TRAINING AND ONSITE ASSISTANCE
Funded by the National Rural Water Association through the Environmental Protection Agency. LRWA has one Training Specialist covering the state. This program provides technical assistance to both community and non-community water systems throughout the state. The training sessions are geared to keep systems updated on Safe Drinking Water Act rules and regulations. The training hours received are used to comply with state re-certification requirements.
Funded by National Rural Water Association through USDA-Rural Development. LRWA provides on-site technical assistance throughout the state of Louisiana with three wastewater technicians. Technical assistance provided includes treatment plant operations, maintenance, finance, management, regulatory requirements, health concerns and operator certifications. The wastewater technician provide training sessions throughout the state of Louisiana on a small scale. This small scale training enables them to have more of a one-on-one with the operators, managers, etc.
WATER CIRCUIT RIDER
Funded by National Rural Water Association through USDA-Rural Development. LRWA has three Water Circuit Riders covering the state providing technical assistance to water system personnel on the daily operations of their system. These services include on-site visits and information on Safe Drinking Water Act rules and regulations, water quality analysis, disinfection and chemical feed, treatment processes, distribution maintenance, line and valve locations, pump and motor maintenance and rate structures.
More CR Services
USDA SOURCE WATER PROTECTION
This program is designed to work with water systems to increase public awareness in regards to protecting our drinking water sources; creating a local team and working in a step program, which has been designed to simplify the development of local water protection programs. The five-step program includes:
- form a community planning team;
- identify the land area to be protected;
- identify land uses and possible sources of pollution in identified areas;
- implement ways to prevent drinking water contamination; and
- develop an alternate way to supply water if the public well becomes contaminated.
Another positive effect on the protection of water sources is education. By making future generations aware of the many possible sources of contamination and the importance of protecting our water for the future goes a long way in protection efforts.
It takes more than 380,000 highly skilled water and wastewater personnel to ensure the public supply of safe drinking water and to protect our lakes, streams and groundwater. Advancements in water treatment and supply technology have increased the skills and training required of this workforce. Water professionals are ultimately responsible for meeting stringent regulatory standards, replacing aging infrastructure, recruiting and training new operations specialists, and responding to and recovering from disasters.
In addition to increasing professional demands, utilities will soon be forced to replace many of their most experienced employees. Over the next decade, the water sector is expected to lose between 30 and 50 percent of the workforce to retirement. Many of these employees have worked at the same utility for the majority of their careers, and they will depart with decades of valuable institutional knowledge.
The Apprenticeship Program is tailored to transfer a wealth of experience and knowledge from industry experts to the next generation of system operation specialists. Individuals accepted into the program will receive both on-the-job training and technical instruction while being employed by sponsoring utility systems.
LRWA will train system operations specialists through all phases of the industry. Related instruction will cover safety, professional requirements, operations and maintenance, operator mathematics, security and emergency response, laws and regulations, utility management and construction projects. Systems will provide hands-on experience with tools, equipment and workplace safety, vehicles and heavy equipment, system operations and maintenance, quality control and logistics, reports and supervision. Mindy Credeur serves at the Apprenticeship Coordinator for LRWA.
ENERGY EFFICIENCY TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
The primary goal of the Energy Efficiency Technical Assistance Program is to: assist rural and small community water and wastewater utility systems in evaluating their energy needs, consumption and costs; recommending measures to reduce energy consumption; and identifying potential funding sources for improvements.
The technician for this program conducts on-site energy assessments for rural and small community water and wastewater utility systems and makes recommendations to those systems on how to retrofit the equipment and operate the system in the most energy efficient manner.
RURAL WATER BOARD DEVELOPMENT TRAINING
This training will focus specifically on providing training to governing officials and utility managers of small rural water and wastewater systems. This training will emphasize topics that will enhance knowledge of basic governing skills and responsibilities. This training will also offer guidance in specific areas such as hiring and managing managers, ensuring adequate financing and accountability and board self-evaluation. It will also work with board members and upper management in expanding their system’s financial, managerial and technical capacity through the use of self-assessment. Training in areas of budgeting, policy-making, customer relations, and board member’s legal obligations will assist each system with their capacity development process.
RURAL WATER ENERGY CONSERVATION PROGRAM
This program offers specialized on-site training and technical assistance to small water and/or wastewater system personnel throughout Louisiana. It is designed to reduce energy consumption, water loss and increase the efficiency of operation for water and wastewater systems by providing the following tests to determine sources of energy loss within a system:
- Water Leak Detection (aid in detecting water loss during normal operations and emergency basis as needed)
- Water Meter Bench Test (test customer’s meters for accuracy)
- Infiltration (smoke) Test (forces non-toxic smoke through sewer lines to identify sources of run-off/rain water entering the sewer system)
- Sewer Video Camera (inspect the inside of sewer lines for problems)
- Rate Analysis/Studies (assist systems in conducting rate studies and submitting to proper agencies for review and approval)
To REQUEST a survey please do the following:
- Click to download and complete a REQUEST Form.
- Click to download and complete the necessary FIGURES Form.
- Click to download and complete a LIABILITY Form.
- Complete all pages and return to the LRWA office by fax (337-738-5620) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
HOMEOWNER SEWAGE MAINTENANCE EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM
This program provides information to homeowners on the importance of inspecting and maintaining their individual home sewage treatment system. Homeowners will be instructed on how their system works, how to conduct a thorough inspection, and how to maintain their systems through repairs, upgrades, and pump-outs as needed.
During each visit, the inspector discussed operation and maintenance practices, addressed homeowner’s questions and provided a visual inspection of the system. When the homeowner was not present, the field inspector would leave an educational/informational brochure explaining the purpose of their visit and offered homeowner a sewer system inspection at no cost.
NATURAL GAS PROGRAM
In 2022, Louisiana Rural Water Association expanded to provide service to natural gas systems across the state. Through funding from the Louisiana Municipal Natural Gas Authority, LRWA provides quality technical assistance to natural gas distribution system personnel on operation, maintenance, billing, accounting, management, regulatory requirements, health concerns, conservation issues and/or issues relevant to natural gas distribution systems. In addition, the LRWA provides on-site advice on gas usage problems, gas leak detection, establishing sound management, operation procedures, advising new systems on construction, and meeting state and federal pipeline safety. These services are provided by one full-time natural gas-certified technician who can train and certify all applicable persons in the field of natural gas, distribution, and pipeline safety.
Additional services provided under this program include:
Reporting and documenting safety-related conditions.
- Reporting incidents.
- Investigating failures.
- Investigating gas-related accidents.
- Holding safety-related meetings.
- Preparing the annual gas report.
- Establishing a public relations program to instruct the public and persons engaged in excavating-related activities.
- Recognizing a gas emergency.
- Instructing the public on how to recognize gas odors using scratch and sniff pads.
VERY SMALL WATER SYSTEM TRAINING
LRWA offers the Very Small Water System (VSWS) Training Program to all water and wastewater systems throughout the state of Louisiana. LRWA provides three two-day training sessions located throughout the state of Louisiana, annually. The VSWS Program targets the small systems (systems under 500 pop., mobile home parks, subdivisions, etc.). The training is done by the LRWA staff in conjunction with LDH and other sources available through LRWA.
LRWA works with coalitions to provide data and disseminate rules and regulations to evaluate effectiveness and cost to rural water systems. Attend legislative sessions in Baton Rouge and Washington, DC, to inform our congressional members of problems in Louisiana.
LRWA takes pride in the Training and Technical Assistance that we offer throughout the year from one end of Louisiana to the other. The training sessions are instructed by individuals with a wide variety of expertise in water and wastewater related issues, as well as LA Department of Health & Hospitals, Office of Public Health personnel to keep attendees abreast of current and changing State Regulations. LRWA offers a wide variety of training sessions such as Environmental Protection Agency, LA Compliance Initiative, Very Small Water System, Board/Council Member, Wastewater, Safe Drinking Water “The Basics” as well as our Annual Conference which includes Certification Training and Technical Training for office personnel.
LRWA provides training for 32 or 40 hours of water and wastewater certification for levels 1 and 2 at the Wayne Fontenot Training Center located at our office in Kinder. This facility comfortably seats 48 attendees by providing educational instructions to assist them with the certification exam and training to meet all state and federal regulations by learning the Rules and Regulations of the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Clean Water Act.
The LRWA’s specialized training sessions provide water and wastewater systems’ personnel with an opportunity to solve problems by sharing ideas with state and federal agencies, engineers, contractors, manufacturers, and other water and wastewater system personnel. Training sessions cover a broad spectrum of needs ranging from water treatment, state and federal water and wastewater regulations, to financial management practices, and operator certification. This training allows water professionals to upgrade their skills, improve the quality of their utilities’ service, and protect their community’s health.
LRWA provides one or two day training sessions to keep systems updated on Safe Drinking Water Act Rules and Regulations, Water Conservation, Operation & Maintenance, Board/Council Members Training, and Training for Secretaries, Clerks, Office Managers, etc. The training hours you receive at these training sessions can be used to comply with state re-certification requirements.
Below is a list of some topics that are covered during these training sessions and conferences.
- Introduction to Safe Drinking Water Program
- Enforcement, How to Maintain Compliance
- Bacteriological Sampling
- Operator Certification Program
- Groundwater Protection Program
- Operating a water system…Getting Certified
- Sewer Lift Stations
- Troubleshooting, Control Transformers, Single Phase
- Smoke Testing and TV Inspections
- Hydrant Operations
- Disinfection Challenges and Chlorine Safety
- Troubleshooting Filters
- Water Leak Detection
- Wastewater Plant Operations
- Electrical Equipment
- Everything You Need to Know About Chlorinators
- Proper Security for your Water System
LRWA provides an Annual Conference to over 1,500 water and wastewater professionals, as well as mayors, board members, clerks, and decision makers. This conference allows these professionals to receive up to 32 hours of re-certification credits. This conference has had over 150 exhibitors displaying their state of the art products, which is important to the water and wastewater industry. Our annual conference puts water and wastewater personnel in touch with vendor’s products while obtaining valuable training.
LaWARN (Louisiana Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network): Following the impacts of Hurricane Katrina and then Hurricane Rita, it became apparent that even with the extraordinary efforts of utilities, water associations, and state regulatory agencies, the demand for resources and knowing where those resources were available overwhelmed the ability to effectively coordinate the initial response. Realizing that utilities needed a different approach, leaders in the water community and state agencies have joined together to create the Louisiana Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network or LaWARN. Our mission is to support and promote statewide emergency preparedness, disaster response, and mutual assistance matters for public and private water and wastewater utilities. The LaWARN program provides its member utilities with a LaWARN Mutual Assistance Agreement (complete & return to LRWA)
- A standard omnibus mutual assistance agreement and process for sharing emergency resources among members statewide.
- A mutual assistance program consistent with other statewide mutual aid programs.
- The resources to respond and recover more quickly from a disaster.
- A forum for developing and maintaining emergency contacts and relationships.
- New ideas from lessons learned in disasters.
- The Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association and the Louisiana Association of Chiefs of Police, with the support of the LA State Police, have adopted a Joint SO (JSOP) for Coordinated Statewide Reentry, and that the ER-ITN data system has been adopted to implement the JSOP. The JSOP, and the ER-ITN that implements it, are intended to help solve reentry problems after a natural disaster. Visit the LA State Police and LA Sheriff’s Association websites for more information regarding the Joint SOP (JSOP).
- LA State Police: www.lsp.org
- LA Sheriff’s Association: www.lsa.org
- LaWARN Brochure
- LaWARN Application (complete and return to LRWA)
- NRWA & LRWA Emergency Response Template (MS Word format)
- EPA Emergency Response Plan Guidance (PDF format)
If you want LRWA to conduct a Rate Study on your system please click the box on the right and complete the PDF Rate Study Request form, then email to the LRWA office at email@example.com.
DO NOT send any financial information at this time.
Please ensure everyone involved in the Rate Study reads the instructions and procedures (2nd box to the right) needed to conduct a rate study to understand what is necessary for the LRWA staff to conduct the study for the system
If you are not requesting or awarded Water Sector Funding your rate study will be assigned in the order it arrives at our office. Please understand we have a waiting list and will get to them as soon as our staff is available.
The technician assigned to your rate study will contact you to request all the financial information needed.
NOTE regarding Water Sector Funding Systems:
LRWA has been approved to conduct Rate Studies for systems requesting Water Sector Funding. You can complete the form on the right and send it to our office at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Office of Community Development (OCD) will assign LRWA rate studies for particular systems. LRWA can only conduct Water Sector Funding Rate Studies once OCD assigns them to us.