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Rowland Water District Adopts Shared Resources Agreement With Public Water Agencies Group
In the event of an emergency situation, Rowland Water District’s (RWD) recently adopted shared resources/mutual response agreement with the Public Water Agencies Group (PWAG) will ensure additional resources, when needed, for all 17 members of the informal association of public water agencies. Should an emergency arise, RWD would join neighboring agencies in coordinating efforts on the ground in the form of personnel, equipment and supplies from outside the emergency’s impact zone. In turn, should RWD’s region experience an emergency situation, they would be assisted by other members of the group with these same resources.
“We recognize that emergency situations may arise for any of our agencies and require additional assistance which may not be readily available, so we felt such an agreement would help us to better protect our respective communities,” explains Tom Coleman, RWD general manager. “Through this partnership, we will coordinate response activities, share resources and assist during local or regional emergencies, and assist in situations such as planned or unplanned outages.”
Members of the PWAG can request assistance either orally or in writing and specify what resources they might need — equipment, personnel, supplemental water supplies or other supplies. Each member agency has the of responding to the fellow agency’s need(s) or can decline to assist based on other circumstances would hinder their responding affirmatively at that time. The requesting agency is expected to reimburse the responding member agency for any costs incurred while providing resources during the specified emergency.
“Rowland Water’s partnership with the Public Water Agencies Group is a perfect example of working toward one of our primary initiatives in our strategic plan,” said RWD Board President Robert Lewis. “We are most effective for our customers and our region when we communicate with our neighbors and benefit from each-others’ knowledge, experience and resources. We believe this agreement can be a model for others and set an example in the region.”
Formed in the early 1960s, PWAG was found to provide a regional association where members’ managers could periodically meet to exchange ideas, discuss common problems, share solutions, and cost share on various mutually beneficial resources. The group recently decided to take a lead role in establishing a county-wide, water-oriented emergency management and assistance network.
The partnership between RWD and PWAG is in accordance with the California Emergency Services Act and the California Disaster and Civil Defense Master Mutual Aid Agreement. In addition to Rowland Water, PWAG is looking to expand its network and is currently pursuing shared responses agreements with other participating agencies.