Municipal Finance in a Pandemic: How is the Market Responding?

Written by Austin Thompson, Project Director, EFC at UNC Municipal Bonds & COVID-19: What is going on? Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19 in the US, the municipal (“muni”) bond market was strong. Investors looking for a non-taxable rate of return were hungry for municipal bonds, driving interest rates down for borrowers (state and local governments) and pushing more debt …

Communicating with Utility Staff During COVID-19

Written By: Leslie Kimble, Marketing Coordinator, Wichita State University Environmental Finance Center Thanks to the work of water operators, utility staff and water quality regulators across the country, communities in the United States rarely have to worry about their drinking water; a service that is, without a doubt, critical and essential. The reality of this global pandemic is that some …

Becoming a Water Utility Operator: Test-taking Strategies

  Written by Matt Ziegler Are you interested in where our drinking water comes from, or how our cities and towns handle all of the wastewater that is generated by our modern society? Do you care about the health of your community and its future? Are you looking for a career that pays well with the potential for growth? If …

Water as a Service

At a recent conference, we asked utility managers and operators to tell us about their everyday communication challenges. Again and again, we heard that communicating with customers about the value of the service their utility provides was difficult, because too often, customers think about water as a good rather than a service. Customers see water all around them (even falling …

Board Member Responsibilities for Managing a Water Utility

Written by: Leslie Kimble Leslie Kimble is a Program Coordinator at the Wichita State University Environmental Finance Center Elected officials or board members may be members of a city council or county commission, or serve on the Rural Water District board. With a long list of to-dos and policy concerns, how are board members supposed to stay up-to-date and knowledgeable …

Workforce Planning: Recruiting and Retaining Employees for your Water System

Written by: Khris Dodson Khris Dodson is the Associate Director at the Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center Your people are your #1 Asset. Well, maybe your #2 asset behind your actual facility. But, without good people, in time, you will likely not have a good facility either. So, how do you find and keep good people? That’s called Workforce Planning. …

Smart Management for Small Water Systems Program Newsletter | Spring 2015

The Environmental Finance Center Network has published the third issue in a series of bi-monthly newsletters. The Spring 2015 Program Newsletter highlights upcoming workshops and webinars, highlights the story of one small water system who worked with the EFCN, and shares helpful new resources for small water systems.

New Video Series on Financial Topics for Water Utilities, their Boards, and Funders

Water utility governing boards serve a critical role in ensuring the provision of clean, safe drinking water. Governing boards are tasked with making important and complex decisions in line with the utility’s mission, and they ultimately serve to keep water utilities accountable to the public. One of the most important roles of a governing board is to protect the utility’s long-term financial health and sustainability. Yet water utility governing board members don’t always have a background in finance or a strong understanding of key financial issues that impact the utility.

A new series of educational videos produced by the Environmental Finance Center at UNC Chapel Hill, with support from the Water Research Foundation, offers an engaging, accessible, and easily shareable resource on financial management topics designed specifically for water utility governing boards. The Water₡lips© Video Series describes challenges faced by water utilities across the country using eye catching visualizations and easy to understand explanations of concepts that can otherwise be daunting.

EPA Region 5 Leadership workshop

Medina County Library, Community Room A 201 S. Broadway St, Medina O.H. 44256 Dates and Times: 4/29/2014: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM, and 4/30/2014: 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM Leadership happens at every level of an organization regardless of the organization’s type or size. There are often strong stakeholder perspectives surrounding water issues as well as numerous challenges and opportunities. …