Rector Water Department Recognized for Excellence
The efforts of City of Rector superintendent Todd Watson and the city's Water Department were recognized with the presentation of the Water Works Special Systems Award from the Arkansas Waterworks and Water Environment Association during the AWW and WEA awards luncheon in Hot Springs April 30. The state-level award of excellence recognizes the efforts and contributions of water systems serving population areas of less than 5,001.
The award is made even more memorable due to the fact a department must be nominated for recognition by peers from other cities or municipalities.
"I don't know who nominated us," city superintendent Todd Watson said. "I've got some ideas, but I can't say for certain. What I do know is that the entire Rector Water Department works hard and is honored to have that work recognized."
The city received a district-level award in January, qualifying for the state recognition. Rector also received the Special Systems Award in 2010 at both the district and state level.
ADH, ADEQ and ARWA members throughout the year visit every water department in the state. The departments are reviewed on their everyday operations, records, systems, compliance, personnel training and qualifications.
"You've got to be on top of everything," Watson said. "When they come here, they look at everything to make sure the department is doing what it's supposed to and taking care of the people."
When evaluating a department for awards, numerous factors are taken into consideration, including recommendations from peer departments, reference letters from mayors, performance history and state evaluations.
"We're not the biggest department, but we've got people that work for us who really care about the people here and are willing to work hard to provide the best water department they can," Watson said. "You can't measure something like that. I'm proud to work with everyone in this department."
Watson is responsible for all utilities and city services for the town of Rector. With 22 years of experience, he supervises seven employees and manages the Water and Wastewater Departments for the city, serving just over 1,300 service connections.
Rector's system consists of a modern water/sewer system with three deep wells, a 250,000 gallon storage tank and a lagoon/sand filter sanitation system. The city has recently purchased several generators to maintain its water and sewer systems in the event of an emergency, in addition to providing electricity for city hall and the Rector Community Center.