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NEWSLETTER - SUMMER
June 28, 2005 

OUR MISSION
"To provide water service that is depend- able, economical, and meets or exceeds health standards for all co-operative members”
TOPICS INSIDE
I. President’s Corner
II. Water System Improvements
III. Water Allocation
IV. Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund
V. Annual Water Quality Report and Consumer Confidence Report 
VI. Financial
BWC OFFICE
LOCATION: 5901 Hillside Rd
MAIL: P.O. Box 164
HOURS: 7:30 am – 4:00 pm 
PHONE  410-586-8710 (ph)
            410-586-1963 (fax)
WEB: beacheswater.com
EMAIL: apc@chesapeake.net
EMERGENCY: 410-231-1156
DROP BOX: Outside Gate
Board of Directors
Gary Clarke - President
Bill Bozman – Vice President
Sandy Anderson –  Secretary / Treasurer
Dan Crain - Director
Chris Pappas - Director
Fritz Riedel - Director
Contract Management
Dennis DiBello - Business 
   Manager & Superintendent
Linda Speciale – Receptionist
Jackie Jacob – Bookkeeper
Kenny Grover – Operations Tech.
Ray Foster - Maintenance Tech.

Monthly BWC Meeting
I. President’s Corner

        John Randall, a Director who had been on the Board almost as long as the water company has existed and a long time resident of Calvert Beach, passed away this spring.  His 30 plus years as a Navy Seabee gave him wide ranging knowledge of system maintenance and repair, and we will feel the loss of John’s expertise and input for years to come. 
John Randall

John Randall, Longtime BWC Board Member John Alden Randall, 69, of St. Leonard died April 5, 2005, suddenly at his home due to complications following surgery.  Randall was a retired Navy Master Chief who served with the Seabees for 31 years. He had three tours of duty in Antarctica, including helping to build the South Pole Station in 1957. John was one of eight men to first build and live at the South Pole Station. John also had tours of duty all over the world, including Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean, and ended his career with NACFAC in Alexandria, VA. After his retirement from the Navy in 1986, John worked as project manager at the Naval Research Laboratory in Chesapeake Beach.  He is survived by his wife, Christine Marie Randall; son, Anthony and wife Cecilia; grandchildren, Brooke, Julia and Sarah; father-in-law, Loren Clarke; brother-in-law, Gary Clarke; sister-in-law, Beverly; sisters, Janice Maroney and Mary June Sorensen; brothers, David, Clarence, Lawrence and Harlan; and many devoted friends.  Burial was at Arlington National Cemetery.  Memorial contributions may be sent to the Seabee Memorial Scholarship Association (SMSA), PO Box 6574, Silver Spring, MD 20916.  

Joan Humphreys who has been our Secretary-Treasurer for many years is moving on.  Joan has been involved with the company for over 15 years, first as our bookkeeper and the person who converted our accounting system from 3 X 5 index cards to a computer to track billing and accounting.  Joan is also responsible for establishing our present day financial records and office processes.  Joan is planning to move from the area to be closer to her primary job, which will give her more time for her avocation as an artist.  Look for her work in local galleries.  She captures our bay scene memories on canvas.  We thank Joan for her many years of helping to develop the company we have today. 

       While we, and most small water systems were not initially happy to become “collection agents” for the State in the form of payments to the Bay Restoration Fund, it has proven to be a financially transparent aspect of our business.  The funds are sent directly to the State and we are able to recoup direct costs so that it does not create a financial burden.  We can only hope that those funds are distributed wisely to restore the Bay.

Water Quality
What are contaminants in my drinking water?  Drinking water, including bottled water, may reasonably be expected to contain at least small amounts of some contaminants. The presence of contaminants does not necessarily indicate that water poses a health risk. More information about contaminants and potential health effects can be obtained by calling the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Safe Drinking Water Hotline (800-426-4791).  In order to ensure that tap water is safe to drink, EPA prescribes regulations that limit the amount of certain contaminants in water provided by public water systems.  Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations establish limits for contaminants in bottled water which must provide the same protection for public health.
..
Some Water Quality
 Terms Defined:
Action Level (AL) - The concentration of a contaminant, which, if exceeded, triggers treatment or other requirements, which a water system must follow.

Non-Detects (ND) - Laboratory analysis indicates that the constituent is not present.

Parts per million (ppm) or Milligrams per liter (mg/l) -One part per million corresponds to one minute in two years or a single penny in $10,000.

Parts per billion (ppb) or Micrograms per liter  - One part per billion corresponds to one minute in 2,000 years, or a single penny in $10,000,000.

Treatment Technique (TT)  - A treatment technique is a required process intended to reduce the level of a contaminant in drinking water.

Maximum Contaminant Level  - The “Maximum Allowed” (MCL) is the highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water.  MCLs are set as close to the MCLGs as feasible using the best available treatment technology.

Maximum Contaminant Level Goal  - The “Goal”(MCLG) is the level of a contaminant in the drinking water table (shown below), which there is no known or expected risk to health.  MCLGs allow for a margin of safety.

Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level  - (MRDL) Maximum residual disinfectant level. The highest level of a disinfectant allowed in drinking water. There is convincing evidence that addition of a disinfectant is necessary for control of microbial contaminants

Advertising in BWC Billing

In 2002, Beaches Water Co-op began selling advertisements to be included in our quarterly mail-out.  We have received positive responses from local businesses that have taken advantage of this opportunity.  The income generated from the sale of advertising space offsets the costs of the quarterly billing.
Schedule of Fees
Application/Transfer Fee . $40.00
Quarterly Service ............   $80.00
New Service ............... $3,000.00
Pool (annual) ................. $80.00
Shut-off  ......................  $80.00
         ($40.00
Customer’s Request)
Reconnect ....................  $40.00
Extended Shut-off  ............ $320.00
Return Check  .............. $25.00
Late Penalty One time 10% app- lied 15 days after end of quarter.
Quarterly Billing
January 1 April 1
July 1 October 1
A 10% finance charge is assessed 10 days after the quarter for unpaid bills.

You will note in the budget that a rate hike was necessary this year.  It is important for our members to know that we spent a very long time seeking alternatives to avoid increased costs.  Several of our pump houses were deteriorating and we have been working on necessary repairs and remodeling.  Another major consideration this year is our water allocation permits, which we have spoken about before.  The projected costs for this ongoing challenge are unknown at this point, but we set a budget allocation of $10,000 for associated costs, and we feel that will be a minimum.  We have been working on this issue for a long while and hope that it will finally be resolved this year.  These items will be discussed further in this newsletter.

You can do your part helping to maintain low costs by being aware that clean drinking water has become a precious commodity, and conserving accordingly.  If it becomes necessary to drill new wells in this area, it is possible that those wells may have to be drilled into an aquifer, which is 1600’ deep here, and it will be expensive to do so.

Please attend our annual meeting in September and let us know what you feel we can do to improve our company in coming years.

Sincerely,

Gary Clarke, President


Announcing the Beaches Water Company’s Annual Meeting

Date:  September 11, 2005            Time: 3:00 pm

Location:  Long Beach Civic Center on Calvert Blvd



II. Water System Improvements

In this past year, we have focused on maintaining and rebuilding our infrastructure.  With some parts of our system dating back to the 1930’s and the system evolving as needed over the years, we have many non-standard configurations.   We continue our systematic process of replacing in-ground pipe to eliminate the “old” mains while increasing system control and reliability.  This year we eliminated main sections on Long Beach Road and Flag Harbor Boulevard.  Our “piece meal” approach allows us to work within a yearly budget without a major cost expenditure.  The neediest sections (as determined by past leaks or lack of isolation) get replaced first.  We are also factoring in considerations to get pipe out from under the roadway to eliminate tearing up roads when we have to do work. 

               Our building structures were requiring roof replacements so we took the opportunity to improve those structures as well.  We replaced roofs at the following pumping stations:  Slater, Jorgensen, and Rausch.
In addition, we made improvements at Slater and Rausch by enclosing the outside equipment.  At Slater we enclosed the emergency generator and at Rausch we built a new structure that covers the old pump house as well as the below-grade pneumatic tank. Rausch Pneumatic Tank Enclosure
Slater Generatoer Enclosure We continue to improve the operation of the company in other ways as well.  We are updating AUTOCAD drawings of the system piping.  After an extensive review, we now have the “best guess” of what we have for piping throughout the system.

III. Water Allocation

             The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) permits water allocation to each and every user of water from the underground aquifers.  BWC’s permits have expired.  Our water system, developed in the 1930’s, predates MDE’s permitting of water allocation.  When water allocation was put in place, our allocation was based on the number of existing homes in the community and not the number of homes that would be built as is done with new subdivisions today.  Back then the number used to calculate our allocation may have been a little less than 400 homes.  We now are close to 800 homes and near the end of our potential build out.  Community water allocation is calculated on a per household basis.  We have been negotiating with MDE to determine exactly what needs to be done to increase our allocation.  We have contended that we are not a new user and our original allocation was incorrectly calculated based on the number of existing homes and not on our build out.  This then should allow an administrative paper work change.  MDE does not have any aquifer performance data for our area and therefore would like us to do engineering and hydro geological tests to demonstrate aquifer draw down and replenishment.  Unfortunately, this can be at the costs of over $10,000.00 to prove that the aquifers can meet our daily needs, in which they already do.  No matter the outcome of this situation, in the coming months, we will be hosting public hearings to discuss renewing our water allocation permits.  We have been extremely conservative in our water management and that has allowed the number of homes to rise to our build-out under the existing allocation.  In these public hearings, we will present our needs and request the allocation that should have been originally established for us.  We look forward to your support in this matter.


IV. Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund (BRF)
          Effective January 1, 2005,  Beaches Water Co-op began collecting $7.50 per quarter for the State of Maryland from each customer as required by the BRF legislation.  In 2004, the Maryland State Legislature passed Senate Bill-320 to establish the Bay Restoration Fund.  The purpose of this fund is to improve the environment and water quality of the Chesapeake Bay.  This fund will be used to upgrade wastewater treatment plants and septic systems in the critical area and implement cover crop on agricultural land through an environmental surcharge fee.  Since the BRF does not just apply to those on water and sewer systems, starting October 1, 2005, Maryland County governments will collect $30.00 per year from households on private wells or septic systems.  Additional information is available at  www.mde.state.md.us/water/cbwrf/index.asp

Arsenic and Drinking Water

Dr. Gerhardt Riedel

In Jan. 2001, the EPA reduced the Maximum Concentration Limit (MCL) for arsenic in drinking water from 50 to 10 parts per billion (ppb), with enforcement of this standard to start in January 2006.  (1). This followed several years of study and review, which showed that higher concentrations (100-500 ppb) of arsenic in drinking water caused sickness, including a variety of cancers.  The new MCL was chosen to balance the chance of illness with the costs and difficulty and expense of treating drinking water to remove arsenic.  The lifetime risk of a fatal cancer associated with drinking water at 10 ppb arsenic is estimated to be 0.2% (2). The predominant cancers associated with arsenic are those of lung, bladder and skin. To put that number in perspective, overall cancer death rates in the United State are approximately 23%, the second leading cause of death (3).  It is estimated that approximately 5% of the United States water systems will exceed the new standard, and will have to take some steps to reduce arsenic levels. 

Arsenic is a natural constituent in water, found in rain water, surface waters, seawater, and ground waters.  Concentrations in the groundwater are of the most concern to us, since the drinking water for our community comes from wells.  In Southern Maryland, drinking water is taken from a variety of aquifers, primarily the Nanjemoy, the Aquia, and the Patapsco, which occur at different depths.  The wells of the Beaches Water system are in the Nanjemoy and Aquia aquifers. These aquifers are known to contain somewhat elevated levels of arsenic, between 1-15 ppb, due to the types of minerals present in the aquifers.  The wells in the Beaches Water system have been monitored for arsenic for several years as part of the state mandated water testing, and concentrations ranging from 3 to just over 10 ppb have been observed.

Water from the Beaches Water system is the blended result from several wells, so concentrations in the water supply reflect the mixture of those wells, which is always less than the new 10 ppb standard.  However, we are monitoring the situation, and looking at ways to minimize the concentration of arsenic in our water supply, within our ability to do so.  Our first response was to change the priority of the use of wells on our system, so that two wells (of eight total) which have been observed to produce water with arsenic above the 10 ppb standard are used only when all other wells are at maximum use, guaranteeing that they are diluted below the standard.  However, concentration of arsenic in our wells is not well known (we have only a few measurements over several years), and we are unsure whether the concentrations are constant in a particular well with time.  We are collecting samples in order to check this. 

In the event that further measures to lower the arsenic concentrations of our water supply are necessary, we have a few options.  First would be to take the wells with the highest arsenic concentrations off line. 

Our system has sufficient redundancy in wells that, except under the most extreme water demand periods, we could provide an adequate water supply with the six remaining wells.  Second, we could drill new wells.  This is a very expensive proposition.  New wells in the Nanjemoy or Aquia aquifer would potentially have similar concentrations to those we already have.  To reach an aquifer with low arsenic concentrations would require drilling approximately 1500 ft to the Patapsco aquifer, which would cost approximately $100,000.  Finally, water could be treated to remove arsenic.  Treatment to remove arsenic is difficult on a water system that provides the volume of water that ours does (several million gallons per month on average).  Currently, very few community water systems have the ability to lower concentrations of arsenic because of its difficulty and expense.  However, as this standard is adopted, some treatment systems might be adopted by community systems, and become more readily available.

What can you do about arsenic in the water supply?  Bottled water only has to meet the same standards that Beaches Water system must, so switching to bottled water provides no assurance of lower arsenic concentrations, unless an analysis is presented on the bottle. If you are concerned over the concentration of arsenic in your drinking water you could consider point-of-use treatment systems (4).   These can reduce the levels of arsenic in your drinking water further, and only treats water that is being used for consumption (e.g. not irrigation, laundry and sanitary uses, which form the bulk of our water use).
References
(1)     http://www.epa.gov/safewater/ars/arsenic_finalrule.html  
(2)     http://www.nrdc.org/water/drinking/qarsenic.asp 
(3)     http://seer.cancer.gov/cgi-bin/csr/1975_2002/search.pl#results
(4)     http://www.nsf.org/certified/dwtu/
 

Service Advisory  -- We will be flushing community fire hydrants the week of July 13-17 starting at 9:00 am This may cause the water to be discolored due to disturbing the sediment and deposits in the pipes.  This sediment is naturally occurring minerals in the water.  Discolored water poses no health hazard. It is free from harmful bacteria and safe for all household uses, such as showering, cooking, flushing of toilets, etc. You can drink the discolored water, but it may taste different. However, you should NOT wash clothes in your washing machine if the water is discolored as clothing may stain.  Flush you water lines though an outside hose bib to clear up the discoloration.

V. Annual Water Quality & Consumer Confidence Report
.
Our drinking water is safe and meets all federal and state requirements for community drinking water.  In 2004, there were no water quality violations. Our water quality results are based on the monitoring cycle for the contaminant up to December 31st, 2004.  Terminology used in this report is what is generally accepted as a means of measurement of the degree of contaminates in the water.  Contaminates include natural occurring items in the water such as minerals and foreign matter which may or may not be acceptable based on the level detected.  The amount of containments in our drinking water is well below levels set by the Environmental Protection Agency in all categories.  We routinely monitor for contaminates in your drinking water according to Federal and State laws.  All drinking water, including bottled drinking water, may be reasonably expected to contain at least small amounts of some contaminates.  It's important to remember that the presence of these contaminates does not necessarily pose a health risk.  If you have any questions about the Annual Water Quality Report or concerning your water service, please contact us at 410-586-8710.-

Microbial Results

MCLG

MCL

Level
Detected

Violation

Likely Source of Contamination

Total Coliform Bacteria

0

> 5%
samples

0

NO

Naturally present in the environment

Di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (ppb)

0

6.0

5.0

NO

Discharge from rubber and chemical factories

Arsenic (ppb)

1.0

10

7.0

NO

Natural deposits

Copper (mg/l)

1.3

 

0.12

NO

Natural deposits; corrosion of household piping

Iron - (mg/l)

--

--

0.14

NO

Natural deposits

Fluoride - (mg/l)

4.0

4.0

0.32

NO

Erosion of natural deposits; Leaching

Sodium - (mg/l)

--

--

9.96

NO

Erosion of natural deposits; Leaching

Total Trihalomethanes (mg/l)

n/a

0.80

0.002

NO

By-product of drinking water disinfection

Gross Alpha (pCi/l)

0

15

1.0

NO

Erosion of natural deposits

Gross Beta (pCi/l)

0

50

17

NO

Erosion of natural deposits

Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) has completed a Source Water Assessment of the Beaches Water Company wells in the Nanjamoy and Aquia aquifers.  This report is available in the office for public review. 

Some people may be more vulnerable to contaminants in drinking water than the general population. Immuno-compromised persons such as persons with cancer undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ transplants, people with HIV/AIDS or other immune system disorders, some elderly, and infants can be particularly at risk from infections. These people should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers. EPA/Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines on appropriate means to lessen the risk of infection by Cryptosporidium and other microbiological contaminants are available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline (800-426-4791).

VI. Financial
Although we have been able to defray certain costs; increases in other operating costs and capital expenditures (maintaining and upgrading our system) have made it necessary for us to increase our fees.  The Schedule of Fees below reflects the fiscal year budget for 2006, (7/1/05– 6/30/06) and includes a $5.00 increase in our rates

BWC FY 2006 BUDGET

INCOME

Water service

250,560.00

Pool water service

2,640.00

Space Rental

1,200.00

Advertising-Quarterly

3,600.00

Application & Transfer Fees

2,560.00

Hook ups

12,000.00

Total Income

$272,560.00

 BWC FY 2006 BUDGET

EXPENSES

Auditing

4,500.00

Bad Debt

210.00

Bank Service Charges

210.00

Contributions

210.00

Depreciation Expense

51,591.00

Professional Memberships

420.00

Engineering

525.00

Insurance

10,500.00

Loan Interest

200.00

Mortgage Interest - GMAC

1,340.00

Mortgage Pay Down - GMAC

16,690.00

Mortgage Interest - MDE

1,890.00

Legal

368.00

Licenses and Permits

210.00

Office - Other

4,158.00

Operating Supplies

8,925.00

Repairs & Maintenance

10,500.00

Routine Service

131,905.00

Solid Waste Fee

108.00

Utilities

21,000.00

Water Testing

2,100.00

New Water Allocation Expense

5,000.00

Total Expense

$272,560.00

 

Ruler

Please submit all questions and comments to 
beacheswater5901@gmail.com