As part of our commitment to safe, clean, enjoyable creeks and rivers, the San Antonio River Authority (River Authority) is a full-service wastewater utility provider. Our Utilities staff takes part in education and community outreach to better inform our constituents of the services we provide and the challenges of operating and maintaining wastewater collection systems and treatment plants.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, our Utilities Department had to adapt quickly to find ways to stay safe while providing essential public services. While community and student tours of our wastewater treatment plants and classroom visits with our educational graphic collections truck has had to take a pause, the team has focused energies on releasing two new community initiatives that were recently introduced to our constituents.
Utilities Development Advisory Committee
In late October 2020, the River Authority Board of Directors appointed eleven members to the new Utilities Development Advisory Committee (UDAC). The UDAC’s purpose is to incorporate community and industry feedback as we promote sustainable development within the wastewater service areas of the River Authority. The UDAC will advise the River Authority with the review, adoption, and implementation of its land use assumptions, capital improvements plan (CIP), impact fees, and other development-related fees and charges. The group is comprised of community members from stakeholder groups including ratepayers, real estate, building industry, and developers. The second meeting of the UDAC was recently held virtually on February 2, 2021, to review Land Use and Capital Improvements of the Martinez IV Service Area. The committee will submit their recommendations to the Board of Directors to consider in April of this year.
A new quarterly publication titled The Clarifier has published two issues since its inception in September 2020. The Clarifier is dedicated to sharing information with the East Bexar County community our Utilities Department serves. Through this newsletter, some of the topics we look forward to sharing include progress of construction on our upcoming wastewater treatment plant expansions, updates on sewer rates, utility crew highlights, collection system upgrades, and tips for keeping your private laterals and our pipes clear and functioning optimally. Currently, the newsletter is distributed to over 17,000 wastewater service customers and interested parties.
Fun Fact: the newsletter was named after the third step of a six-step process of wastewater treatment process. A clarifier is a settling tank that uses mechanical assistance to clear up or clarify wastewater by removing sediments and solids. You can learn more about this process in the Spring/March 2021 issue.