wastewater in Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, New York, and again we are working with a number of other primacies in our network to secure this accreditation.  In the meantime, RCAP Solutions staff has successfully trained over 100 operators on this content in New York and Maine.  RCAP Solutions has upcoming trainings in this topic scheduled in New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and New Hampshire for October and November.

Chemistry is a very wide ranging subject that can take many years of study.  The Chemistry for Water Operators curriculum covers some very basic concepts in chemistry such as how to use the periodic table, the chemistry of water, and how to calculate dosage.  These are basic skills that can assist students in understanding more advanced classes on water treatment chemistry.   The target audience is small system water operators that have had some basic chemistry instruction in high school or college.

The training module is designed to fit in a half-day session and can be combined with other modules at the discretion of the trainer.   As a result of this training, participants will be able to: use the periodic table, understand the basic chemical properties of water, and be able to calculate concentrations in a solution.  The course will accomplish this through modules that cover basic chemistry principles from the importance of chemistry for operators to the chemistry of water as well as concentrations and various calculations.  RCAP Solutions has received course approval for 3.5 TCH credits in both water and

Wastewater in Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire.   RCAP Solutions has upcoming trainings on this topic scheduled in New Jersey in October and New Hampshire in November.  We are also submitting this material for course approval in many other states of our region.

A successful training event requires quality material, skilled and versatile trainers, engaged participants, sponsors, suitable training locations, and the cooperation of the dedicated Primacy personnel that we have worked with in many of our states to obtain course approval.

We acknowledge and thank the staff of the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health, Drinking Water Section, the New York State Department of Health, Drinking Water, the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, Drinking Water and Wastewater Sections, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, Water Resources Division, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, Water Division, the State of Rhode Island Department of Health, and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Bureau of Safe Drinking Water for all their assistance in this extraordinary year of  training program development and delivery at RCAP Solutions.  We are also most appreciative of Hanna Instruments for their participation and sponsorship of trainings in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

Upcoming Continuing Education Trainings for Operators

Please Contact Sukh Singh directly at (412) 554-2572 for registration, information and additional training opportunities.

  • October 7, 2015 – Distribution and Water Quality Management in Millbrook, New York. Registration is closed.
  • October 13, 2015 – Math and Chemistry for Water Operators in Egg Harbor New Jersey. Registration is open.
  • October 14, 2015 – Distribution and Water Quality Management in Egg Harbor New Jersey. Registration is open.
  • October 20, 2015 – Basic Math for Water Operators & Distribution System Water Quality Management in Providence Rhode Island. Registration is about to close.
  • November 9, 2015 – Math and Chemistry for Water Operators in Franklin, New Hampshire. Registration is open.
  • December 2, 2015 – Asset Management for Small Water Systems in Connecticut. Location in Connecticut is TBD.  Contact Sukh or Mia McDonald at mmcdonald@rcapsolutions.org for information.