HVWP is pleased to release this issue of the Village Wellspring, a periodic newsletter designed to keep you better informed about HVWP activities and events. We would like to take this opportunity to thank again all of our customers for their patience and courteousness as we continue to improve our billing, payment and maintenance procedures. We also truly appreciate those customers that let us know about unusual water usage, leaks, water quality changes and hydrant damage – this makes it easier for us to monitor water system health and safeguards our shared water resources. Please call or stop by anytime to talk about water – it’s our favorite topic.
STAFF & BOARD CHANGES
Full-time staffing remained constant throughout this past year. During the summer, the Precinct benefited from the part-time assistance of Jeff Bell. You may have noticed that many of the hydrants were cleaned and painted; this was in large part thanks to Jeff’s energy and enthusiasm. We wish the best to Jeff as he continues to prepare for a career in the fire and EMT professions.
Professional licensing efforts were successfully advanced through state testing programs in 2018. Operators Gary Hebert and Dennis Bell were awarded their NH Water Distribution Grade 2 and Grade 1 certifications, respectively. Gary and Dennis also received their NH Water Treatment Grade 1 certifications. Dennis became a Certified Backflow Prevention Device Tester, and Superintendent Mike Heidorn added a Cross Connection Control Surveyor certification to his list of
qualifications. Collectively, these certifications and their continuing education requirements act to ensure that the services provided by HVWP are as professional, efficient and safe as possible.
Our elected board remained consistent throughout the past year, with the exception of the stepping-down of Vinny Lembo. Vinny’s sense of humor and acute eye for details are sorely missed. His time on the board occurred during a period of great change and challenge here at the Precinct, and we thank him for volunteering his time and expertise.
CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM (CIP)
It’s no secret that many old water systems in towns throughout the U.S. are in need of significant investments to stabilize and upgrade their infrastructure. While it is currently a source of local pride See if you can find the hydrant in this picture! We truly thank all who clear snow from hydrants near their homes and businesses. This greatly improves fire protection and reduces costs and independence, the system here in the Village was founded in 1941 and is vulnerable to issues associated with aging assets. Last year, HVWP identified those vulnerabilities in its first-ever comprehensive 10-year CIP. The CIP focuses on the most pressing and important infrastructure needs identified over the last decade by the State as requiring immediate attention. Those needs include tank replacement, new source development, emergency connection(s), meter upgrades, and water main and pump house improvements.
The first steps in addressing those needs were completed in 2017. Finishing the job, however, will require a
significant long-term financial commitment. HVWP has always prided itself on providing affordable service, and is committed to continuing to do so while also properly planning for a strong future relative to funding. The Board believes we can effectively complete the CIP tasks in the coming years through a creative combination of trust funds, land leasing and rate/fee restructuring. This plan was discussed at three public informational sessions held in April, July and Oct. 2017. An updated rate/fee structure was adopted in Jan. 2018.
OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST
Upcoming Field Season: Upcoming 2018 projects include water main relocation at the new Hackett Hill Road roundabout and completion of the new river crossing at Lilac Bridge. The $200K crossing will provide a vital backup in the event of another water main problem on the Main Street Bridge. We are also constructing a $1.8M 1MG replacement storage tank near I93, with related water main work in mthe Pinnacle Street – Vista Drive area. We will also be out flushing hydrants, repairing leaks, etc. We appreciate your patience and caution as we temporarily disrupt water and traffic.
Backflow Prevention: Preventing the backwards flow of potentially contaminated water into the water system is a vital component of our mission. A backflow prevention device is a mechanical valve assembly that senses a flow reversal and stops possibly harmful water from mixing with the drinking water. All properties with irrigation or fire sprinkler systems and most commercial and industrial buildings require such devices. The type of device used depends on the degree of health hazard. Over 230 backflow prevention devices were permitted by the Precinct in 2017. Device permits are renewed annually, and regular testing of the devices by the Precinct is required in order to remain connected to the public water system. Homeowners should also be aware of possible backflow situations related to common household plumbing items such as boilers, water heaters or treatment units, outdoor spigots, etc. For example, dangerous situations can occur when someone uses a garden hose sprayer to apply insecticides or herbicides to their lawn, or when a garden hose is left in a soapy bucket or used to clear a stoppage in their sewer line. Without a backflow prevention
device at the outdoor spigot, the contents of the hose and anything it is connected to can flow back into the plumbing and contaminate drinking water throughout the town. Hose-bibb vacuum breakers (photo above) are simple, inexpensive and easy to find, and should be installed on every home spigot. For more information, contact us anytime.