Two Carroll County water systems awarded

Tuesday, May 20, 2014
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Blake Winkle, right, accepts the Special Systems Award -- on behalf of the City of Green Forest -- from Ashley Barr, 2014 chairperson for the Arkansas Water Works & Water Environment Association.

HOT SPRINGS -- The City of Green Forest received the Special System Recognition for Wastewater Award at this year's annual Arkansas Water Works & Water Environment Association convention in Hot Springs.

The award recognizes excellence in overall operation and compliance for systems serving fewer than 5,001 in population. Green Forest supports a population of approximately 2,760 and provides a large portion of its service to the Tyson processing plant.

Buddy Fry, public works director for Green Forest, said the five-person team in charge of the wastewater facilities takes great pride in the operation and appearance of all aspects of the facility.

"The grounds are always impeccable, and we have a great maintenance record," he said.

The staff keeps the pipes color-coded and looking sharp, the grass is always mowed, and the facilities are always immaculate. As well, the team sports a tremendous safety record, according to Fry.

Over the years, the wastewater treatment facility has undergone changes to accommodate increasing flow and new permit regulations. Blake Winkle, supervisor of the facility, said they have upgraded various aspects of the facility to successfully accommodate the changing needs.

"The original plant was not built to handle everything it is required to do now," he said. "But we made changes to accommodate the increasing flow and new permit limits.

"This requires more attention by our guys and more hours. I'm out here pretty much seven days a week, but it works very well."

Also at the Hot Springs convention, the Sylvan Shores Water District was awarded the "Small Systems Award" by the Northwest District of the AWW&WEA.

The award is for the outstanding job done by the operators in maintaining a small system (fewer than 5,001 users) and not having any kind of water quality violations through the health department.

More than a dozen community members in the Grassy Knob area contribute their time and effort into maintaining and operating the system for the Sylvan Shores Water District.

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