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MCES Vision – Be a valued leader and partner in water sustainability.  
Our application addresses seven of the eight Activity Areas included in the Utility of the Future Today 
Recognition Program.  Each is listed below, and includes highlights from our application forms:  
 
Organizational Culture 
MCES has accomplished or is implementing all of the activities provided as examples and several more.  
As highlighted in our application forms, MCES included over 60 staff from across the organization in the 
development of the Strategic Vision Plan.  A key takeaway for the group, including some of our most 
traditional senior managers, was the recognition and acknowledgement that positive results were 
achieved through this highly collaboration process.  This lead to the development of business processes 
that support and hold accountable strategic initiative teams, establishment of a Department of 
Continuous Improvement to improve Ci skills, and establishment of workforce planning activities in 
which all employees can volunteer to participate.  Initiatives and/or teams or networks were also 
established in the areas of equity, employee engagement surveys, maintaining a respectful workplace, 
employee wellness and the practice of collaboration both internally and externally to achieve a higher 
level of engagement.   We are still learning to bring process solutions to bear to neutralize two 
tendencies that “silos,” even excellent ones, can develop.  These are tribalism (“we are the experts,”) 
and tunnel visions that prevents us from appreciating what we don’t know.  We firmly believe that the 
whole will be more than the sum of the parts in our quest to become a Utility of the Future Today.     
 
Beneficial Biosolids Use 
MCES has completed or is implementing all of the activities provided as examples and several more.  We 
are working to increase our percentage of biosolids use overall and provide specific examples of how we 
are doing so at three of our treatment plants in a variety of ways.  This includes improved pad 
management practices, evaluating the potential for utilizing the phosphorus-rich incinerator ash and 
working with a local dairy to divert industrial waste discharge directly to digestion to reduce activated 
sludge production and increase cake solids.  
 
Community Partnering and Engagement  
MCES has completed or is implementing all of the activities provided as examples and many more.  Our 
on-going Inflow and Infiltration Program (I/I) Program has been in place for 10 years and was established 
with a community task force.  This has resulted in no consent decrees, no growth moratoriums, no I/I 
related capacity or storage projects and limited overflows.   
MCES is currently undertaking an annual $100 million Interceptor Rehabilitation Capital Projects 
program through the implementation of a robust community outreach and communications plan and 
utilization of a triple bottom line approach.    
 
Another highlighted program, and one that is relatively new, is the Solar Garden Collaboration.  In 
addition to installing solar in some of our facilities, MCES lead a competitive procurement process for 
community solar gardens and invited other public agencies and communities to participate.  This 
program allowed 31 collaborating governments (city, county and agencies,)  to support the growth of 
renewable energy without having to own, operate and maintain their own solar infrastructure, and to 
take advantage of the economies of scale to do so at a lower cost.  The program will provide power 
equivalent to that required by about 12,000 homes annually.   
5 sub-regional water sustainability groups representing 80% of the region and serving the metro area’s 3 
million population coordinate water supply, reuse and other water issues.  Communities are engaged 
through a Metro Area Water Advisory Committee and Technical Advisory Committee to guide regional 
planning for water sustainability for 200+communities.