Blog Posts Tagged ‘public-works’

Goodyear Water Project Wins National Award

Water professionals from all over the country were on hand Sept. 12 when the city of Goodyear’s Vadose Well Injection Project was selected as the 2017 Project of the Year Award by the national Water Reuse Association.

The project consists of wells that take treated water from the city’s reclamation facility and directly pump it into the ground. This allows the city to ‘bank’ water for use during times of need.

The award comes with the water industry’s acknowledgment of the significant contributions the city of Goodyear continues to make to advance water reuse. Another award-winning city water reuse program is the ‘Brine Wetland Feasibility Project’ which takes otherwise unusable water and proved it can help nourish native vegetation, therefore creating natural wetlands.

“We know that ensuring a sustainable and reliable supply of water for the city’s future growth is essential,” said Mark Holmes, water resources manager for the city of Goodyear. “That’s why we continuously focus on how to maximize the water we have. Water reuse is a huge part of our efforts, along with conservation and partnerships.”

The city of Goodyear, ranked as the fourteenth fastest growing city in 2015 by the U.S. Census Bureau, recently announced a historic agreement with Salt River Project that, for the first time, will bring surface water to the far West Valley further expanding and diversifying the city’s water portfolio. For more information about the city’s water initiatives, visit

WateReuse is an organization dedicated to educating and advocating for water reuse. Members include water utilities, businesses, government agencies and not-for-profit organizations dedicated to recycling water to ensure communities have a safe, reliable and cost-effective supply of water. More information is available at

Josh Wolfgramm

Heavy Equipment Operator
City of Mesa

Josh Wolfgramm

Josh Wolfgramm has worked for the City of Mesa Transportation Department for 11 years.  He started as a street maintenance worker and has worked himself up to heavy equipment operator on the slurry crew.  A slurry seal is a process where a mat of asphalt emulsion, water, and aggregate is applied to the street to create a new surface.  A slurry seal is used to extend the life of the existing pavement when it starts to show signs of deterioration.  On the slurry crew, Josh operates a heavy piece of equipment called a sand conveyor but is nicknamed a “salad shooter.”  Josh also gets called on to help with many other different tasks, like cleaning up trees after a storm.  His supervisor describes Josh as clever, helpful, and eager – a perfect combination of traits when you are on a transportation field crew and get called on to do many things!


Josh is unique in that he works with and operates heavy equipment during the day, but away from work he is a Polynesian dancer.  Yes, a dancer!  He performs every weekend with a group called the Royal Islanders for special events all around the Valley.  The dance that Josh performs is part of the grand finale and is called the Samoan Fire Knife dance.  During this dance he twirls a heavy baton-like knife that is on fire on both ends.  Josh learned Polynesian dance as a young boy growing up in New Zealand.


Josh moved to the United States 15 years ago after he saw a stunningly beautiful woman performing a Polynesian dance while he was visiting.  It was love at first sight and Josh moved to the US to marry the beautiful dancer, whose name is Sadie.  Together Josh and Sadie have four sons who range in age from five to 12.  The boys are following in their parent’s footsteps and perform Polynesian dance, too.


Aside from working full-time, dancing on the weekends, and attending his sons’ sporting events, Josh is taking college courses, as well.  Somehow he finds time to do it all!

City of Sierra Vista celebrates the completion of community path project

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 The city of Sierra Vista celebrated the completion of the Cracchiolo Family Path to Higher Education at a ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday,  alongside its partner organizations that helped make the project happen.

The path connects Cochise College, University of Arizona-Sierra Vista and Buena High School with a paved, safe route between the campuses. It adds to the City’s 29-mile network of multi-use paths within Sierra Vista , to include some county connections.

Aside from the college, the University of Arizona-Sierra Vista, the Sierra Vista Unified School District and the University South Foundation also facilitated the project by offering the use of some of its land. The federal transportation enhancement grant dollars that funded over 90 percent of this project, and many other paths in Sierra Vista, have dried up but the city is exploring various methods to continue making progress on its network of popular multi-use paths moving forward.

The path is named after a family that has been dedicated to the betterment of education in Sierra Vista for decades.

“Community Begins Here” – 2015 National Public Works Week


You may not always realize it, but your city or town’s public works department is at work all day to keep your life running smoothly. From making sure your recycling is picked up at your curb and the streets are paved for your commute into work; to ensuring that water is always clean when coming out of the tap and street lights are blinking correctly for a safe drive home, a city’s public works department is responsible for many of our day-to-day activities. 

May 17-23 is Public Works Week! This annual events celebrates public works professionals of our Arizona cities and towns who work tirelessly. The National Public Works Week is a celebration of the tens of thousands of men and women in North America who provide and maintain the infrastructure and services collectively known as public works. 

Communities across Arizona are taking time to recognize individuals who dedicate services to cities and towns, which include road construction, cleaning and maintenance services, sanitation and recycling, fleet services, and various other community provisions.

The City of Glendale and the City of Surprise both issued proclamations at their recent council meetings to announce their celebration of National Public Works Week and thank those members of their public works departments for their dedication.

NPWW proclamation 5.12.15

City of Glendale issuing a proclamation celebrating National Public Works Week and recognizing those individuals who serve on their public works department 


AZ Cities @ Work Spotlight: Jack Young, Gilbert’s Longest-Standing Employee

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Arizona’s cities and towns are successful because of the wonderful people who work  to make them so great. The Town of Gilbert is no exception.

Jack Young is the longest-standing employee in the history of the Town of Gilbert. He recently retired after serving the community for more than 39 years. In his time with the town, he served as a police officer, code compliance inspector, building inspector and the wastewater quality inspector.

Jack started with the Gilbert Police Department in 1976 as an officer, which he says to this day was his favorite assignment. He worked his way up the ranks and eventually became a commander in 1998. Jack was even named as the Acting Police Chief for six months in-between a retiring and new police chief.


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After 25 years with the Gilbert Police Department, Jack retired and quickly transitioned into his new role as Gilbert’s Code Compliance Inspector; a position he held for three years. He later transitioned to work as a Building Inspector and after four years ventured on to Gilbert’s Public Works Department as the Wastewater Quality Inspector.

Jack is a prime example of Gilbert’s Vision to provide “Best in Class” service. He has won several awards during his time at the town including Police Officer of the Year (1977), Town Employee of the Year (1998), and the Town’s Pioneer Award for his work on Gilbert’s first Continuous Quality Improvements (CQI) Steering Committee.

Jack is one of many individuals who help Arizona cities & towns work each and every day. Congratulations, Jack!


Eloy Receives WIFA 2014 Drinking Water Project of the Year Award


The Water Infrastructure Finance Authority of Arizona (WIFA) selected the City of Eloy to receive WIFA’s 2014 Drinking Water Project of the Year award. WIFA presented the award at a special presentation during the City of Eloy Council Meeting on Monday night.

The 2014 Drinking Water Project of the Year was for the Houser/Toltec Waterline Improvement Project, a $2 million infrastructure project to address inadequate water distribution infrastructure in the western portion of Eloy. The project included upgrades to the existing booster station and replacement of undersized water mains.

“Through water management planning and investments in water infrastructure improvements like this, the City of Eloy is able to provide a reliable water supply to its residents and the businesses within their community,” said WIFA Board Chairman Henry Darwin, who is also Director of the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality.

The project was selected for an award based on advances the City of Eloy made to ensure system reliability, their excellent project management and commitment to protecting public health in Arizona through water infrastructure improvement.

“The City of Eloy’s staff did an excellent job managing this project, even through the transition of Public Works Directors,” said WIFA Executive Director, Sandy Sutton. “We’re very pleased to acknowledge their achievements and hard work with this award.”

WIFA is a state agency dedicated to protecting public health and promoting environmental quality through financial assistance for water and wastewater infrastructure. WIFA offers funding for drinking water, wastewater and stormwater projects designed to ensure safe, reliable drinking water and proper wastewater treatment. Over the last 25 years, WIFA has invested over $2 billion in Arizona’s communities.

13th Annual Arizona Cities & Towns Week!

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When you woke up this morning, you probably took a shower, set out your recycling bin or drove to work on a safely paved street with working stop lights. Maybe this afternoon you’ll hit up a town park to enjoy this beautiful weather with your kids or check out a book at the city library. This evening, you can sleep assured knowing that police, fire and safety services would be there if you needed them.

Cities and towns are always working, from sun up to sun down, to ensure safety, protection, well-being, convenience and enrichment for all citizens to live, work and play. To celebrate the great things cities and towns do, Arizona will be celebrating its 13th Annual Cities and Towns Week, October 19 – 25!

Arizona Cities and Towns Week is set aside each year to provide citizens with important information about the services and programs provided by their city/town, and to introduce the employees that deliver them.

Arizona has 91 cities and towns, ranging from the large city of Phoenix with a population of 1.4 million, to the small town of Winkelman at 353 residents. 79 percent of Arizona’s residents reside in a city or town and these municipalities are vitally important to Arizona’s economy. In fact, 83 percent of Arizona’s workforce lives in a city or town and 93 percent of the state’s sales tax proceeds are produced within a municipality.

Many of Arizona’s cities and towns are celebrating this week through a variety of community events, proclamations and outreach to residents. Contact your local city or town to find out how you can celebrate with them!

For more information on Arizona Cities & Towns Week and a toolkit with ideas for participation, click here.