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EPA Recognizes Natoma, Kan., Wastewater Treatment Facility for Excellence

Release Date: 11/07/2006
Contact Information: Martin Kessler, (913) 551-7236,

Environmental News

    (Kansas City, Kan., Nov. 7, 2006) – Natoma, Kan., will receive a national excellence award for its wastewater treatment plant Wednesday, Nov. 15. EPA Region 7 will present the award during a 1 p.m. ceremony at the Natoma Community Center, 704 N. Second St.

    Natoma will be honored as a second place winner of EPA’s 2006 National Clean Water Act Recognition Award for demonstrated outstanding operations and maintenance practices in the Most Improved Plant category.

    Mayor Wendella Axelson will serve as host of the ceremony. Art Spratlin, director of the Water, Wetlands, and Pesticides Division in EPA Region 7, will present the award and give brief remarks. Comments from the plant operator, trainers, and state representatives will follow, with a reception at the end.

    The Natoma wastewater treatment facility, a three-cell lagoon system, received technical assistance from Fort Scott Community College through a grant to the Kansas Department of Health & Environment. Trainer Gerry Grant, with the college, teamed up with the plant’s previous operator, Kenny Lyle.

    Thanks to the efforts of Grant and Lyle, the city was able to save money on capital improvements. Lyle repaired all of the plant’s equipment and implemented a preventative maintenance plan. He also made a money-saving aeration device.

    The city’s wastewater permit can be reissued without a compliance schedule for infrastructure improvements, since those improvements will not be needed.

    Natoma was one of 27 first and second place national winners for outstanding water quality achievements in five categories: operations and maintenance, biosolids management, pre-treatment, storm-water management, and combined sewer overflow control programs.

    EPA announced the 2006 national winners of the Clean Water Act Recognition Awards during the Water Environment Federation Conference in Dallas Oct. 23. This is the 21st year of the awards program.

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