Providing cost-conscious communication techniques and programs for safe drinking water.
Water utilities are facing numerous hurdles in their efforts to protect public health and safety, by providing safe, clean water; they are challenged by aging infrastructure, cybersecurity threats, declining revenues, emerging contaminants, drought, and a shortage of skilled workers. Not all of the Commonwealth’s public water systems share the same vulnerabilities, but all will be impacted in some way by changes in water use patterns, the depletion or contamination of natural resources, and regulatory compliance issues.
Water professionals have traditionally flown under the wire in performing their work, however with the evolving media landscape, and the essential role water plays in our every-day-life highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever that water utilities are prepared to respond to the challenges that they face in providing consumers with safe drinking water in a proactive manner.
The Water Research Foundation has found that nearly half of all water utilities have no communication plan or dedicated staff performing communications and community outreach work. In a post-pandemic environment, how many utilities can afford to have a full-time staff member perform communications or community outreach work? At Capital Strategic Solutions, we partner with our clients to implement cost-conscious communication techniques, and programs to build trust through transparency. Our clients benefit from having an on-call dedicated communications staff, with over two decades of experience communicating about sensitive water quality issues for a fraction of the cost of an additional staff member.
We assisted the Town of Plainville, Department of Public Works perform outreach when the Plainville public water system faced many challenges in its efforts to produce and deliver clean, safe drinking water to the residents and commercial customers it serves.
“Having Capital Strategic Solutions on board allowed our team to focus on reducing the TTHM and HAA5 levels in our system and address the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection Agency violations, while they addressed the concerns of our customers through open dialogue and transparent communications,”said Dennis Morton, Plainville Public Works Operations Manager.
Our team is currently working with the Town of Easton, Department of Public Works providing public outreach services regarding the quality of water in Easton and addressing community member’s concerns regarding the elevated levels of PFAS6 in their drinking supply.
"PFAS is an evolving issue. The new, more stringent PFAS limits recently put into place by MassDEP are designed to ensure Massachusetts water supplies are safe, and what is most important is that we make certain Easton's water supply meets those targets. The Town started testing for PFAS almost a year before any MassDEP regulations became a reality, and this was because we felt it was an important component to monitor within the Town water supply. That proactive approach continues today as we work towards addressing the contaminants in question,’’ said David Field, Easton DPW Director. “We have been working with Capital Strategic Solutions to keep the public informed as we work with local and state officials to develop, design, and implement the most prudent solution for our community. Nichol and her team have been assisting our Water Division by responding to the concerns of our community, which has allowed us to focus on our next steps.”
When you think of water, you must begin to think about the source of water and the best way to protect our drinking water is to protect the sources. We are working with communities throughout Massachusetts to protect local waterways through small municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) education and outreach.
We are working with the Central Massachusetts Regional Stormwater Coalition (CMRSWC) to enhance stormwater educational outreach by utilizing the social media platforms Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.“
Stormwater management is an example of a decentralized problem, which requires amelioration across landscapes and on both private and public property. To achieve the participation of all stakeholders – the concerns of all stakeholders must be considered.” stated Kerry Reed, Senior Stormwater & Environmental Engineer, Framingham Department of Public Works.“Having Capital Strategic Solutions on board with our MS4 Public Outreach Program has allowed our partner communities to reach a variety of community members by sharing internet-based educational resources.”
We would like to partner with you to build a cost-conscious community outreach plan! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 508-690-0046.