September 2022 O&M Newsletter

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September 2022

In this issue:

Training - Certification Update

MEWEA Fall Convention at Sunday River

The Annual Fall Convention will be held on Thursday September 22 & Friday September 23, 2022 at Sunday River Resort. The conference offers an opportunity to attend excellent technical presentations and for water professionals in Maine to get together for the purpose of learning, networking, and perhaps even a little fun.

The convention will kick off as usual with our annual golf tournament on Wednesday, September 21st. You can decide to golf or just spend the day enjoying the scenic area. Please be sure to sign up and attend the Wednesday evening BBQ dinner after the golf tournament.

Thursday and Friday offer technical sessions and vendor exhibits, followed by a Meet & Greet. This is a time to network with vendors, fellow operators, learn more about products and have a good time! The Collection Systems Committee will be hosting the annual cornhole tournament following the Meet & Greet.

The convention is designed to offer something valuable to each one of you, whether you are a long-standing member, brand-new member, student considering entering the field, contractor, vendor, regulator, or an elected official. Together, we make a diverse and amazing group of water professionals, and the convention allows us to connect and learn a lot from each other as well.

For more info, go to

MRWA Administrative Summit

MRWA will hold a one-day virtual Administrative Summit on Wednesday September 28, 2022. The summit will focus on Employee Engagement, Leadership, Compliance, and Governance.

For more information visit

Save the Date – MRWA 42 Annual Conference and Trade Show

MRWA is thrilled to return to the Samoset Resort for their 42nd Annual Conference on December 6-8, 2022 at the Samoset Resort in Rockport, ME. The space is big enough to accommodate the tradeshow and expansive selection of live classes and offers many amenities and expansive ocean views!

More information on room blocks will be available shortly. MRWA highly recommends booking your room sooner rather than later once the room blocks become available. The accommodations located at the Samoset will go fast!
For more information go to

Welcome to the New MRWA Education Development Director

Andrew Snowman is new to the MRWA team serving as the Educational Development Director. He holds a Class II Water Treatment/Distribution License, Grade II Wastewater Distribution License, and an Associate Degree in Education. Andrew has been involved in the water/wastewater industry since 1982 as an operator, superintendent, contract operations, and water district trustee.

Andrew is a 10th generation "Mainer" and enjoys every aspect of rural living. His hobbies include writing and telling short stories about the unique people and places of Washington County, making lures/fly tying, traditional wood working, and spending quality time with family and pets.

Andrew looks forward to assisting people associated with the industry in obtaining comprehensive training and advanced skill sets.

Andrew can be reached at 207-530-6073, email

Operator Educational Opportunities at Southern & Northern Maine Community Colleges

The Water Treatment Technology program is gaining momentum at both SMCC and NMCC.

Join instructors Patrick Wiley (SM) and Gil St. Pierre (NM) for a variety of water and wastewater courses, including collection & distribution systems, instrumentation and control, electronics, and operator safety. Whether you are interested in an associate degree, certificate program, or just need to take a few classes, the community college learning experience can be customized to fit your needs.

Content delivery methods have evolved and expanded to accommodate working professionals with busy schedules. Options include in-person instruction, completely remote learning, or a hybrid of in-person and online learning. Instructors are available to help everyone who wants to learn figure out the best method for them.

Patrick and Gil are not only experienced instructors but are also seasoned operators with many years of hands-on experience in water and wastewater technology. Both hold Grade 5 wastewater certifications. Gil has operated both activated sludge and spray irrigation systems. Patrick has operated a variety of treatment facilities including activated sludge, MBR, RBC, TF, pond systems, and experimental algae-based treatment. He has authored several textbook chapters on wastewater treatment processes and written about wastewater treatment, water treatment, and collection system odor control.

For more information, or to hear about the fall lineup, please contact Patrick Wiley, PhD ( or Gilles St. Pierre (, or check out the website


Monthly Problem Set / For Practice, September

1. What is the volume in gallons of a tank that is 30 ft X 16 X 10 ft?

A. 4800 gal
B. 4800 cf
C. 34,904 gal
D. 36,000 gal

2. A circular tank has a 30 ft diameter and is 12 ft deep. What is the volume in cubic feet?

A. 565.5 cf
B. 8,478 cf
C. 4,716 cf
D. 63,445 cf

3. How many hours will it take to fill a tank that is 63,500 gal if the flow rate is 1.3 MGD?

A. 1.2 hours
B. 4.88 hours
C. 70.3 hours
D. 488 hours

4. What is the TSS removal efficiency for a primary clarifier if the influent TSS is 228 ppm, and the effluent TSS is 87 ppm?

A. 23%
B. 38%
C. 62%
D. 90%

We Need Your HELP! Clean Watershed Needs Survey

The Maine Department of Environmental Protection is reaching out to all Maine municipal and quasi-municipal wastewater entities to gather information on the state’s wastewater infrastructure via our 2022 Clean Watersheds “Needs Survey” (CWNS). The last Official Survey was conducted in 2012, and now the Environmental Protection Agency has launched their request for information to benefit of the state and its communities.

What we need from you now is to provide us with your wastewater needs information that reflects the current situation in your entity. The CWNS has detailed instructions on how to fill out the information on your facility, financial status, and wastewater needs. We encourage you to use any Asset Management Programs (if you have generated them previously) to assist you while evaluating your needs, and we stress that any needs you list in this survey should be consistent with such programs.

Completion of this survey is crucial because it allows the Department to provide the gathered wastewater needs information to both the Executive and Legislative branches of state and federal government, thus justifying funds for both the state match in the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) program and State bonds or sustainable funding mechanisms for grants.

To secure the needed funding for wastewater infrastructure in Maine, our goal is to have 100% participation from all publicly owned treatment works and satellite collection systems. To lend credibility to the survey, costs must be supported by acceptable documentation. A list of the acceptable documentation types will be included in the Needs Information Instructions, coming soon via email. Even if your system has no documented needs, we are requesting that you complete the Facility Information and User Rate Information portions of the survey.

Note: participants in the survey will receive additional points in our annual environmental ranking process, which could mean the difference for some projects in eligibility for Principal Forgiveness. However, we will be limiting our Principal Forgiveness (PF) funds for the next TWO YEARS to those who have participated in the CWNS so that we can prioritize projects with documented needs. While you would still be eligible to request funding in the form of loans, you could miss an opportunity for an available $3.5M-$4M in base SRF funding PF and $8M in supplemental (Bipartisan Infrastructure Law) funding PF per year.

Please submit your completed survey sheets electronically to by December 28, 2022. Electronic submission is preferred, but if it is not possible, please mail to the physical address specified in the General Survey Instructions. Should you have any questions as you fill out the survey please contact Robert Hartley at (207) 881-9490 or Patricia Korbet at (207) 287-7805.

Please complete this survey and help us help you get future money for your system!

Upcoming Training for PFAS Effluent Sampling project

LD 1911, signed on April 22, 2022 allows Maine DEP to require sampling of wastewater effluent from licensed surface and spray irrigation dischargers for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl (PFAS) compounds.

The Division of Water Quality Management (DWQM) will commence a monthly PFAS sampling project beginning October 2022 requiring selected public and private facilities to sample their effluents monthly (or on an alternative schedule for non-continuous dischargers, to be determined) for approximately 10 months. Additionally, the selected spray irrigation facilities with groundwater monitoring wells will be doing quarterly sampling of one well each over the same period, performed by Bureau of Remediation and Waste Management (BRWM) staff for public facilities.

The DEP will be sending a letter to all selected facilities in mid-September that details the project.

PFAS effluent samples will be collected by facility personnel and shipped to a Maine-approved laboratory for analysis by Maine-approved analytical methods. The cost of courier transportation, sample analyses, and reporting for public facilities will be covered under a federal grant. Private facilities will be responsible for covering their own shipping and analysis costs.

All analysis must be performed by a Maine-prequalified laboratory using a Maine-approved analytical method. A list of Maine DEP Prequalified PFAS Laboratories can be found on the DEP website,, under Supplemental Materials. The Maine DEP will be using Alpha Analytical of Westborough, MA and Brewer, ME to analyze and report PFAS results from public facilities.

Results will be used by the Department to establish a baseline of PFAS levels in wastewater treatment plant effluents throughout the state that may be used for future regulation of PFAS chemicals.

In support of this effort, the Department will hold four training sessions throughout the state at DEP Regional offices as follows:

• Sept. 13 – DEP Augusta East Campus at 1:00 PM
• Sept 14 – DEP Presque Isle Regional Office at 10:00 AM
• Sept 15 – DEP Bangor Regional Office at 10:00 AM
• Sept 20 – DEP Portland Regional Office at 10:00 AM

The training is open to personnel from both public and private facilities. Please attend the meeting that is conducted in your region. DEP will offer 2 TCHS for attendees.

Training will be conducted by DEP staff and Alpha Analytical, and will cover the details associated with collecting, handling, preserving, transporting, and reporting results to DEP.

Due to spacing requirements, facilities are asked to send only one staff member to a training event. In accordance with DEP policy, persons attending the training who have not been vaccinated for Covid-19 should be prepared to mask. More details on the training events will follow.

If you have any questions regarding these training opportunities, please contact Jim Crowley, 207-287-8898,, Brett Goodrich at 207-287-9034,, or Judy Bruenjes, 207-287-7806,


Monthly Problem Set / For Practice Answers, September

1. D. 36,000 gal

10’ X 30’ X 12’ = 4800 cf
4800 cf X 7.5 = 36,000 gal

2. B. 0.785 X 30’ X 30’ X 12’ = 8,478 cf

3. A. 1.2 hours

63,500 gal/1,300,000 gal/day = 0.0488 days
0.0488 days X 24 hours/day = 1.2 hours

4. C. 62%

Efficiency = (Value In – Value Out)/Value In X 100
Note: Perform the operation in the parentheses first. Multiply results by 100 to get a percentage.
Efficiency = (228 ppm – 87 ppm)/228 ppm X 100 = 141/228 X 100 = 61.8%, round to 62%.