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Norwalk, Connecticut: A Public-Private Partnership Case Study Mayor Alex Knopp U.S. Conference of Mayors Urban Water Council October 2004.

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Presentation on theme: "Norwalk, Connecticut: A Public-Private Partnership Case Study Mayor Alex Knopp U.S. Conference of Mayors Urban Water Council October 2004."— Presentation transcript:

1 Norwalk, Connecticut: A Public-Private Partnership Case Study Mayor Alex Knopp U.S. Conference of Mayors Urban Water Council October 2004

2 D OMI City of Norwalk  Founded February 26, 1640 and incorporated September 11, 1651  Sixth-largest city in Connecticut  Population of approximately 83,000  Mayor and Common Council members elected by five council districts

3 D OMI Water Pollution Control Authority  Adopted by the Common Council of the City of Norwalk March 26, 2002  Created to construct, reconstruct, operate and maintain the City’s sewerage system  Sewer Use Fee replaces property tax

4 D OMI Public-Private Partnership Overview  20-year contract operations and maintenance agreement with OMI began June 1, 2000  System includes a 30-mgd wastewater treatment plant, 200-mile collection system, and 23 pumping stations  Scope of work includes lab analysis and solids handling/disposal

5 D OMI Partnership Rough Start  Discharge of treated solids into waterway  Disputes over performance standards  Threat of litigation over penalties  Lack of communication between the partners  Rainiest summer since 1863

6 D OMI Renewal of Partnership Relationship  Partnership goals to focus on service results  Clarification of ambiguous contract provisions  Staff realignment by City and OMI  Establish regular joint working group meetings  Full reporting to WPCA  Use of technology increase efficiency  Management restructuring at DPW for contract administration

7 D OMI Partnership Has Achieved Results  Plant performance and aesthetics –Total federal and state permit compliance –Exceptional nitrogen removal for maximum trading credits –Stable operations through storm events  Pump station reliability –Regular maintenance and inspection schedule (batteries) –Radio telemetry alarms to improve operator response time  Septage receiving program –Automation ensures 100% revenue collection

8 D OMI Partnership Has Achieved Results  Asset management –Vital tool for budgeting and long-term system reliability –Catalog all equipment –Establish major repair and replacement account –Long range capital investment program

9 D OMI Nitrogen Management  Program developed by industry experts gives contractor and WPCA precise monitoring and control  DEP enthusiastic about approach  Incentives for shared revenues for superior performance  Trading credit revenue of $498,663 was second-highest in state in 2002  2003 trading credit revenue was $347,590

10 D OMI Sewer System Management  All sewers have been completely cleaned and inspected for the first time in the City  No sewer backup calls since July  Inspection analysis being combined with Norwalk’s GIS database to make this one of the most advanced sewer management programs in the state

11 D OMI Moving Forward  Detailed energy management plan –Reduce power consumption at plant and pump stations –Cost savings through load-shedding and grant programs  Stormflow treatment system upgrade –New operating procedure for unusually high flows –Reduce stormwater pollution –Significantly reduce combined sewer overflows to the river

12 D OMI Moving Forward  Chlorination system upgrade –New system meets latest industry standards –Allow operators to respond to potential permit violations before they occur –Provide exceptional protection of the Norwalk River ecosystem

13 D OMI Lessons Learned in Norwalk  Public-Private Partnership should focus on achieving service delivery goals, rather than penalties  Management restructuring in Public Works to incorporate contract administration  Need strong contract document complemented by ongoing, face-to-face working relationship  Performance and shared-savings incentives challenge partners to continually improve  Long range planning to set clear goals for the future ( sewer cleaning cycles, inspection etc)


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