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Water department to be awarded

Representatives of Ironton’s water department will travel to Columbus Friday for recognition during Ohio’s Drinking Water Week.

Thursday, May 10, 2001

Representatives of Ironton’s water department will travel to Columbus Friday for recognition during Ohio’s Drinking Water Week.

Ironton is one of five public water systems being recognized by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency for outstanding practices.

"We were really excited when we were notified of this award," said Jennifer Donahue, water superintendent. "We were especially excited because we went from one of the worst to one of the best."

Other water systems being recognized at Ohio EPA offices in Columbus include the City of Middletown, Ohio American Water Company in Tiffin, City of Portsmouth, and the Village of Sebring in Mahoning County.

These five public drinking water systems are being recognized for maintaining 100 percent compliance with the safe drinking water standards, the Safe Drinking Water Act and requirements of Ohio drinking water laws, said Linda Fee Oros of OEPA.

In addition, the five systems have not been referred to Ohio EPA for enforcement consideration in the past three years.

Mrs. Donahue attributed Ironton’s success to the city water department’s skilled and dedicated staff, as well as changes in treatment plant design.

"This is an award that recognizes the job everybody does, from treatment to billing to meter readers and repair crews," she said.

Also, in past years, the location where lime was added to water was changed, and an additional place to put alum into the water treatment process was added. It all helped a great deal, she added.

More than 10.5 million Ohioans are served daily by more than 5,800 public drinking water systems. Making sure public drinking water is safe is among Ohio EPA’s most important responsibilities, Ms. Oros said.

Thus, Gov. Bob Taft designated May 6-12 as Drinking Water Week in Ohio. The purpose of this week is to inform citizens about safe drinking water practices in Ohio and provide tips on water conservation and safety.

For more information about Ohio’s drinking water regulations, call Ohio EPA’s Division of Drinking and Ground Waters, (614) 644-2752, or Public Interest Center, (614) 644-2160. Information also is available on Ohio EPA’s Web page at http://www.epa.state.oh.us/ddagw/ddagwmain.html