Wastewater Collection System of the Year Award

 2018 Large System: Charlotte Water

 2018 Medium System: Greenville Utilities Commission

2018 Overall Winner: Town of Smithfield 
The North Carolina Wastewater Collection and Water Distribution Systems Committee supports, educates and represents the membership of the North Carolina Water Environment Association, and the North Carolina Section of the AWWA, regarding issues dealing with the operation, maintenance, planning and management of wastewater collection and water distribution systems.


The mission of the North Carolina Collection System of The Year Award is to identify and recognize the municipality that protects the public health and the natural beauty of the environment through pro-active practices of management, operations and maintenance beyond what is required of its NC DENR collection system permit.


To assist in these efforts, the committee shall annually recognize up to four wastewater collection systems in our state based on the size of their collection system.

  • Large Sized Collection Systems (Greater than 750 miles of collection system)
  • Medium Sized Collection Systems (Greater than 251 miles and up to 750 miles of collection system)
  • Small Sized Collection Systems (250 miles of collection system or smaller)

Recipients of the award will have demonstrated that it performs quality collection system maintenance procedures through the efficient use of labor, materials, equipment, and innovative methods to keep its collection system in good working condition to minimize health hazards and property damage that occur due to sanitary sewer over flows during both wet weather and dry weather conditions.


The award will honor the collection system personnel that serve their community with a high level of professionalism and diligent work in the operation and maintenance of their wastewater collection system facilities. The recipient’s staff make the most of their available resources, no matter how great or small. Awards will be given to one collection system in each of the four sizes of systems listed above.


Participation by individual collection systems is strictly voluntary. Participants shall submit the standard application form and supply the required information to be considered for the award by the stated deadline.


The award committee will consist of at least four (but no more than eight) active members of the North Carolina Wastewater Collection and Water Distribution Systems Committee.   The Committee’s Chairperson will select the award committee members and also serve as the award committee’s chair.


The award committee will review the applications, rank each collection system against the other applicants, and shortlist up to the three lowest ranked systems in each collection system size category. Interviews may be conducted by members of the award committee in order to review the data submitted and collection additional information as needed to determine the final winners. The award committee is committed to objectively rate each collection system during the site visit.


The Collection System of Year will be issued a plaque for each size category and will be presented at the Association’s Annual Conference at an appropriate time and place in the program. Shortlisted collection systems will be recognized at the Annual Conference as well.


The rankings of applicants will be made on data supplied by each applicant according to the four general categories and 25 specific types of data.


Listed below is a general description of the four categories and the types of data to be supplied by each applicant. The award application contains a detailed listing of the data to be supplied by each applicant:

  • Wastewater Collection System Data: Number of miles of pipe in collection system, number of pump stations, number and types of SSOs last year, amount of rainfall, etc.
  • Wastewater Collection System Management Activities: Listing of FOG , flow monitoring, capacity certification programs, and CIP designation for system reinvestment.
  • Annual Wastewater Collection System Operations and Maintenance Activities: Miles of sewer cleaned & CCTV’d; root removal; smoke testing; number of cave-ins & point repairs; number of manholes inspected
  • Annual Wastewater Collection System Rehabilitation & Replacement Activities: Miles of sewer rehabilitated and replaced; number of manholes rehabilitated and replace; rehabilitation & replacement expenditures

Under this ranking system, a perfect score (highest ranking in all 25 of the above sub-categories) would equal 25 if a system had the #1 ranking on all 25 items of data submitted.


There are seven (7) questions also included that will be used as bonus points in order to break any ties in ranking to determine the final winners.


Past Recipients

Large System

2017 Charlotte Water

2016 Charlotte Water

2015 Fayetteville Public Works Commission

2014 Charlotte Mecklenburg Utility Department
2013 Charlotte Mecklenburg Utility Department
2012 MSD Buncombe County
2011 City of Concord

Medium System

2017 Town of Mooresville 

2016 Town of Mooresville

2015 Brunswick County 

2014 City of Concord

2013 Orange Water & Sewer Authority
2012 Orange Water & Sewer Authority
2011  Orange Water & Sewer Authority

Small System

2017 Town of Smithfield

2016 Town of Hillsborough

2015 City of Conover 

2013 Town of Mooresville

Micro System (100 miles or less)

2014 Durham County
2013 Durham County

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