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In late July, the Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE) announced for the 4th consecutive year the City of North Bend’s Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) was honored with the Wastewater Treatment Plant Outstanding Performance Award.
Mayor McFarland commented, “This award is recognition of the dedication of our staff and City to meeting the highest standards for our citizens and our environment.”
Of approximately 300 wastewater treatment plants statewide, North Bend’s plant was one of 125 that achieved full compliance with its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit in 2020.
DOE staff evaluated plants for compliance with effluent limits, monitoring and reporting requirements, spill prevention planning, pre-treatment and overall operational demands of the permit.
Washington State DOE Water Quality Program Manager Vincent McGowan said, “Your excellent record is a credit to the dedicated operators who are responsible for running this award-winning plant. It takes diligent operators and a strong management team, working effectively together, to achieve this high level of compliance.”
Unprecedented challenges faced last year due to Covid-19 - including managing wipes, gloves and masks clogging pipes - make this year’s award even more impressive and demonstrate the level of effort North Bend’s talented and proficient plant operators showed throughout 2020.
North Bend Public Works Director Mark Rigos commented, “This award reflects the outstanding effort, commitment and attention to detail of the City’s Public Works operations and maintenance technicians James Monroe, Greg Fierro, Craig Jess and Jerry Forza, along with WWTP Manager Jeff Leamon, Maintenance Supervisor Mark Pray and SCADA Supervisor Chris Cote. Their high level of performance shown during such a difficult year, with a large construction project also happening in their work zone, was exemplary.”
The City of North Bend just completed Phase 1 of the WWTP High Priorities Improvement Project that will help protect the environment, decrease energy usage and improve employee safety. Phase 2 of the project is expected to begin in September and be complete in 2023.
Photo: WWTP Staff Members (L to R): Craig Jess (w/Cody), James Monroe, Jeff Leamon, Greg Fierro