Latest News – California Water Service https://www.calwater.com Mon, 07 Oct 2019 20:47:03 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.3 California Water Service Launches and Expands Sixth Annual Classroom Conservation Competition https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/california-water-service-launches-and-expands-sixth-annual-classroom-conservation-competition/ Mon, 07 Oct 2019 20:47:03 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6814 Cal Water, in partnership with the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) and DoGoodery, today announced the launch and expansion of the sixth annual Cal Water H2O Challenge. The free, project-based competition invites fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-grade classrooms in Cal Water service areas to develop and implement solutions for water issues. To date, more…

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Cal Water, in partnership with the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) and DoGoodery, today announced the launch and expansion of the sixth annual Cal Water H2O Challenge. The free, project-based competition invites fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-grade classrooms in Cal Water service areas to develop and implement solutions for water issues. To date, more than 250 classrooms have participated in the program. This year, DoGoodery will work alongside Cal Water to expand the elementary student competition to an umbrella program covering multiple tiers for K-12 student and teacher participation.

The revamped and expanded Cal Water H2O Challenge will build on best practices gleaned from five successful years of the classroom-based competition to engage more people in caring for water at a range of levels. In addition to the continuation and expansion of the project-based challenge for grades 4-6 classrooms, the sixth annual Cal Water H2O Challenge will include a K-12 student media competition focused on caring for water, a grants program for teacher-led water projects, new outreach options for teachers interested in water conservation, a water conservation pledge to reach individuals and families, and a new H2O Challenge web series.

The classroom challenge will continue to ask students in grades 4-6 to identify a local or global water issue and work together to address their chosen issue through research and experiments over four to eight weeks. New opportunities from the program expansion will promote awareness of water issues and encourage civic engagement through the K-12 student media competition, provide additional funds and resources for teachers, and expand the reach and impact beyond classrooms to engage individuals, families, businesses, and others through the water pledge and web series.
“The Cal Water H2O Challenge is an immersive experience for everyone involved; it gives students and educators the chance to view water conservation through a unique lens,” said Martin A. Kropelnicki, Cal Water President and CEO. “We’re pleased that, through this partnership with NAAEE and DoGoodery, we can continue to provide quality, service, and value to the communities we serve by engaging our future leaders—and often our best ambassadors—in the importance of water-use efficiency and other water supply issues.”

Judy Braus, NAAEE Executive Director, adds that the project incorporates Common Core State Standards for English, Language Arts, and Math while complementing Next Generation Science Standards. “Participating educators and students are offered an interdisciplinary approach to enhancing students’ understanding of water-based science concepts in their community and the world,” Braus said. “Research has demonstrated that this sort of real-world, problem-solving approach is the most effective way we can reach students and develop the understanding and skills needed to address our most pressing issues.”

The winning classroom will receive $3,500 and an all-expenses-paid camping trip to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area with NatureBridge. Runners-up receive grants and additional prizes for students and teachers. In October 2019, teachers of prize-winning classes from Years 1-5 of the Challenge will attend the NAAEE’s 48th Annual Conference in Lexington, Ky., for a winners’ summit and celebration.

Ms. Emily Akimoto and her fourth-grade students from Sierra View Elementary (Chico, Calif.) won the 2019 grand prize. In the wake of California’s most destructive fire in recorded history, Akimoto’s students felt a call-to-action to help devastated parts of their community and neighboring towns. “We realized this was our way to help. It was empowering for students, and also an outlet for healing,” Akimoto said. “This project has lasting implications. We stabilized a hillside that ran into a small tributary of Butte Creek. We made pamphlets to help those rebuilding think forward in their landscaping choices. While our target was to help the environment and the community, for me, the real target audience was my students. We learned to problem solve. We learned to work together. We learned how to be resilient. We set out to do something to help, and we feel like we did.”

In late 2019, Cal Water will also launch a teacher grant program, water pledge, and free individual challenge aimed at K-12 students living in a Cal Water service area. In the individual challenge, students can create and submit original art (along with a short statement) about caring for water, and prizes will be awarded to the winners. Winners and pledge participants will be highlighted on the Cal Water H2O Challenge site.

For more information about the programs and eligibility requirements, visit challenge.calwater.com.

About NAAEE
For almost five decades, the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) has been dedicated to accelerating environmental literacy and civic engagement using the power of education. NAAEE supports a network of more than 20,000 educators and 56 regional affiliate organizations in North America, as well as partners in more than 30 countries. For more information, visit www.naaee.org.

About DoGoodery
DoGoodery is a social impact agency with storytelling at the heart of its mission. DoGoodery collaborates with partners through all phases of social impact strategy building and storytelling, delivering goodness to audiences and clients alike and amplifying stories of change that empower, elevate, and excite. For more information visit www.dothegoodery.com.

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California Water Service Group Designated Great Place to Work® for Fourth Consecutive Year https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/california-water-service-group-designated-great-place-to-work-for-fourth-consecutive-year/ Mon, 23 Sep 2019 20:59:54 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6789 The Great Place to Work® Institute has certified California Water Service Group (Group) as a Great Place to Work® for the fourth year in a row. This distinction was given to Group for its commitment to employees throughout its California, Hawaii, New Mexico, and Washington subsidiaries. The Great Place to Work® certification includes two components:…

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The Great Place to Work® Institute has certified California Water Service Group (Group) as a Great Place to Work® for the fourth year in a row. This distinction was given to Group for its commitment to employees throughout its California, Hawaii, New Mexico, and Washington subsidiaries.

The Great Place to Work® certification includes two components: first, a Culture Audit© about the company’s programs and practices on hiring, internal communication, developmental opportunities, training, recognition, and diversity; and second, a Trust Index© based on survey feedback from employees about the company. All full-time California Water Service, Hawaii Water Service, New Mexico Water Service, and Washington Water Service employees were asked about their experiences regarding leadership, credibility, respect, fairness, pride, camaraderie, and other important traits of the workplace. Scores were then benchmarked against top U.S. workplaces to determine the company’s results.

“We firmly believe that when a company takes care of its employees, its employees will be its best ambassadors and take care of the company’s customers,” said President and CEO Martin A. Kropelnicki. “I appreciate the Great Place to Work® Institute for recognizing our commitment to our employees, and thank our employees for their commitment to delivering quality, service, and value to our customers, communities, and stockholders every day.”

The 2019 designation certifies California Water Service Group and its subsidiaries as a Great Place to Work® for one year. Fortune magazine’s annual Best 100 Companies to Work For® is compiled from among the companies certified as a Great Place to Work®.

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California Water Service responds to Environmental Working Group study https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/2019-09-19-cws-ewg-study/ Thu, 19 Sep 2019 20:46:59 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6783 Protecting our customers’ health and safety is our highest priority, and we work to ensure our water complies with all water quality standards, or maximum contaminant levels, set by federal and state public health experts to protect customers’ health and safety. These public health experts include toxicologists, epidemiologists, physicians, biostatisticians, and research scientists from the…

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Protecting our customers’ health and safety is our highest priority, and we work to ensure our water complies with all water quality standards, or maximum contaminant levels, set by federal and state public health experts to protect customers’ health and safety. These public health experts include toxicologists, epidemiologists, physicians, biostatisticians, and research scientists from the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, the State Water Resources Control Board’s Division of Drinking Water, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The Environmental Working Group published a new study in the journal Heliyon today stating that carcinogens found in tap water (such as arsenic, disinfection byproducts, uranium, radium) cumulatively could still cause cancer over a person’s lifetime, even when the constituents individually meet water quality standards.

When setting maximum contaminant levels (MCLs), the public health experts carefully weigh not just economic but also technological feasibility to treat and detect the constituents with the risk when drinking the water over a person’s entire lifetime. Even though constituent levels may not be treated to zero (or non-detect), these public health experts have confirmed that, when under the MCL, consumers can use and drink the water with confidence.

We want our customers to know as much as possible about the quality of their water. That’s why we encourage all of our customers to review the annual report for their water system. Data for every constituent detected in the local water supply is included in our annual Consumer Confidence Report. These reports can be accessed on our web site or by calling our Customer Center.

This issue does shed light on the importance of protecting our water resources. While we are doing our part to treat the water and meet the standards the public health experts have set, it’s important that our population as a whole focuses on being good stewards of the environment and takes steps to prevent impacting the water supply.

Additional information can be found at the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, the State Water Resources Control Board’s Division of Drinking Water, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

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Water Infrastructure Improvement Project Begins in Kern River Valley https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/water-infrastructure-improvement-project-begins-in-kern-river-valley/ Thu, 19 Sep 2019 20:24:32 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6782 Cal Water has started a water infrastructure upgrade in its Kernville system to enhance water quality for customers in the area. Crews are installing granular-activated carbon (GAC) treatment facilities at the utility’s station on Sirretta Street to treat for additional constituents in the water supply. The project began this month after a pilot treatment project…

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Cal Water has started a water infrastructure upgrade in its Kernville system to enhance water quality for customers in the area. Crews are installing granular-activated carbon (GAC) treatment facilities at the utility’s station on Sirretta Street to treat for additional constituents in the water supply.

The project began this month after a pilot treatment project reduced the potential for disinfection byproducts to form. Levels of disinfection byproducts had risen in a small area of Kernville due to higher levels of naturally occurring total organic carbon (TOC) in the Kern River, Cal Water’s local water source, combining with the disinfection needed to make the water safe to use and drink. Cal Water expects to complete the permanent treatment facility in December.

“This water infrastructure upgrade is an important step to ensure we can deliver safe and reliable water service to local residents and businesses,” said Local Manager Jon Yasin. “Investments in our infrastructure such as this are the cornerstone of our promise to deliver quality, service, and value to our customers, and we look forward to continuing to provide the reliable, high-quality water service that our customers expect and deserve.”

The work will be performed Monday through Friday between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Crews will make every effort to minimize any impact to the community during construction, and traffic control will be implemented as needed to help residents and crews travel safely through the area. Crews will also work with residents in the immediate construction area to ensure they have access to their driveways.

Water service is not expected to be interrupted during the project; however, if it becomes necessary to do so temporarily, crews will make every effort to notify residents beforehand.

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California Water Service’s Water Quality Laboratory Reaccredited by State Water Resources Control Board https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/california-water-services-water-quality-laboratory-reaccredited-by-state-water-resources-control-board/ Wed, 18 Sep 2019 08:32:54 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6779 The Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (ELAP) has renewed its certification of Cal Water’s Water Quality Laboratory, enabling the utility to continue conducting in-house testing of water quality samples collected throughout its service areas statewide. The stringent ELAP accreditation, which the utility has held since 1999, is administered by the State Water Resources Control Board. To…

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The Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (ELAP) has renewed its certification of Cal Water’s Water Quality Laboratory, enabling the utility to continue conducting in-house testing of water quality samples collected throughout its service areas statewide. The stringent ELAP accreditation, which the utility has held since 1999, is administered by the State Water Resources Control Board.

To maintain the certification, the lab must perform a blind study, or Performance Test, (PT) for every constituent the lab is accredited to test for. The PT sample is a blind sample where both the contaminant and concentration must be identified and reported within established limits to a state-certified, independent testing agency.

Additionally, Cal Water undergoes an onsite audit about every two years to ensure that its practices remain ethical and in accordance with the ELAP Standards. If the lab were to fail the certification or the audit, the laboratory would no longer be permitted to conduct testing for the particular field of testing.

“As part of our commitment to providing our customers with quality, service, and value, we go to great lengths to ensure our water quality experts and equipment are among the best in the industry,” said Martin A. Kropelnicki, President and CEO. “Additionally, by being certified to perform water quality tests in house at our state-of-the-art lab, we are able to keep costs lower for customers, receive test results faster, and maintain a tightly controlled testing environment.”

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California Water Service named Corporate Partner of the Year by California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/2019-chcc-cws/ Wed, 18 Sep 2019 02:26:21 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6773 Citing the utility’s exemplary leadership and dedication to diversity, along with its commitment to providing quality, service, and value to its customers and communities, the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CHCC) honored California Water Service (Cal Water) as its Corporate Partner of the Year during the association’s 40th annual statewide convention in Stockton, Calif. Cal…

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Citing the utility’s exemplary leadership and dedication to diversity, along with its commitment to providing quality, service, and value to its customers and communities, the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CHCC) honored California Water Service (Cal Water) as its Corporate Partner of the Year during the association’s 40th annual statewide convention in Stockton, Calif.

Cal Water, which provides safe, reliable, and high-quality drinking water service to more than 100,000 people in Stockton and about 2 million people throughout its service areas statewide, has long supported the San Joaquin County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (SJCHCC), the host Chamber for this year’s convention. The utility has been actively involved in donating time and resources to the SJCHCC’s efforts to support local businesses.

At the convention, experts from multiple Cal Water departments participated in seminars and panel discussions on procurement, emergency preparedness, leadership, and business incentives to educate and assist attendees. The utility was also a platinum sponsor of the convention.

Cal Water President and CEO Martin A. Kropelnicki accepted the award on behalf of the utility at the CHCC Gala Awards Dinner, and spoke about the utility’s commitment to improving the quality of life for its customers and communities by valuing diversity.

“Our communities are diverse, and our employee base is diverse,” Kropelnicki said. “By having a strong supplier diversity program and engaging minority-, woman-, and disabled veteran-owned businesses in our own communities to provide goods and services to our customers, we can all benefit from diversity.”

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Cal Water Establishes Emergency Relief Program for Customers Affected by Natural Disasters https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/california-water-service-establishes-emergency-relief-program-for-customers-affected-by-natural-disasters/ Mon, 16 Sep 2019 21:00:22 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6772 In the wake of devastating wildfires impacting California residents over recent years, Cal Water has created an emergency disaster relief program to protect customers affected by wildfires and other natural disasters. The program, established in accordance with California Public Utilities Commission D. 19-07-015, extends water service protections to both residential and small business customers. As…

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In the wake of devastating wildfires impacting California residents over recent years, Cal Water has created an emergency disaster relief program to protect customers affected by wildfires and other natural disasters. The program, established in accordance with California Public Utilities Commission D. 19-07-015, extends water service protections to both residential and small business customers.

As part of the program, following a disaster, Cal Water will automatically close accounts for homes destroyed and waive the final bill; suspend collection activities including disconnection for non-payment and related fees; waive any deposit requirements for those seeking to reestablish service; offer extended payment plan options on a case-by-case basis; provide bill credits for customers who had to evacuate or whose homes become uninhabitable, to account for the time not able to be home; and freeze certification reviews for its low-income ratepayer assistance program. Additional provisions and program details are available at www.calwater.com/disasterrelief.

“Part of our commitment to our customers and communities includes supporting those who have been affected by natural disasters,” said Martin A. Kropelnicki, President and CEO. “And, in order to continue fulfilling our promise to provide quality, service, and value, we want to take comprehensive, meaningful steps to make our customers’ water service one less thing they need to worry about.”

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Water Infrastructure Improvement Project Completed in King City https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/water-infrastructure-improvement-project-completed-in-king-city/ Tue, 10 Sep 2019 23:13:44 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6757 Cal Water has completed a water infrastructure upgrade in King City that will strengthen water system reliability and infrastructure resiliency for customers’ everyday needs. The upgrade will also enhance fire protection to ensure firefighters have access to the water supplies they need during an emergency. The project, which began in June, included the installation of…

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Cal Water has completed a water infrastructure upgrade in King City that will strengthen water system reliability and infrastructure resiliency for customers’ everyday needs. The upgrade will also enhance fire protection to ensure firefighters have access to the water supplies they need during an emergency.

The project, which began in June, included the installation of 1,660 feet of new 8-inch PVC water main. Crews also installed two new fire hydrants and 22 new 1-inch customer service connections. Installation took place on Talbot Street, from Canal Street to South Mildred Avenue; South Mildred Avenue, from Bassett Street to Luckett Street; and Luckett Street, from South Mildred Avenue to South San Lorenzo Avenue.

“These improvements will benefit King City residents for years to come by protecting against leaks and ensuring we can continue to provide safe and reliable water service. Firefighters will also benefit from improved fire flow, which will enhance their ability to protect the community in an emergency,” said Local Manager Marc Bloom. “Infrastructure investments such as this project in King City are a critical part of our promise to deliver quality, service, and value to our customers and community.”

Crews conducted water quality testing before individual water services were connected to the new main. Crews have also restored all impacted streets, sod, and landscaping.

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California Water Service Launches Firefighter Grant Program https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/california-water-service-launches-firefighter-grant-program/ Tue, 03 Sep 2019 21:12:23 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6743 Cal Water announced today it has officially opened its new Firefighter Grant Program. Uniformed fire departments, whether professional or volunteer, that serve at least a portion of one of Cal Water’s service areas are invited to apply for grants under the $60,000 program, which provides funding that may be used to offset costs associated with…

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Cal Water announced today it has officially opened its new Firefighter Grant Program. Uniformed fire departments, whether professional or volunteer, that serve at least a portion of one of Cal Water’s service areas are invited to apply for grants under the $60,000 program, which provides funding that may be used to offset costs associated with fire protection efforts, equipment, training, and education.

“Through the California Water Service Firefighter Grant Program, we are proud to support the brave men and women who work tirelessly to protect our communities by celebrating their service in a truly meaningful way,” said Martin A. Kropelnicki, Cal Water President and CEO. “We recognize the value and importance of reliable water service for first responders’ emergency needs and hope to continue to support organizations that play such an important role in the safety and protection of our communities.”

To apply to the 2019 Firefighter Grant Program, eligible fire departments must provide a completed application form; documentation of the cost for the equipment, product, or service for which the grant would be used; and a copy of the department’s or parent organization’s (e.g., city or county) W9 Tax Identification Form. For more information about the Firefighter Grant Program or to submit an application, applicants can visit www.calwater.com/firefightergrant or email firefightergrant@calwater.com.

The annual grant program is part of California Water Service Group’s stockholder-funded philanthropic giving program, and grants are not paid for through customers’ rates. The application period for the first annual program will close at 11:59 p.m. PT on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019. Grant recipients will be notified by December 2019.

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Two Water Infrastructure Improvement Projects Completed in Bakersfield https://www.calwater.com/latest_news/two-water-infrastructure-improvement-projects-completed-in-bakersfield/ Wed, 28 Aug 2019 20:40:52 +0000 https://www.calwater.com/?post_type=latest_news&p=6733 Cal Water has completed two water infrastructure upgrades in Bakersfield that will strengthen water system reliability and infrastructure resiliency for customers’ everyday needs. Additionally, the upgrades will provide enhanced fire protection to ensure firefighters have access to the water supply they need during an emergency. The first project, which began in March, included the installation…

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Cal Water has completed two water infrastructure upgrades in Bakersfield that will strengthen water system reliability and infrastructure resiliency for customers’ everyday needs. Additionally, the upgrades will provide enhanced fire protection to ensure firefighters have access to the water supply they need during an emergency.

The first project, which began in March, included the installation of 2,700 feet of new 12-inch water main along Stockdale Highway, west of McDonald Way to Real Road. The second project, which began in April, included the installation of 4,205 feet of new Pmain near Bakersfield College. Cal Water worked closely with the City of Bakersfield to conduct pipeline installation before the City’s street reconstruction project, which reduced additional costs for paving.

“Cal Water is pleased to complete these two important infrastructure projects, which improve the capacity and reliability of the water system for our customers and first responders,” said District Manager Geoff Fulks. “We’d like to thank our customers for their patience and cooperation as we completed these upgrades, which will help us fulfill our ongoing promise to deliver quality, service, and value to our Bakersfield customers.”

For both projects, crews conducted water quality testing before individual water services were connected to the new mains. At the completion of the projects, crews restored all impacted streets, sod, and landscaping.

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