SACWSD Board of Directors Approves Centralized Treatment for Water Hardness


The District’s Mission Statement states that we are dedicated to providing affordable, sustainable
water resources including quality water, wastewater and related services to the customers of the
District, in a manner that promotes public health, safety and quality of life. Over the last year,
the District has utilized multiple methods to seek community input regarding the quality of our
drinking water. This included a thorough district-wide statistically valid survey, the formation of
a community-based advisory committee to study the issue, and public meetings. These processes
made it clear that the vast majority of our customers do not feel the water they are being served
is high enough quality. While our water is safe and healthy to drink, it is “hard,” containing very
high levels of calcium. Hard water has a mineral taste and causes excessive wear on plumbing and
appliances. Through this public process, it became clear to the Board that action needed to be taken
to rectify this situation.
To that end, the Board of Directors voted on December 13 to implement a solution to improve the
quality of our water by reducing the hardness. The decision was to move forward with a centralized
pellet softening treatment system, which will reduce the calcium hardness and scale forming
characteristics of the District’s water. The project will begin immediately and is expected to take
roughly 3 years to complete. The expected cost of this project to the average residential customer
is likely to be in the range of $10-12 per month. This cost will be phased in over the next 3 years as
the project progresses.
We want to thank many people who invested time and effort in helping come to this decision
including the residents of the city who were willing to give their opinions and feedback. We
especially want to thank the Hardness Advisory Committee (HAC) for their help in arriving at this
solution. A volunteer group of citizens and business owners from all parts of the city, the HAC
met numerous times and looked at multiple possible solutions. The options considered include a
rebate program, five different centralized treatment systems, and an option to do nothing. After
a thoughtful deliberation process, the HAC recommended that the District implement a pellet
softening centralized treatment system to address the hardness of the District’s water. The Board
unanimously accepted their recommendation. The District will now be moving forward with this
solution and hopes to have the project completed by the end of 2020.
If you have further questions, you are encouraged to email the District at
pelletsoftening@sacwsd.org.