Page 13 - Salem Magazine Spring 2014
P. 13

Newsmakers
Water Department Achieves Gold Standard
  The City of Salem is pleased to announce that its Water Department has received the Gold Award for Excellence in Waterworks Operations and Performance from the Virginia Department of Health (VDH). This prestigious award recognizes water treatment facilities in Virginia that operate in an exemplary manner and provide water quality that exceeds all of the minimum regulatory standards.
“This shows our employees’ dedication to excellence in providing quality drinking water to the citizens of Salem,” says Larado Robinson, Salem Water Department Director. “I am very proud of each and every member of our
staff, who worked so hard to make this possible.”
Chief Water Treatment Plant Operator, Frank Young, and his team achieved a perfect score of 20 out of 20 points
for their operations and performance based on filtration, water clarity and filter backwash criteria. Only 22 water plants across the state earned Gold status for 2013.
“I think all the guys are pretty proud of this honor,” says Young. “The operators have to stay on top of things consistently by monitoring turbidity, pH levels and other characteristics of the water while staying within proper parameters at all times.”
The City of Salem Water Department opened its state-of-the-art water treatment facility on February 22, 2005. It is capable of producing 10 million gallons of drinking water a day for residential and business customers. Prior to this year, the plant had consistently garnered silver awards for its performance.
Chief Water Treatment Plant Operator Frank Young
  Freedom Driven Food
The City of Salem Farmers Market will be able to serve more families this summer thanks to a generous donation from Freedom First Credit Union. Freedom First Vice-President, Dave Prosser and Board of Director’s member, Judith Harrison, presented Mayor Randy Foley and Salem Farmers Market Director, Laura Reilly, with a $5,000 award earlier this year for use with the market’s EBT program.
 “The City of Salem is grateful, not only for this generous grant, but also for the relationship that has formed with Freedom First Credit Union,” Reilly said. “Their commitment to making a difference in the lives of the citizens of our community is inspiring and appreciated. The Salem Farmers Market is proud to partner with Freedom First by helping people in need while supporting local agriculture.”
The financial institution’s highly competitive Community Grant award is allowing the market to once again offer matching funds for its Electronic Benefit Transfer users. For example, SNAP program participants who spend $10 dollars for fresh fruit and produce will be able to get $20 worth of food thanks to the grant.
“Freedom First’s continued growth allowed us to expand our grants program this year, at a time when need among nonprofits and the households they serve continues to increase,” said Prosser, Freedom First’s Vice President of Community Development.
This summer the market is allowing EBT customers $50 per day in matching funds. The Salem Farmers Market is open Fridays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. -1 p.m.
www.salemva.gov | SPRING 2014
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