By Liz Verley, Staff Writer
Besides being the boyhood home of Charles A. Lindbergh, Little Falls can now claim the title of having the best tasting water in the state.
The city’s sample of water came out on top of 23 entries tested by the Minnesota Rural Water Association (MRWA).
The award was presented during the MRWA Technical Conference recently held in St. Cloud.
Accepting the award for the city was Greg McGillis,, water/wastewater superintendent.
McGillis attributed a portion of the city’s success with providing excellent-tasting water to its water users of the city’s drinking water treatment facility.
He said, “The city was in need of a new treatment system in the early 1970s. The existing City Council placed high value on ensuring a high-quality product and opted for a more expensive treatment system they felt would yield a better product for their residents.”
A lime softening water treatment system with anthracite and sand filtration was constructed in 1972 and has been serving the city ever since.
McGillis said, “The system has weathered many changes and has been able to continue to keep the city in compliance with all Safe Drinking Water Act standards over the past 40 years. While many city council members and city leaders have come and gone since the construction of the water treatment plant, the Little Falls City Council to this day continues its unwavering commitment and support so that the facility has the tools needed to provide clean, potable, great tasting water to its residents.”
Of receiving the award, McGillis said, “The City Council and public works director have always been very proud and protective of the water they provide our residents. It is one thing to feel that way yourself, but it is always great to know that others agree with you.”
While McGillis said the technology of the water treatment plant accounts for some of the city’s success in delivering such a good product, he gave the majority of the credit to the assistant water superintendent Dwayne Heinen and the hard-working dedicated staff.
“The treatment process itself wouldn’t matter if it wasn’t for the hard work and personal commitment that the staff has to the production of high quality water. They are all very conscientious and take ownership in the day-to-day operations of the facility. I can not give enough credit to the staff,” McGillis said.
Heinen said, “It’s a privilege to be associated with a city that is willing to invest in a high quality water treatment process. An award like this is the product of when the City Council, the administration and operations all work together to provide the best water possible for the citizens of Little Falls.”
The MRWA Board of Directors and staff congratulated the city for continuing excellence in the water treatment field and treating the citizens of Little Falls to the best tasting water in Minnesota.
As winner of the state-wide contest, the city will have the honor of providing the state of Minnesota’s entry in the National Rural Water Taste Test held in February 2013.