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Inframark’s Stephane Bouvier: NAWC Launches New Contract Operations Committee

Originally posted at nawc.org.

Water is an essential resource that directly affects our quality of life. That’s why it is crucial that water systems are cared for and managed by professionals with the expertise and resources to keep water service safe and reliable. Contract operators provide unique benefits to a water or wastewater infrastructure owner by helping them operate and maintain their various systems successfully. In doing so, contract operators have a proud record of providing compliant and trust-worthy services to communities all over the nation. That’s why the National Association of Water Companies has launched a new Contract Operations Committee to represent member companies, like mine, who work side-by-side with industries, municipalities and various public entities to ensure the delivery of the very best water service to communities.

I am honored to chair this new Committee, which will serve as a forum for the exchange of ideas and best practices to address pressing water challenges. Together, our companies hope to accomplish a lot both within NAWC and the broader industry. Our Committee will serve as a resource on new market developments and provide a platform for sharing information, data and best practices that inform and highlight the tremendously positive story about the benefits of working with contract operators. We’ll also talk about universally important issues like workforce development and advocate for state and federal policies that ensure contract operations agreements remain a readily available solution for municipalities’ infrastructure needs.

At my company, Inframark, we provide a diverse range of infrastructure solutions for water, wastewater and infrastructure management. We have more than 1,500 employees who work day in and day out to tailor and deliver solutions to meet each of our partners’ needs. For example, for nearly 25 years, Inframark has worked with the town of Carmel, New York to manage, operate and maintain many of the city’s water and wastewater treatment plants. This management and operations agreement, which was just renewed for an additional five years, is representative of the many successful partnerships Inframark and other NAWC member companies have across the country. Indeed, the data shows that communities are overwhelmingly happy with their contract operations agreements, renewing them at a rate of 97% between 2000 and 2015.

With more than 2,000 water and wastewater facilities across the nation operated through public-private partnerships, Contract Operations form an integral part of the water industry today. Furthermore, it brings many benefits to the communities served by these partnerships, including more efficient operations, strict environmental and safety compliance, shared risk liability and guaranteed performance metrics. I am pleased to lead this group, knowing that, as the focus continues on how we can strengthen our nation’s water infrastructure, contract operators will play a crucial role in ensuring that generations to come can enjoy safe and reliable water.

By: Stephane Bouvier, CEO of Inframark and Chair of the NAWC Contract Operations Committee

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