Montana District Wins Tap Water Taste Test

June 11, 2015
Water provider secures top honor at AWWA ACE15

The American Water Works Assn. (AWWA) announced that the Big Sky County Water & Sewer District, Big Sky, Mont., has won the 11th annual “Best of the Best” Tap Water Taste Test. Second place in the competition was given to Universal City, Texas. The event, composed of regional winners from water-tasting competitions across North America, was held at AWWA’s Annual Conference and Exposition (ACE15) in Anaheim, Calif.

The Big Sky County Water & Sewer District is a special purpose unit of government organized to regulate and operate the public water and sewer systems of Big Sky, Mont. Their source water is untreated groundwater.

Third place in the competition was a tie between the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority and last year’s champions the Boston Water and Sewer Commission. The People’s Choice award winner, as determined by the conference attendees, went to Champlain Water District of South Burlington, Vt.

Other “Best of the Best” participants in today’s competition included: Arcadia Water Utility, Arcadia, Wisc.; City of Anaheim Public Utilities Department, Anaheim, Calif.; City of Chelsea, Mich.; City of Fargo, N.D.; City of Hamilton, Ohio; Latham Water District, Latham, N.Y.; City of Tallahassee Underground Utilities, Tallahassee, Fla.; City of Tulsa, Okla.; City of Universal City, Texas; Chester Water Authority, Chester, Penn.; Duck River Utility Commission, Tullahoma, Tenn.; Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District, Herriman, Utah; Georgetown County Water & Sewer District, Pawley’s Island, S.C.; Henry County Water Authority, Jackson, Ga.; Leeds Water Works Board, Leeds, Ala.; Lincoln Water System, Lincoln, Neb.; Merchantville Pennsauken Water Commission, Pennsauken, N.J.; Moorhead Public Service, Moorhead, Minn.; North Park Public Water District, Machesney, Ill.; Puerto Rico Aqueduct and Sewer Authority, San Juan, P.R.; Spotsylvania County Utilities, Fredericksburg, Va.; Valley Water District, Puyallup, Wash.; Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, Laurel, Md.; WaterOne, Kansas City, Kan., and West Virginia American Water, Charleston, W.V.

A judging panel rated each water system on its flavor characteristics. Judges included James Naylor, project manager at Alan Plummer Associates; Cliff Shrive, senior principal for Stantec Consulting and Patrick Planton, senior principal for Short Elliott Hendrickson.

This is the eleventh year AWWA has held the national competition. Previous winners are Boston Water and Sewer Commission (2014), Oklahoma City Water and Wastewater Utility (2007 and 2013), Fremont, Neb. (2012), Greenville, S.C. (2011), Stevens Point, Wis. (2010), Macon (Ga.) Water Authority (2009), Louisville (Ky.) Water Company (2008) and Illinois American Water, Champaign District (2006 and 2005).

Source: American Water Works Assn.

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