Walden was retained by BCS Management (BCS) to assist with the review and assessment of the water and wastewater facilities serving four regional districts and the community of Mount Etna located in Huntington County. The County Commissioners sought an assessment that could determine if regionalization and consolidating the facilities was a viable option. The review and assessment helped to identify and confirm the ability of each of the systems to grow and expand, consider cooperative consolidations or other efficiencies and service offerings.

Walden completed a preliminary review of available information, conducted site visits to gather more data, held interviews at the facilities, and collected and reviewed other available information regarding each facility, its performance and regulatory standing with local, state and federal agencies. Walden prepared detailed asset listings and descriptions, tables, photograph logs, assessments and current performance levels of the facilities in order to provide a calculated recommendation.

Walden did not find any significant failures or indications of environmental or regulatory liabilities in each of the reviewed systems.  Although each of the systems is facing certain specific challenges not uncommon for the utility industry, each system has capacity for the consideration of growth, environmental stewardship or public health improvements.  In addition, there are no apparent reasons to discontinue the consideration of consolidations, regionalization, shared services and/or asset agreements or other cooperative ventures in the best interest of the customers in the community.

This Walden project was featured at the 2018 American Society of Civil Engineer Annual Meeting (Indiana) with the presentation titled “Interlocal Agreements, PPPs, Consolidations and other Regionalization Trends in Water and Wastewater Utility Agencies – Impacts and Considerations for Engineers”.