483 

 

City:       Spartanburg                                                  State: SC 

Zip Code: 29304 

Contact Information  

Name:  John Westcott 

Phone:  (864) 580-5685 

Email:  jwestcott@spartanburgwater.org 

 

NARRATIVE: Spartanburg Water consists of two distinct political entities operating together under a 
common name.  Spartanburg Water System is a Commission of Public Works created in 1908 by the 
General Assembly of the State of South Carolina to provide public water utility services to Spartanburg 
and surrounding communities.  The system utilizes surface water from three large reservoirs totaling 
approximately 13 billion gallons of storage.  The CPW is governed by a three member Commission 
elected by the residents of the City of Spartanburg. Spartanburg Sanitary Sewer District is a special 
purpose district originally established by Act No. 556 of 1929 to provide sewer transportation and 
treatment services. Act No. 1503 of 1970 added sewer collection to the District’s services.   

The District is governed by a seven member Commission consisting of the three CPW Commissioners, 
three additional Commissioners elected by the residents of the District’s service area, and the Mayor of 
Spartanburg.  The Commissions hire a single Chief Executive Officer to manage both entities, and the 
entities share common management, administrative, engineering, construction, maintenance, 
laboratory and other services.  Spartanburg Water serves a population of approximately 200,000 
including retail and wholesale customers, and has a combined annual operating budget of $65M for the 
current fiscal year.  Our mission is to provide quality water and wastewater services in a reliable 
manner. We are committed to protecting public health, being good stewards of the environment, and 
supporting our community's desired quality of life. 

Spartanburg Water’s organization culture is defined by its resilience and the development of innovative 
solutions to the many environmental challenges and forces that can have both direct and indirect 
impacts on a modern utility. Ours is an “innovation culture” that results from an inclusive environment 
championed by all sectors of the organization.  This is only achievable through an employee 
development and engagement process that focuses on diversity, collaboration and inclusion.  

We make numerous opportunities for personal and professional development available to staff, 
including workshops and webinars, as well as safety, supervisory, leadership, ethics and diversity 
training sponsored by Spartanburg Water and taught by outside experts via the Upstate Employers 
Network and other organizations.  We also offer tuition reimbursement for post-secondary education 
related to our mission.  In addition, we sponsor two employees each year to the Leadership Spartanburg 
program.  Founded in 1979 by the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce, this is a nine-month course 
designed to better prepare leaders and volunteers for community service through exploration of issues, 
challenges and opportunities facing Spartanburg County now and in the future. 

To address changes in the available workforce, Spartanburg Water, Apprenticeship Carolina and Central 
Carolina Technical College have partnered with the SC Environmental Certification Board to develop 
Apprenticeship Program opportunities for drinking water and reclaimed water treatment facilities.  The 
Apprenticeship Program uses on-the-job training, education and wage progression as tools to develop 
an operational workforce that is registered through the US Department of Labor.   

Over the past few years, Spartanburg Water has faced many challenges, including weather volatility, 
aging infrastructure, regulatory pressures, funding pressures and the changing dynamics of our