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Jersey Water Works Conference

December 13, 2023

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Join us at The College of New Jersey Brower Student Center in Ewing, NJ on December 13.

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

The Value of Water | New Jersey Edition

8:00 a.m. Door Opens, Networking Registration, Exhibitor’s Table




9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Beyond the Initial Inventories: Identifying unknowns, Complying with LCRI, LCRR, and NJ state laws 

  • Federal Lead and Copper Rule Revision/Improvement  (LCRR/I)  Requirements — Kristin Epstein, CDM Smith
  • Latest Service Line Inventory Methods and Their Costs—Sandy Kutzing, CDM Smith
  • Lead Service Line Replacement Compliance  and New Jersey Technical Assistance Program (NJTAP) — Alaina Ungarini, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection  (NJDEP)
  • Panel: Identifying Unknowns and Conducting Customer-Side Replacements.
    • Michael Furrey, Agra Environmental and Laboratory Services (moderator)
    • Michael Cohrs, Ridgewood Water Business Manager
    • Jan Chwiedosiuk, Middlesex Water
    • Kouao-Eric Ekoue, New Brunswick
    • Stephen Marks, Town of Kearny
    • Don Shields, New Jersey American Water
  • Accredited by the New Jersey Water Association:
    • 2.5 TCH for NJ-Licensed Water Operators.TCH#: 04-122301-10
    • 2.5 Credits for NJ-Certified Public Works Managers (1.0 Technical, 1.5 Technical)
    • 2.5 PDH for NJ Professional Engineers



9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Breakout Sessions 1

Exploring Shared Services: Why, How, Examples

For communities struggling to manage their water systems, shared services programs can help reduce costs and improve service delivery. This session will offer an overview of the Local Efficiency Achievement Program (LEAP) grants offered by the Department of Community Affairs (DCA). The grant provides funding for local governments to advance shared services efforts. Join this conversation and learn more about how utilities can pull their resources together, share technical expertise, and leverage their shared capacities to increase efficiencies and lower costs. The session will begin with a short presentation by a local artist, who uses her art to engage others in thinking about water and environmental issues.

  • Lee Clark, Program Manager, Funding Navigator, New Jersey Future
  • Laurie Ann Doyle, Grant Administrator for the Local Efficiency Achievement Program (LEAP), NJ Department of Community Affairs
  • Lauren Rosenthal McManus, Artist
  • Rick Richardella, Bureau Chief for the State of New Jersey, Division of Local Government Services, NJ Department of Community Affairs 
  • Approved by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) for 1.5 CM credit. 

Green & Gray: Solutions to Manage Stormwater and CSOs

Does your community experience flooding and impaired waterways? The updated Tier A MS4 and CSO Permits in NJ are regulatory drivers to manage stormwater and implement green infrastructure. Join expert panelists to learn more about policies, innovative projects, and approaches to managing stormwater from municipal, state, and regional perspectives.

  • Christine Ash, Acting Deputy Director, Water Division, US EPA Region 2 (moderator)
  • Jennifer Gonzales, AICP, PP, CFM, Chief Sustainability Officer, City of Hoboken 
  • Joseph Mannick, Section Chief, Bureau of Surface Water & Pretreatment Permitting, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
  • Gabryella Pulsinelli, Environmental Specialist, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
  • Elliott Ruga, Policy & Communications Director, New Jersey Highlands Coalition
  • Approved by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) for 1.5 CM credit. 

Pathways to Funding Climate Resilient Projects

As the impacts of climate change get worse, New Jersey’s communities need to prepare accordingly. The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is implementing new laws and regulations to ensure municipalities are addressing the impacts of climate change. However, local governments often lack the capacity and resources to plan and implement climate resilience initiatives and projects effectively. How are the DEP’s new laws and regulations going to impact local governments? How can communities better prepare for the effects of climate change? What types of funding sources are available for climate resilience planning and projects? How can these funding sources be best accessed? Learn from leaders in the field working on solutions to these challenges.

  • Yasmine Pessar, Principal Environmental Planner, City of Hoboken (moderator)
  • Nick Angarone, PP/AICP, New Jersey Chief Resilience Officer and Manager of the Office of Climate Resilience, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
  • Charles Jenkins, Assistant Director of the Municipal Finance & Construction Element, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection 
  • Samantha Thomas, Environmental Program Planner, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
  • David Zimmer, Executive Director, New Jersey Infrastructure Bank
  • Approved by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) for 1.5 CM credit. 

10:30 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Break

10:45 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Breakout Sessions 2

Communicating the Value of Water

Not only do we share “one water”, we share the same water as the generations before us. Our current generation has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to improve our water systems, due to unprecedented federal funding, to positively impact the quality, management, and accessibility of water for generations to come. This session will explore the commonalities and differences in communicating issues facing watersheds, utilities, and municipalities as they manage water quality, water management, and flooding while increasing public engagement and awareness. This breakout session will function as an open dialogue between panelists and session participants to better share experiences and resources across platforms and audiences as we work together to share the responsibility of managing our “one water” in harmony.

  • Michael Atkins, Communications Director, New Jersey Future
  • Hailey Benson, Co-Founder, North Bergen Earth Talks
  • Denise Venuti Free, Senior Director of Communications & External Affairs, New Jersey American Water

Partnering to Advance Water Workforce Initiatives in New Jersey

To develop and improve the water workforce, it’s crucial to involve a wide range of organizations. This includes utility executives, educational institutions, career centers, and community-based organizations. Partnering with these groups is vital for gaining valuable information, knowledge, and insights. By seeking their input on existing resources, requirements, challenges, and opportunities, we can ensure that initiatives are well-informed. The session will feature information about the Water Workforce Utility Pilot Project at Hudson County Community College and the Emerging Water Leaders Leadership Circle. Jersey Water Works members are collaborating with partners to advance water workforce development. Learn more!

  • Michael Assante, Project Manager, Bayonne, Municipal Water Contract Operations, Veolia North America
  • Nicole E. Brown, Client Development Manager, Suburban Consulting Engineers, Inc.; SISTEM (networks of women of color in water), Emerging Leaders Project
  • Jennifer Harris, Project Manager/Engineer, Environmental Resolutions, Inc.
  • John Libitz, Contract Compliance and Client Director, Veolia North America
  • Catherina Mirasol, Director, Continuing Education & Workforce Development, Hudson County Community College

Let’s Talk About PFAs and Other Contaminants

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a large class of human-made forever chemicals that have significant health impacts and contaminating water sources. New Jersey’s water and sewer systems face multiple converging needs -legacy issues such as aging infrastructure, lead, and combined sewer overflows along with new threats such as PFAS and climate change. Although we may have more questions than solutions when it comes to PFAS, it’s essential to start somewhere and find opportunities to collaborate where relevant. We invite you to learn more about PFAS, hear from state and utility sector representatives on the work already happening, and be part of a collaborative problem solving vision. This roundtable discussion provides an opportunity to get some high level perspectives on the issue of PFAS.

  • Christine Ballard, CDM Smith (moderator)
  • Jim Cosgrove, Principal, One Water Consulting LLC
  • Patricia (Trish) Ingelido, Director, Division of Water Supply and Geoscience, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
  • Susan (Sue) Rosenwinkel, Assistant Director, Division of Water Quality, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
  • Nicole Wiley, Engineering Practice Lead, American Water

12:00 p.m. – 12:50 p.m. Lunch

1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. General Session: Keynote & Plenary

Welcome by Nicole Miller, JWW Steering Committee co-chair

TCNJ Welcome by Michael A. Bernstein Ph.D., TCNJ President

Title Sponsor Remarks by Don Shields, Vice President and Director of Engineering, New Jersey American Water

Keynote: Water 2050: Charting a Course for a Safe and Sustainable Water Future

In the next 30 years, the most salient environmental and social issues will involve water: who has it, who doesn’t, is it safe,  is it affordable, how it is managed and by whom. It is crucial to envision the future and analyze the forces that shape it to help the water community plan and be proactive. The American Water Works Association’s Water 2050 initiative aims to create a long-term vision for the future of water. This collaborative initiative is charting a course for a secure and sustainable water sector by engaging in meaningful conversations, enlisting strategic partners, fostering intergenerational responsibility, and capturing collective knowledge, all leading to a strategy and implementation plan. Dr. Joe Jacangelo, Vice President, Director of Research at Stantec, Immediate Past President of AWWA (2023-2024), and faculty member at The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health will share more about the AWWA’s Water 2050 initiative and his thoughts about the future of water.

  • Joe Jacangelo, PhD, REHS, Vice President, Director of Research, Stantec, and Immediate Past President of AWWA (2023-2024)
  • Approved by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) for 0.5 CM credit. 

Return on Investment: Whose Investment and Whose Return?

Using capital project funds in a cost-effective manner with a good return on investment (ROI) is important, but are we counting the appropriate costs and benefits? Recent research shows the usefulness of accounting for more costs than utility cash outlays and more benefits than meeting permit requirements. Can a broader evaluation of ROI provide good arguments for increasing public support for and bringing non-traditional funding into water infrastructure projects?

  • Daniel J. Van Abs, PhD, FAICP/PP, Rutgers University

One Water, Many Perspectives: A Roundtable Discussion

It’s impossible to overstate the importance of water to New Jersey’s health, economy, and quality of life. The water we drink, swim in, boat on, and use in manufacturing is essential to our state’s very being. Jersey Water Works (JWW) members believe that smart infrastructure builds strong communities and share one overarching vision: to transform New Jersey’s water infrastructure. We know that only through collaboration can this vision be achieved. This sentiment aligns with the Water 2050 collaborative initiative led by AWWA in which suggests that we need to “create a culture in which everyone has a personal connection to water and a sense of shared responsibility for it.” Local and elected officials have a crucial role to play in managing water infrastructure and stormwater, and so do educators, researchers, utility staff, and community organizers. There is no limit to the possibilities that we can achieve together, based on our shared knowledge, experience, and networks. Conversation around this roundtable will be centered around the theme of the conference, The Value of Water | New Jersey Edition. How can we help the public better understand the complexity of the value of water and get behind in making sound decisions today that will impact generations to come?

  • Rosana Pedra Nobre, Water Quality Manager, NY-NJ Harbor & Estuary Program at the Hudson River Foundation (moderator)
  • Helmin J. Caba, Mayor, Perth Amboy
  • Linda Greenstein, New Jersey Senator (LD-14)
  • Joe Jacangelo, PhD, REHS, Vice President, Director of Research, Stantec, and Immediate Past President of AWWA
  • Tenisha Malcolm, Director of the Urban Mayors Policy Center, John S. Watson Institute for Urban Policy and Research at Kean University

3:00 p.m. Conference Adjourns

*The Value of Water Campaign is supported by top leaders from across the water industry committed to raising awareness about the importance of water and the often invisible water challenges threatening our country (US Water Alliance).

** Final agenda will include breakout session descriptions and presenter information.

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