Charles City Earns Honor for Public Water Projects

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 7 recently honored Charles City, Iowa, for its proactive, innovative efforts to improve its municipal Water Pollution Control Plant, according to a Feb. 26 press release.

The 2008 Clean Water State Revolving Fund Award was formally presented to members of the Charles City Council and other city officials during the March 2 council meeting.

Charles City's honor is also known as the PISCES Award, an acronym for Performance in Innovation in the State Revolving Fund Creating Environmental Success.

The award relates to a $3.2-million series of water pollution control plant improvements that are designed to address issues related to Charles City's continuing growth and development. The improvements include the construction of a new bio-tower to supplement an existing trickling-filter system, construction of a third final clarifying unit and a 700,000-gallon sludge storage tank, the conversion and expansion of an existing aerobic digester, new intermediate pumping, additional raw pumping, and associated improvements to controls and instrumentation.

One of the criteria for honoring a city with the PISCES Award is financial integrity, and Charles City's nomination notes that the projects were completed nearly $400,000 below the engineering estimate and ahead of the targeted finishing date. Through responsible management practices, Charles City also performs a minimum of $50,000 in work to replace old sanitary sewer lines each year.

"This is smart, thoughtful, responsible stewardship of a public water treatment system, and it deserves this recognition," said Region 7 Acting Regional Administrator William Rice. "The people of Charles City can be proud of these forward-looking investments in their water infrastructure."