Planning for a water future in Williams Lake

    Water is a precious thing. Williams Lake is blessed with an abundant source of fresh, clean water that’s relatively easy to extract and distribute. Unfortunately, like any good thing, our water supply is not infinite. During the past two years, the City of Williams Lake has worked hard to determine just how much water there is, and how to best manage it to ensure adequate supplies for future generations.

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    How healthy are your utility’s financial fundamentals?

    There are three areas that utilities should address to improve their financial strength: financial planning and management, effective pricing, and affordability. This article discusses these areas, as well as their benefit and importance in encouraging effective planning and preparation for utilities to meet future challenges.

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    Asset management planning and reporting options for water utilities

    Industry studies in recent years have raised awareness of the magnitude of asset renewal and replacement needs in the water industry, but little comparative work has been done on asset management. To help fill this gap, the AWWA Research Foundation sponsored the study summarized in this article.

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    Prioritizing capital improvement projects to mitigate risk

    Faced by the need to repair and replace aging infrastructure and at the same time build new systems to meet population growth, water utilities must make increasingly complex decisions about where, when, and how to invest their capital improvement dollars. What's more, their decisions must involve a range of stakeholders and win their “buy-in” in order for projects to receive necessary financial and community support.

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    Technology trends and their implications for water utilities

    Technology will transform the water utility workplace—from how utilities manage and use information to how they treat and monitor water. Understanding the nature of these changes and the appropriate use of technology can reduce costs, allow for better and quicker decision-making, and enable better management of increasingly complex information databases.

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    Public affairs as a strategic management function

    Most water utility managers don’t classify public outreach as an integral part of utility management. But, that’s an “unfortunate attitude because experience clearly demonstrates the value of devoting public outreach resources on major issues and projects early on instead of after the fact.”

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