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Posted on: August 20, 2019

Your Utility Payments At Work

photos of public works staff doing work

Your utility bill payments fund and support critical infrastructure improvements that allow us to provide reliable water, garbage, and sewer services.

Our Public Works & Utilities team takes pride in delivering high quality utility services. Dedicated staff operate and maintain City infrastructure and provide the essential services that 65,000 residents depend on daily. Your utility bill payments fund and support critical infrastructure improvements that allow us to provide reliable water, garbage, and sewer services.

Staff handling water main pipesManholeStaff auditing recyclinglab staff

KEEPING SEWER PIPELINES FLOWING

Our Sewer Collections team operates and maintains over 125 miles of sewer pipelines, 80 miles of storm sewer lines, 14 storm sewer pump stations and 14 sewer lift stations to ensure wastewater arrives to the Treatment Plant without problems. Many of Watsonville's sewer pipes were constructed over 80 years ago and did not account for additional flow create by recent development. To prevent sewer overflows and keep our system flowing, we've been repairing and replacing deteriorated lines, lift stations, and manholes.

SEWER MAIN IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS COMPLETED IN 2018/2019

  • Installed 16 new manholes
  • Cleaned over 200 feet of sewer pipeline
  • Video inspected 9,000 feet of sewer lines

SEWER SYSTEM REPLACEMENT PROJECTS

  • Davis Ave. & Carey Ave.
  • Progress Ave.
  • Union St.
  • Miles Lane
  • Rogge Lane
  • Carr St. & Center St.
  • None Ave. to Whitney Ave.

REPLACING AGING WATER INFRASTRUCTURE

The Water Main Replacement Program is a proactive plan to replace and improve our aging water infrastructure before unexpected breaks or disruptions occur. This year our Water Service Division replaced almost 2 miles of water lines that were over 80 years old, added new hydrants and service lines, and paved those street areas.

WATER MAIN IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS COMPLETED IN 2018/2019 

  • Marchant St.
  • Maple St.
  • Bockius St
  • Grant St.
  • Elm St.
  • Blackburn St.

Our staff plans, designs, and constructs all aspects of the Water Main Replacement Program, allowing us to keep costs low to continue delivering safe drinking water.

HANDLING OUR CITY'S SOLID WASTE

Now that our landfill has reached capacity and closed, all garbage and recyclables are being transported to Monterey Regional Waste Management District in Marina for disposal. This year the Solid Waste division invested in two new garbage trucks to manage construction and development waste throughout town.

COLLECTING FOOD SCRAPS

A new State mandate requires cities to collect food scraps separately for composting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In order to comply, our Solid Waste team has begun:

  • Collecting food scrap recycling from over 50 businesses
  • Working with schools to initiate food scraps recycling
  • Developing a pilot program for residential food scrap collections,

ENSURING YOUR WATER QUALITY - FROM WELL TO TAP

Every day our Public Works & Utilities Water Department pumps, treats, tests, and delivers nearly 7 million gallons of safe drinking water from local City groundwater wells and creeks to your homes, schools, and businesses. Our potable water meets all State and Federal drinking water regulations.

At Watsonville’s State-certified Water Quality Lab, our Lab Techs. test 20- 30 potable water samples weekly for bacteria, color, odor, and turbidity.

TREATING AND RECYCLING WASTEWATER

At our Wastewater Recycling Plant, we receive and recycle about 6 million gallons of wastewater every day. Extensive monitoring and testing ensures compliance with all local, State, and Federal pollution prevention laws. This recycled water is then used to irrigate approximately 2,000 acres of crops in the Pajaro Valley.

Treating wastewater produces byproducts like "biosolids" and methane. The biosolids get transported to the Central Valley for use as fertilizer for non-food crops, like cotton. Methane gas gets captured and converted to electricity that helps power the Wastewater Treatment Plant. This year, investments were made to upgrade the co-generator to be able to produce enough electricity to run the entire plant. The facility also replaced a number of structures that had come to the end of their useful life.

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