June Newsline: Orlando's 5-year wastewater plan; IA sewer grant; Texas invests in wind and more

June 2010 Vol. 65 No. 6

Martin Baggs, Thames Water's chief executive, said: "In our continued drive to be more efficient for our 13 million customers, we've completely changed the way we do our work. Instead of letting numerous small contracts to lots of providers, we're working with leading organizations to deliver the 'base load' of our investment program for the next five years.

"This new approach has changed the way our contractors have bid for the work: they've formed joint ventures, each containing the required specialists. The way we've structured these programs of work will also allow our contractors to plan further ahead and give them greater incentives to be efficient on cost and time.
"Our operational performance is better than ever right now - best-ever water quality, best-ever sewage works compliance and leakage down 24 per cent in the past four years. Our new approach will help us build on these standards of excellence over the next five years."

Contract work includes:
• continuing to replace London's worn-out Victorian water mains;
• upgrading sewers to protect customers' homes from sewer flooding;
• improving water and sewage treatment works; and
• extending water and sewerage networks to accommodate future population growth.

New Jersey American Water seeks new rates, conservation programs
New Jersey American Water announced that it has filed for new rates with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, which will increase the average customer's monthly water bill by $7.10 or 23 cents per day. As part of this rate filing, the company has proposed implementing innovative residential water conservation programs, expanding assistance to low income customers, and creating new rate structures that would encourage conservation and generate economic activity in New Jersey.

Since its last rate filing, New Jersey American Water has spent approximately $251million in capital improvements, replacing miles of aging water mains, and upgrading its water treatment facilities, storage tanks, wells and pumping stations to improve water quality, service reliability and fire protection. The cost of increased expenses such as labor, fuel, energy, taxes and property and liability insurance are part of the company's rate request.