WHAT IS OAWU?
Oregon Association of Water Utilities is a nonprofit, independent association of water and wastewater utilities. OAWU was formed in 1977 to represent water utilities’ interests in the state legislature and provide onsite technical assistance. OAWU is a state affiliate of the National Rural Water Association. NRWA is one of America’s largest and strongest voices for rural and small systems, representing over 27,000 water and wastewater members.
OAWU currently has 455 regular members, 97 associate members, and 153 individual members. The membership consists of public and private water and wastewater systems such as municipalities, associations, districts, mobile home parks, schools, industry, etc. OAWU is governed by a board of 13 directors elected from the membership serving three year terms.
OAWU offers on-site assistance in many areas, including Safe Drinking Water Act and Clean Water Act regulations, water treatment technology, distribution system operation and maintenance, and wastewater treatment and collection. The association also provides assistance with management issues, such as, rate structures and reviews, funding programs, budgeting and public relations. In addition, members receive the quarterly magazine H2Oregon, legislative updates, and discounts on training seminars and annual meeting registration.
Over the years, OAWU has become a force in the state providing direction and leadership in water, wastewater, groundwater/source water, legislative and regulatory issues. On-site technical assistance is provided on a one-to-one basis to help small and rural systems meet the complex regulations facing the industry today. OAWU is unique in its ability to address problems from the system level. By providing technical assistance, training, and industry information OAWU assists water and wastewater utilities to enhance the quality of life in the communities they serve.
The Oregon Association of Water Utilities’ mission is provide service, support and solutions for Oregon water and wastewater utilities to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow.
National Rural Water Association employees several full-time lobbyists in Washington, DC who continuously monitor legislation in order to represent the interests of rural water and wastewater utilities. NRWA keeps its state affiliates informed of developments in water law and industry regulations. In addition, OAWU has a lobbyist at the state level and a Legislative Committee to keep members abreast of local legislative issues.
- SOC Waivers
- Rate Study and Reporting
- Health & Safety Assessments & Written Plans
- Water System Operations, Management and Efficiency Reviews & Written Plans
- On-site Services including flushing, valve exercising and reservoir cleaning
- Operator of Record Services
- Lagoon Profiling
Contact OAWU for a bid, estimate, services or questions.
ON-SITE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
- Training Specialist provides training and technical assistance to water systems throughout the state. Areas of assistance include regulatory compliance, rates and rate structures, system policies and procedures.
- Circuit Riders provide technical assistance to water systems. Assistance is available in the areas of cross connection, distribution systems, disinfection, water treatment facilities, operator certification and much more.
- Wastewater Technician provides assistance to wastewater systems throughout the state on such issues as activated sludge treatment, confined space entry, inflow and filtration, pump maintenance and collection systems.
- Source Water Specialist deals specifically with drinking water protection. Works with water systems to develop drinking water protection plans to meet all state and federal requirements including management, contingency and new well elements.
- Energy Efficiency Circuit Rider assists water and wastewater systems evaluate their energy needs, consumption and costs; recommending measures to reduce energy consumption; and identifying potential funding sources for improvements.
OAWU offers specialized training in both water and wastewater. Training is held throughout the state on topics such as treatment, regulations, operations, maintenance, operator certification, and management skills. The training offered is free or at a low cost. This professional training allows operators to upgrade their skills and improve the quality of the services they provide. Certification review courses are offered prior to testing dates throughout the state. Continuing Education Units are available to maintain operator certification.
The Annual Technical and Management Conference is held each year during the first week of March. A full schedule of seminars covering water, wastewater and management topics are offered. It is an opportunity to view new technologies and equipment exhibited by vendors, interact with the Board of Directors and OAWU staff and share experiences with other professionals in the industry. In addition, several other annual conferences are offered, including the Summer Coast Conference and the Gorge End of Year Conference.
OAWU membership also provides access to the On-Site Training Program. This program is designed to meet the varied needs of systems that may have special training requirements or demands.
H2Oregon, published quarterly, includes legislative news, technical advice, supplier information, and an assortment of columns and features.