What happens after you flush the toilet? It’s a service you use every day, but probably never think about. NEW Water’s dedicated staff are at work 24-7-365 to ensure the safety and security of this vital community service, which protects public health, the environment, and the economy. Here are “10 Things to Know” about this utility which proudly provides cost-effective services for Northeast Wisconsin.
WBAY featured NEW Water's 'out of sight' essential workers in the news, highlighting the unseen workers protecting our most valuable resource, water.
- Public health and safety is at the core of all we do. NEW Water takes seriously its responsibility to ensure protection of public health and safety for the families, business, and industries who rely on this nonstop service. While out of sight, and unfortunately “out of mind,” efforts by sanitary sewerage districts are a cornerstone of public health.
- Environmental stewardship. We operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to meet discharge permits as set out by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Additionally, NEW Water is adopting Adaptive Management through its NEW Watershed Program to achieve permit compliance, a cost-effective approach that will achieve greater environmental gain for the community, for generations to come. NEW Water is proud to partner with U.S. Congressman Mike Gallagher’s “Save the Bay.” Watch Congressman Gallagher’s video featuring NEW Water here.
- Security of operations for community protection. NEW Water takes an aggressive approach to the security and cybersecurity of operations in alignment with best practices, standards, and requirements, as set out by, and in partnership with, agencies including: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Wisconsin Emergency Management, Brown County Emergency Management, and local law enforcement. As NEW Water serves 236,000 residents, it is imperative that security is a key component of all our operations.
- Fiscal responsibility. NEW Water takes a proactive approach to stewardship of financial resources, including: implementing Lean Six Sigma for operational efficiencies and cost savings; achieving permit compliance at the lowest cost; ensuring continuous compliance with Government Accounting Standards; securing low-cost Clean Water Fund financing for infrastructure improvement projects; refinancing of bonds, saving ratepayers an annual $225,000; harnessing resource recovery, to produce electricity and save additional costs; securing grants for activities including education, outreach, research, monitoring, and watershed improvements.
- Commitment to water quality. The community is reliant on a safe, quality water supply. Green Bay and the lower Fox River are designated impaired bodies of water, suffering from pollution and excess runoff. In 2020, NEW Water returned about 14 billion gallons of clean water back into these receiving waters, which flow into Lake Michigan, a major source of drinking water for the residents of Northeast Wisconsin. NEW Water is highly engaged with the water quality community, in partnership with University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Brown County Land & Water Conservation, Fox Demo Farms Network, Clean Bay Backers, The Nature Conservancy, and more.
- National Recognition for Operational Excellence. NEW Water is among a handful of utilities in the nation that has achieved 100% permit compliance for 17 consecutive years from the National Association of Clean Water Agencies. Projects such as Resource Recovery and Electrical Energy (R2E2) and the De Pere Facility electrical generation project are examples of infrastructure improvements driven by regulatory compliance, capacity needs, end of useful life criteria, and system reliability.
- Equitable distribution of costs. Rates are the same for every municipal customer. NEW Water is a wholesale provider of services to 15 municipal customers in Northeast Wisconsin. Each municipality (city, village, town, sanitary district), additionally charges rates to its residents for the maintenance and operations of their own specific sewer systems.
- Municipal customer rates from NEW Water do not subsidize industries and businesses. In addition to the municipal customers served by NEW Water, industries and businesses also contribute to the system. NEW Water is proud to support economic development, as well as equitable distribution of cost, based on usage.
- Planning for continuation of reliable service. NEW Water is actively planning for future needs through Capital Improvement Planning to address stricter environmental limits, aging infrastructure, and capacity concerns related to record rainfalls (which have caused up to three times the amount of water getting into the sanitary sewer system and coming to NEW Water to be cleaned). NEW Water will continue to actively partner with municipal customers to provide cost-effective and reliable services, while upholding our responsibilities for regulatory compliance.
- Get in touch! NEW Water welcomes community engagement. Outreach and education are vital to illustrate the value of the critical service NEW Water provides for the community, and the important role we all play in protecting our precious water resources. Follow us on social media, subscribe to our e-news, request a presentation, take a “virtual” tour, and get in touch! www.newwater.us