September 2019 O&M Newsletter

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September 2019

In this issue:


Sept. 11 - NEWEA - Small Community Conference, Providence R.I., Variable TCH

Sept. 17 - MRWA - Test Taking Tips & Tricks, Westbrook, BLWSO 4 TCH, DEP 4 TCH

Sept. 18 - MRWA - Practical Legal Guide for Hiring Employees: Manage Your Risk While Hiring the Best Employees, Ellsworth, DEP 3 Management TCH

Sept. 18, 19, & 26 - MRWA - Very Small Water System (VSWS) Certification Exam Preparatory Course (3 Day Course), Richmond, BLWSO 15 TCH, DEP 7.5 TCH

Oct. 1, 3, 8, & 10 - MRWA - Class I Water Treatment Certification Preparatory Course (4 Day Course), Richmond, BLWSO 20 TCH, DEP 10 TCH

Oct. 3 - JETCC - Chemistry Basics for Operators, Ellsworth, BLWSO 6 TCH, DEP 6 TCH

Oct. 9 - JETCC - Pipe Locating for Water & Sewer Utilities, Presque Isle, BLWSO 6 TCH, DEP 6 TCH

Oct. 10 - JETCC - Pipe Locating for Water & Sewer Utilities, Hampden, BLWSO 6 TCH, DEP 6 TCH

Oct. 15 - MRWA - Test Taking Tips & Tricks, Richmond, BLWSO 4 TCH, DEP 4 TCH

Oct. 16 - JETCC - What Every Wastewater Operator Should Know, Bridgton, DEP 6 TCH

Oct. 16 Thru 18 - NEWEA - Annual Northeast Residuals & Biosolids Conference, Springfield MA, Variable TCH

Oct. 22, 24, 29, & 31 - MRWA - Class I & II Distribution Certification Exam Preparatory Course (4 Day Course), Hampden, BLWSO 20 TCH, DEP 10 TCH

Oct. 23 & 24 - JETCC - Wastewater 101, Brunswick, DEP 12 TCH

Oct. 31 - JETCC - Introduction to Microscopes, Waterville, BLWSO 6 TCH, DEP 6 TCH

Management Candidate School

JETCC is pleased to announce that the 11th year of Management Candidate School will begin on November 20th in York. Thank you to the York Sewer District for hosting the Class of 2020!

The Management Candidate School (MCS) is an 11-month training program that provides the intensive training, networking and skill-development coursework necessary to prepare the next generation of water and wastewater managers and leaders. With many of Maine's current water and wastewater managers at or near retirement age, it is hoped that the individuals who complete the MCS program will be able to continue the critical work of managing the state's water and wastewater treatment infrastructure. This exciting training program is aimed at mid-level operators with management potential.

This year’s MCS class of 19 wastewater and water operators will be graduating at the MEWEA Convention in September, bringing the total number of MCS graduates to 194.  Visit JETCC’s website at for updates.

Wastewater Operator School

JETCC would like to announce that the popular Wastewater Operator School will once again be offered in 2020.   This 6-month, 12-session school will give in-depth training to entry level operators, technicians, and other personnel seeking to increase their understanding of biological wastewater treatment concepts.

Classes will be held at the Portland Water District and other southern Maine treatment facilities and will meet every-other Thursday beginning January 9th.   Instruction will be led by industry consultants and professionals drawn from agencies and municipalities. Visit JETCC’s website at for updates.

MRWA Offers Classes for Certification Exam Prep

No matter how well prepared you are for your certification exam, there will always be questions that throw you for a loop. This fall MRWA will offer two classes to help operator’s get ready for their exams. The first, Test Taking Tips & Tricks is a 4-hour course designed to teach techniques for taking multiple choice exams. The course is not intended to replace the study an operator must undertake to prepare for a certification exam, but it will certainly help in those tight situations.

If you find math questions challenging, or it’s been awhile since you’ve been in school, a math refresher might be the answer. Break out those calculators for the Grade I & II Math Review, a 2-day course designed to cover applied math problems you may see on the test or use in your daily work as an operator.

For more information on these courses, call 207-737-4092 or go to

And for those more experienced operators who may be interested in teaching some of these prep courses, please call MRWA or visit their website for details at

Emergency Sludge Dewatering Grants Available

The Department of Environmental Protection recently notified all POTWs via email of the availability of a Department grant to assist with sludge management issues related to PFAS. This grant is only being offered to POTWs without onsite dewatering capabilities.

The Department is aware that POTWs that do not have on site sludge dewatering capabilities are particularly limited in sludge management options. To help expand sludge management options at these facilities, the Department is offering grant assistance for:

1. Contracting a Professional Engineer to evaluate onsite dewatering options and prepare a preliminary engineering report (PER) with the recommended option.  The PER may be used as a basis for future grant or loan financing to construct the selected dewatering option.

2. Emergency one-time contract dewatering services if no other practical alternatives exist currently for management of stored sludge.

Because the PFAS issue is still evolving, future management options for sludge are uncertain.  Therefore, it is recommended that these facilities evaluate onsite dewatering options now, so that they can ensure the widest range of possible future sludge management options such as: land spreading, landfilling, composting and incineration.  The Department is strongly encouraging these facilities to take advantage of this grant funding. 

Additional details on this grant offer is available in the email, (subject line:  Emergency Sludge Dewatering State Wastewater Infrastructure Planning and Construction Grants Available), and the DEP webpage at:

Any questions on the grant should be directed to: John True (287-7808) or Brandy Piers (287-6093).

Any other questions related to PFAS issues should be directed to Carla Hopkins (215-3314) or Dave Burns (287-7890). 

Additional information on PFAS can be found at the DEP website: