Johnson Utilities transferred its management and operations to EPCOR USA on August 31, and our team has been working quickly to come up to speed on the operations and what needs to be done.
We recognize that the past months have been challenging. We're focused on the road ahead and the critical work that needs to be done to address operational and infrastructure issues and to ensure clean, safe, reliable service. We do not take this responsibility lightly.
First and foremost, EPCOR is committed to being a good neighbor, a community partner, a quality employer and provider of clean drinking water that meets or exceeds all quality standards. For Johnson Utilities customers, our immediate priorities are:
- Ensuring all drinking water meets or exceeds all drinking water standards.
- Putting proper safeguards in place to prevent future sewer overflows.
- Addressing water pressure concerns.
- Ensuring that Johnson Utilities customers get fair and accurate bills.
We have the operational, engineering and customer service expertise to make a difference. Team members from EPCOR's Operations, Engineering, Environmental Compliance, Human Resources, Health & Safety, Customer Service and Public & Government Affairs groups are partnering and collaborating with Johnson Utilities' employees and we appreciate your patience as we tackle the important work ahead.
We're identifying immediate improvements that can be made in the first 3-6 month, as well as planning for longer-term improvements all focusing on safety and customer service issues. Some changes can be made quickly, while long-term infrastructure solutions will take a little longer. We know it's not easy, but we're asking for your patience.
The bottom line is this – we're focused on getting in there and making a difference.
Introducing EPCOR – Community Open House
It's important that you get to know us and learn more about what's being done to improve your service. Please join EPCOR, Supervisor Goodman, Rep. Townsend, Rep. Shope and Rep. Cook for a community meeting:
Thursday, October 11, 2018
6:00 to 7:30 p.m.
Central Arizona College – SanTan Campus
3736 E Bella Vista Road, San Tan Valley, AZ 85143
Engineering review and analysis
Separate from EPCOR's role as Interim Manager, EPCOR is conducting a 60-day Engineering Review and Analysis for the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC). This study, a comprehensive evaluation of the assets and needs of the water and wastewater systems and facilities that provide your service, is on schedule to be provided to the ACC at the end of September. It will be an important step in addressing the issues affecting your service.
Water pressure concerns
Customers are reporting low water pressure at their homes. Rest assured, EPCOR's team is actively looking into this and we're prioritizing calls where water pressure is dipping below 20 psi.
Here's what we're doing
Our engineering team is reviewing the entire system to determine customer usage patterns and system capacity. We've identified several booster stations that aren't properly sized to accommodate water demand, and we're establishing zones to manage pressure. Infrastructure work will be needed to put permanent solutions in place, and that's going to take time.
Here's where we need your help
If your water pressure is low, call customer service at (480) 987-9870. We need as much information as possible – location, the time of the issue, how bad was the pressure. With that information, we can put a pressure logger in place and record the pressure for a week or two so that we can better pinpoint the issue and how to resolve it.
Preventing against sewer overflows
We've identified many of the same concerns that the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) previously did. Our team is evaluating the facilities to determine the best solution for both the short- and long-term, prioritizing safety and customer service concerns.
Sanitary sewer overflows are a critical priority. The engineering evaluation will identify short- and long-term priorities for the system, and our operations team is working on immediate changes that can be made.
For example, Johnson Utilities utilizes 36 different lift stations to move wastewater through pressurized pipelines to different treatment facilities. During a recent lift station overflow, we discovered that the valves controlling the flow of the wastewater were not operating and that there were no air relief valves on the five-mile force main. We temporarily bypassed the system to make those immediate repairs.
Customer service and billing
EPCOR's Director of Customer Operations and our Customer Care specialists are working directly with the Johnson Utilities team to address any billing or service concerns that are received, and we're reviewing processes that are currently in place to determine what improvements should be made.
Your bill for service
EPCOR is Interim Manager, but your bill for service will still come from and is due to Johnson Utilities because it remains a separate legal entity. EPCOR has direct oversight of the utility's finances and will ensure that your bills and payments are processed appropriately.
Contacting us and reporting service issues
Johnson Utilities provides your service, under EPCOR's management and direction. To contact customer service or report a service issue, please call: