RED CLIFF, Colorado - The town of Red Cliff will again operate its drinking water and wastewater facilities beginning May 11. The transition marks an end to an agreement that has been in place for nearly five years. The Eagle River Water and Sanitation District has been Red Cliff's contract operator since August 2007, after town officials asked the district to operate, maintain and manage the systems.
According to a release from the district, Red Cliff and the district mutually decided in mid-April to end the operations agreement and arranged for the contract to expire May 12. Red Cliff's former and current Board of Trustees supported the decision.
"In 2007, the district brought industry expertise and financial assistance to improve Red Cliff's drinking water facility and treatment processes," district director of operations Todd Fessenden said. "We helped bring the new wastewater treatment plant to fruition and upgraded other system components. We agree with Red Cliff that now is a good time to transition to a new operator to run the town's systems."
The district provided technical expertise and support to Red Cliff while the town successfully secured funding for a new wastewater treatment plant, which was subsequently built and put into operation in October 2010. Some of the funding Red Cliff secured required upgrades to the town water distribution system, including installation of water meters at every residence and business in town. District staff completed that project between 2007 and 2009 and also coordinated a rehabilitation of Red Cliff's drinking water facility in 2008.
"Red Cliff has made significant improvements," district general manager Linn Brooks said. "The entire downstream community benefited from improved water quality following construction of the new wastewater treatment plant."
Brooks added that Red Cliff has come a long way, noting that former mayor Ramon Montoya and the board of trustees accomplished what many believed impossible in financing and upgrading the town's infrastructure.