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USDA/AWWA Workshop “Optimizing Performance & Accessing Funding to Improve Small Systems”….REGISTER NOW!!! Cranberry, PA on June 13 at 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

USDA/AWWA Workshop “Optimizing Performance & Accessing Funding to Improve Small Systems”….REGISTER NOW!!!

June 13 at 8:30 am – 3:00 pm



USDA/AWWA Workshop “Optimizing Performance & Accessing Funding to Improve Small Systems”

Goal: To equip small systems with programs to self-assess and optimize operations, identify opportunities for improvement and funding; including RD Apply.

Approved for 5.5 PA DEP Contact Hours (Water)


Date and Time: Thursday, June 13, 2019; Registration: 8:00 a.m. Course: 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Location:        Cranberry Township Municipal Center-Council Chambers

Address:           2525 Rochester Rd., Cranberry, PA 16066

Workshop Information: Partnership Program for Small Systems

Sponsored by AWWA, USDA, and Partnership

(AWWA applying for up to 6.5 Water Contact Hours)

“How to Identify Improvements AND Find the Money to Make Them”

8:30AM           Registration
8:45AM           Welcomes and introductions – trainers and participants

            Overview and purpose of the training – understanding collaboration between Partnership, USDA, and small system managers and operators

            Introduction to the Partnership for Small Systems

  • Background on the program – origin, purpose, and accomplishments
  • Partnership basics – four phases of membership and what each phase entails
  • Understanding the importance and value of “self-assessment” and what it means at a practical level, including the core areas of assessment, the minimum data requirements, and both the pace and the philosophy behind participation

            Introduction to USDA Loan Program for Small Communities

  • Eligibility and qualifications – targeted communities
  • Loan application process and discussion on “loan eligible” projects
  • Link to the Partnership – identify of best opportunity to improve

            Exercise: How to Complete the “Preliminary Assessment” for Small Systems

  • Facilitators lead discussion regarding completion of assessment prior to workshop
  • Facilitators conduct a verbal inventory of demographics in the room: size, type of ownership, source, primary roles – and chart the results for everyone to see
  • All participants complete entire assessment on their own (with multiple people from same system working as a team) – using the provided worksheet
  • Facilitators check progress and make sure everyone is done with self-assessment
  • Each system identifies its top three issues overall – using the provided worksheet
  • Each system reports out to the whole group on its top three
  • Facilitators reorganize room into groups according core assessment areas: General Mgt./Admin; Financial Management; Asset Management; Source Protection/Production; Distribution System.

“How to Identify Improvements AND Find the Money to Make Them”

            Exercise:  Identification of Loan Eligible Projects

  • Using results of self-assessment, each of the five groups will identify 1 or 2 possible topics that might qualify for a loan.
  • Participants will complete worksheet that outlines topic, issues, and challenges to overcome; preliminary approach to solution; resources needed for success; timeframe for completion
  • Facilitators will rove and help.
  • Groups will report findings and ideas to the whole group for demonstration and discussion

Demonstration and Exercise:  How project ideas can be translated into a loan application.

  • How to get authorized to apply for funding with sign up on eAuth
  • How to use RD Apply
  • Individuals will (voluntarily) sign up for eAuth and groups will watch
  • Groups will “practice” completing loan application.

            What is next after today’s training?

  • Technical Assistance to small systems
  • Loan applications
  • Participation in Partnership for Small Systems

            Summary and Feedback on the Training   

            End of Workshop

OPTIONAL INFORMATION SESSION (like a job fair or expo with stations/tables):


(1) How to do eAuth and RD Apply;

(2) Technical Assistance for this program;

(3) Partnership for Small Systems; and

(4) Resources available from state agencies and professional organizations (AWWA).


            3:00PM   Adjourn

The Partnership for Small Systems has been tailor-made to fit the realities and needs of small drinking water systems that typically serve less than 10,000 people, with a special emphasis on those systems serving even smaller populations of 2,500 people and fewer.

  • PA-AWWA Recognizes Our Gold Sponsors

    Partnership for Safe Water


  • Public Notification Providers

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