Proposition 3 - Water and Wastewater Improvements Program

Program Background
The City’s water and wastewater systems include approximately 70 miles of underground water lines, 65 miles of wastewater lines, 7,600 water meters, and a wastewater treatment plant. Within this infrastructure, 38% of the water lines are 50 to 70 years old, 3% of the wastewater lines are over 40 years old, 67% of the water meters are over 15 years old, and the wastewater treatment plant is over 40 years old.

Basis for Program

The April 20, 2015, Wastewater Collection System and Water Distribution System Report stated, “approximately 52,000 feet (9-10 miles) of the older water lines have been identified as needing replacement in the near future.” These water lines are critical due to the frequency of service interruptions and a disproportionate amount of maintenance required. In the same report, approximately 10,000 feet (1-2 miles) of wastewater lines for future improvements were identified.

Water meter age leads to a degradation of meter accuracy. Of the 7,600 meters, 67% are over 15 years old. The aging meter inventory has led to approximately 15% of current water usage not being billed.

The wastewater treatment plant was constructed over 40 years ago and various systems within the plant do not function as designed due to aging and non-functioning components. The proposed improvements will leverage new efficiencies and energy savings that will offset their cost.

Proposed Budget
The total budget for design and construction costs is $24.38 million. An allocation of $11.00 million is for water lines, and $580,000 for wastewater lines. The budget for water meter installation and improvements to the wastewater treatment plant is $12.8 million, which is a performance based project. A performance project is one in which the efficiencies and cost savings to be generated are guaranteed by a contract. Additionally, a reduction in operational and energy costs will create a return on investment over the life of the improvements. This project will be revenue neutral over time and the replacement of new water meters will create new revenues.

Proposed Schedule
Design will begin once funding is received and construction will follow thereafter. Approximately one project per year which will include multiple locations can be anticipated for water and wastewater lines over the next 3-4 years. Residents in affected areas will be notified prior to each project’s commencement. The design for the improvements to the wastewater treatment plant has been completed. The project, including the installation of new water meters, is anticipated to be completed within 15 months once funding is received.