Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 32

I use this as an example because,
unless you're riding horses, it's something
that we can all relate to. Most if not all
of us are guilty of the same thing, as are
a lot of water systems when it comes to
funding deprecation. Just like vehicles,
water system infrastructure wears out
(depreciates) over time. At some point,
patching it back together is just not
the wisest financial course - it simply
needs to be replaced. Sometimes this
is because it's obsolete, it's too small to
meet the growing system demand, or
time has taken its toll and worn it out. Of

32

THIRD QUARTER 2017

874328_Kamstrup.indd 1

course, unlike vehicles, an aging water
system, as most across our nation have
gotten to be, is dealing with this regularly,
perhaps even yearly.
As I've worked with water systems,
it seems that one of the obstacles to
systems getting in a financially secure
position - now and for the future - is the
reluctance on the part of elected officials
to fund the true cost of the system. Not
simply operation and maintenance, but
setting aside funds to replace the system
at the rate that it's depreciating, so when
the day arrives that a pump, a tank or

24/06/17 1:10 am

just water lines need to be replaced, the
money for that asset has been saved
and set aside. I think a lot of this comes
from the fact that since the operation
is community-based, their customers
are also their friends, neighbors and
acquaintances who they know on a much
more personal level than do other utility
managers such as power or gas, which
typically lends them a certain anonymity,
since these systems often cover a much
larger geographic area. They see their
customers on a more personal level and
thus better perceive the impact a rate
increase might cause as they interact with
them. Therefore they are often hesitant
to add to their financial challenges by
increasing rates.
There are many ways to rationalize
this - "let the next administration deal
with it, because we're focused on other
city improvements," or the thinking
that "it will be easier in the future
because as our customer base grows,
potentially we'll have greater revenues."
Unfortunately, that seldom seems to
work out. Now admittedly, it's difficult,
if not impossible, to predict what the
cost of things will be next year, much
less decades into the future. And this
sometimes seems to be part of the
justification for not setting money aside
- that when the time arrives, they won't
have enough money and will have to get a
loan anyway. However, as an increasingly
greater percentage of our system assets
across the nation are arriving at their
"expiration" date, the parade of systems
into the various funding agencies is
growing exponentially - which, in turn,
creates a growing competition for money,
as funding resources are stretched ever
wider and thinner. Having some money
set aside for the system to contribute
to the project will often allow funding
agencies to offer them better terms
and rates.
On the flip side, I've had system
officials frankly admit to me that they
wanted to maintain a "financially poor"
system, rationalizing that this would
put them in a better position to allow
governmental funding agencies to
justify giving them grants, or worst case
scenario, no-interest loans. Sadly, this has
been proven out in the past - government
officials, presented with a system that has


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017

From the President
Surviving Hurricanes
Emergency Preparedness
Indiana Teamwork During a Flood Emergency
Rates and Long-Term Sustainability
Technology: Ammonia – A Growing Problem with a Practical Solution
Emergency Management: Biological Wastewater Treatment Toxicity
Insurance: Commercial General Liability Coverage Basics
A Day in the Life of a Circuit Rider
Regulatory Update
Case Study: Installing Granular Activated Carbon Today to Prevent Regulatory Issues in the Future
Cleared for Takeoff
Up the Creek: Birdfeeder Politics
Index to Advertisers/ Advertisers.com
From the CEO
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - intro
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - cover1
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - cover2
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 3
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 4
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 5
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 6
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 7
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 8
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 9
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 10
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - From the President
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Surviving Hurricanes
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 13
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 14
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 15
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 16
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 17
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Emergency Preparedness
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 19
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 20
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 21
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 22
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 23
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 24
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 25
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 26
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Indiana Teamwork During a Flood Emergency
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 28
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 29
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 30
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Rates and Long-Term Sustainability
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 32
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 33
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 34
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Technology: Ammonia – A Growing Problem with a Practical Solution
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 36
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 37
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 38
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Emergency Management: Biological Wastewater Treatment Toxicity
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 40
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 41
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 42
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Insurance: Commercial General Liability Coverage Basics
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 44
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - A Day in the Life of a Circuit Rider
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 46
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Regulatory Update
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 48
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 49
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 50
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Case Study: Installing Granular Activated Carbon Today to Prevent Regulatory Issues in the Future
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 52
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Cleared for Takeoff
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 54
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Up the Creek: Birdfeeder Politics
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 56
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 57
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - Index to Advertisers/ Advertisers.com
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 59
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 60
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - From the CEO
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - 62
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - cover3
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2017 - cover4
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