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June 1, 2010 > Treatment Plant and Collection System win statewide awards

Treatment Plant and Collection System win statewide awards

Submitted By Michelle Powell

Union Sanitary District (USD) recently received two statewide awards from the California Water Environment Association (CWEA) for outstanding performance in 2009. The District, which serves Fremont, Newark, and Union City, won awards for "Plant of the Year" and "Collection System of the Year." USD owns and maintains 778 miles of sewer lines in the Tri-City area, and its 30-million gallon per day Alvarado Wastewater Treatment facility is located in Union City.

"The awards recognize accomplishments in regulatory compliance, innovative practices, cost effectiveness and other evidence of superior operations," says David Livingston, Plant Manager. "The Plant has received many local awards over the years for treatment plants which process 20 million gallons or more daily, but this is the first time we've won the statewide honor and it's a tremendous achievement." CWEA is the state industry association for wastewater professionals, with 9,000 members.

The Collection System of the Year award is the District's fifth statewide win for large collection systems (over 500 miles) since 1987. "We're the only agency to have won five times, and we're proud to receive this recognition from our industry colleagues," says Andy Morrison, Collection Services Manager. "Our employees make this possible - they all care about providing great service to our customers while protecting public health and the environment."

Earlier this year, USD received both of these awards at the local level from CWEA's San Francisco Bay Section, which includes Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Francisco Counties, and part of San Mateo County. The Bay Section awards automatically enrolled the District in CWEA's statewide competition. For the statewide competition, the District was visited by Awards Committees which inspected Plant Operations and Collection Services.

The activities of the District's Fabrication, Maintenance and Construction (FMC) group were an important element of the Plant award inspection, as that group maintains and repairs the thousands of pieces of equipment necessary for wastewater treatment, such as pumps, compressors, valves, generators, mechanical drives and gear boxes. Morrison credits the FMC team's contributions as instrumental to the Collections Services' win as well. The Awards Committee was impressed with USD's innovative preventive maintenance program and the extensive documentation available to employees on the District's internal website. "All three groups work together - it's a coordinated effort," says Robert Simonich, FMC manager. "To win both Statewide Awards in the same year is a great tribute to the collaboration of our skilled, dedicated employees."

For more information about Union Sanitary District's Statewide Awards, contact Andy Morrison, Collections Manager, at (510) 477-7542, David Livingston, Plant Manager, at (510) 477-7560, and Robert Simonich, FMC Manager at (510) 477-7518.

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