Asset Management in Vermont and New Hampshire
Asset Management (AM) is defined by the EPA as “maintaining a desired level of service for what you want your assets to provide at the lowest life-cycle cost.” AM provides structure and assistance in operating, maintaining, upgrading, and replacing assets in a cost effective manner. For municipalities, it can be implemented for water, wastewater, stormwater, and transportation infrastructure. Once an AM program is developed, the municipality will have an inventory of their assets, including the condition of each asset, as well as a comprehensive picture of what assets are most critical at any given time, which will allow communities to plan for repairs and replacements. The ultimate goal of AM is to shift from “reactive” management to “proactive” management.
The Vermont Drinking Water State Revolving Fund has implemented funding incentives for water systems that participate in AM. These incentives include planning loan forgiveness for projects stemming from an approved AM program and award of additional priority points to Community Water Systems seeking a construction loan for improvements identified using an AM program. The State of Vermont has also developed grant programs to assist water and wastewater systems in developing AM programs:
- Vermont’s Capacity Development Program, in conjunction with the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, awarded $400,000 in grant funds, with a 20% match, earlier this year to assist approximately 20 water systems with AM programs. According to DEC officials, another round of grants will be offered in late 2016 or early 2017.
- Vermont’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund recently awarded $280,000 in grant funds, with no match, to approximately 10-15 wastewater systems with AM programs.
In New Hampshire, the Drinking Water and Groundwater Bureau of the Department of Environmental Services manages the asset management grant program. A 50% match is required for the grant to assist communities with developing AM programs. In 2016, New Hampshire awarded $170,000 in AM grants to community water systems serving a population of 500 or more.
Dufresne Group is currently working on AM plans for several towns in Vermont and New Hampshire. Most of these projects are funded by the grant programs described above.
- Barre City, VT Water Treatment Plant
- Carroll, NH Water System
- Hancock, NH Water System
- Chester, VT Stormwater System
- Northfield, VT Water System
- Randolph, VT Water System
- Manchester, VT Wastewater System
- Manchester, VT Water System
- Woodsville, NH Water System
- Montpelier, VT Water System
- Putney, VT Wastewater System
- St. Johnsbury, VT Water System
Almost all of the AM projects listed above have a primary focus on mapping and inventorying assets. However, many of these towns are also performing condition assessments and risk assessments of their assets with the goal of developing a complete AM plan.
If you are interested in learning how Asset Management can benefit your municipality or would like assistance with applying for an Asset Management grant, please contact one of our offices.