Public Services & Infrastructure Goal 3
Water and sewer infrastructure will be maintained to the highest standards, and operated in a manner that provides the highest quality service to utility customers and the lowest impact on the environment.
3.1 Utility Capital Improvement Planning
STRATEGY: Develop and implement a long range capital improvement plan to guide strategic investments in the maintenance and growth of the public water supply and wastewater collection systems.
JUSTIFICATION: The development of a long term capital improvement plan for the town’s public water and wastewater systems will help to ensure that the system has its revenues aligned with its long term maintenance and expansion needs. A capital improvement plan that establishes target dates for system expansions and capacity upgrades will also help the town, property owners and developer adequately prepare for the growth that will follow such improvements. A utility capital improvement plan will also help to inform the community’s land use and growth policies by giving policymakers better indicators of the types of land uses, including the potential density or intensity of development, that can be supported by the utility system.
3.2 Utility System Public Outreach
STRATEGY: Provide utility customers with regular updates on the status of improvements to the utility system, including promoting the environmental benefits of the town’s new wastewater treatment plant and the quality of the town’s municipal water system.
JUSTIFICATION: As investments are made in the utility system, keeping its customers and the community at-large informed of the progress being made in developing the system. The recently completed upgrade to the town’s wastewater treatment plant is one example of a major investment in the quality of the system that has both a significant environmental benefit, but also comes with a cost to the customers who are served by it. Promoting the benefits of this, and similar improvements in the system, will help customers understand how their funds are being used to guarantee the quality of their utility system. This in turn can help to build support for continued upgrades to the system.
3.3 Implement “Smart” Metering Technology
STRATEGY: Develop and implement a “smart meter” program, utilizing wireless technology, to provide utility customers with real time access to water consumption information.
JUSTIFICATION: The deployment of water meters that can provide real time usage data can provide a wide range of benefits to individual customers as well as the community as a whole. A major benefit of this type of technology is the ability of customers to monitor their water usage in real time, giving them a better understanding of how various activities and appliances affect their water consumption. This, in turn, allows residents to identify those activities and appliances that consume excessive quantities of water so that they can modify their behavior, upgrade fixtures or acquire water saving appliances to decrease their consumption. Real time monitoring also allows customers to detect leaks or other issues with their water systems, enabling more timely repairs and potentially preventing damage from occurring to structures. Overall, such technology would help the community conserve water as customers gain more awareness of their consumption.
3.4 Wastewater System Inflow and Infiltration Improvements
STRATEGY: Develop and implement a program to monitor and repair stormwater inflow and infiltration issues in the town’s sanitary sewer collection network.
JUSTIFICATION: Proper monitoring of the inflow and infiltration of stormwater into the wastewater collection system will aid in the early identification of problems with the sewer network. By correcting issues with the system as they are identified (with monitoring) the capacity impacts and financial costs associated with treating stormwater in addition to sanitary sewer flows can be minimized.
3.5 Utility Service Area Planning
STRATEGY: Develop and regularly update a utility system service area plan that defines existing service areas and establishes future service areas that are consistent with the extent of the town’s Municipal Growth Area.
JUSTIFICATION: Establishing the planned geographic scope of the future extent of the utility system, and aligning that closely to the town’s established municipal growth area , will help to better coordinate future development with planned expansions of the utility system and direct growth in a manner that more closely tracks the town’s preferred growth strategy.