Tag Archives: Vermont Rural Water Association

GMWEA Tradeshow, November 8!

It’s almost here!

GMWEA will present its 35th annual Tradeshow and Conference — our largest and most  anticipated annual event — on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, at the Doubletree Hotel & Conference Center, Burlington, Vt.

Don’t miss this event — it’s Vermont’s most important water quality professional development opportunity!

It brings together over 400 water, wastewater, and stormwater professionals, water quality technology and service providers, DPW administrators, staff from water-related nonprofit organizations, State agency administrators, educators, and students.

2018’s keynote speaker, Vt. ANR Secretary Julie Moore, will speak about the challenges facing Vermont’s natural waters and our water quality infrastructure. The tradeshow will feature over 100 exhibitors as well as six technical trainings — see below– presented by renowned experts, a delicious lunch, guest speakers, vendor raffles, and lots of networking opportunities.

The sessions (for full descriptions and registration information, visit https://www.gmwea.org/fall-trade-show.html):

Online Resources at OPR (Office of Professional Regulation), presented by Tara Grenier, OPR’s licensing administration supervisor, and Kara Shangraw, OPR’s license administrator for water/wastewater system designers and operators

Safe Handling, Storage, and Pumping of Water and Wastewater Chemicals, presented by Loren A. Swears, Slack Chemical Technical Applications

Polymer: An Owner’s Manual, presented by Ryan Peebles, New England regional manager, Cleanwaters, Inc.

Basic Math for Water and Wastewater Operators, presented by Matt Guerino, training specialist, Vermont Rural Water Association

Updated Boil Water Notice Policy, presented by Ben Montross, compliance and support services section chief, Vt. DEC Drinking Water and Groundwater Protection Division, and Patrick Smart, DEC, DWGWP Division

Working in Confined Spaces, presented by Raymond Morang, safety, training, and service manager, E.J. Prescott Inc.

To return to GMWEA’s website, click here: https://www.gmwea.org.

Water’s Worth It!

Water awareness is growing, thanks to a number of increasingly coordinated celebrations, activities, and public outreach efforts by public agencies and nonprofit organizations.

Here in North America, most people have ready access to clean drinking water.  In fact, we’re so used to water being available, on demand, that we forget how important it is.  Much of the world’s population lives without the assurance of safe drinking water.

If we’re going to keep our water wealth, we need to recognize its real value, in the many ways we use and enjoy it.  We need to learn more about how our natural water ecosystems and human-made water infrastructure works.

To that end, May has been declared Water’s Worth It Month – a time to remember, learn about, and celebrate water.  Many communities, municipal water and wastewater utilities, schools, and environmental organizations are presenting entertaining and informative events in May. For an overview of the month, useful facts, ideas for ways your community or company can participate, along with schedules of local activities, visit  http://www.waters-worth-it.org/

Appropriately, May 6 through 12 is National Drinking Water Week.  First established over 40 years ago by the American Water Works Association, this week-long observance  was declared in a joint congressional resolution and signed by President Ronald Reagan.

We’re often most aware of water when we’re having fun with it, so Vermont Rural Water Association has been hosting an annual Drinking Water Tasting Contest, a contest between competing municipal water systems’ for product flavor, to be held on May 10 at in Fairlee, Vermont.

To get a more comprehensive overview of the week, you can view a recent post by the national Centers for Disease Control : https://www.cdc.gov/features/drinkingwater/index.html

Check out the Water’s Worth It link above for more water-related activities.  If you can’t catch one this month, though, remember that water awareness through fun and informative events won’t end in May.

Every year since 2014,  GMWEA has presented Water Quality Day, featuring open houses and tours of water and wastewater facilities throughout the state, in May.  This year, however, we’ve decided to hold the event in conjunction with Vermont Clean Water Week activities, July 30 through August 3.  The week, established by the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources and proclaimed by Governor Phil Scott, will also include a wide range of recreational activities, contests, and facility tours, presented by GMWEA and over 100 other organizations!

 

A Full House for Fall 2017 SAC Course

By Wayne Graham, Wastewater Specialist, Vermont Rural Water Association

We had another full SAC class, Operation of Wastewater Treatment Facilities, this past fall, with 22 students attending over an eight-week period. Once again, I was pleased to join an incredible lineup of instructors — Paul Olander, Andy Fish, Eamon Twohig, Dave DiDomenico, Bruce Lawrence — who passed on years of experience and knowledge to the students.  Speaking of experience, Steve Cijka (Brandon WWTF) and Chuck (Ludlow WWTF) joined us as students, even though both could have taught the course. What a great opportunity for the entry level students to hang out with two great operators like Steve and Chuck!

Two of the students were an entry-level husband and wife team from the Lakehurst Campground Lagoon facility. They worked very hard during the course, and I just found out that both passed the Grade 1 exam on their first try. Congratulations Jodi and Josh, and welcome to the water sector industry!

We had the opportunity to take several tours of the Montpelier WWTF, and as usual observed a very busy but awesome facility, expertly staffed by Chris, Matt, Sam, and Jeremy. We also got to tour the Waterbury WWTF, where Chief Operator Pete Krolczyk took several hours out of his busy day to show us facility and explain to the students what it means to be operators and stewards of our environment. It is very interesting to see class attendees questioning, and developing relationships with, the operators giving the tours. I encourage attendees throughout the course to become active in the field and to get to know their fellow operators.

As always, it is very encouraging to see such a talented group entering our industry, which continues to provide lots of opportunities. Green Mountain Water Environment Association will be offering the next Sac Class (Operation of Wastewater Treatment Facilities) in the spring of 2018 — maybe I’ll see you there!

For information about the spring Sac course, contact Lisa Goodell at GMWEA – lisa.goodell@gmwea.org

To return to GMWEA’s website, click here: www.gmwea.org