ELP Gold Leader - Clifton Sanitation District

Water treatment facilities 

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Clifton Sanitation District
Member since 2017

Clifton Sanitation District is located on the western slope between Grand Junction and Palisade and provides sanitary sewer service to an estimated 21,000 residents and the Community of Whitewater. The District was initially formed in 1967 operating two lagoon wastewater treatment systems discharging into the Colorado River. The purpose of Clifton Sanitation District is to provide safe conveyance and treatment of residential and commercial wastewater for the Clifton, portions of Fruitvale and Whitewater communities. The District works to insure environmentally safe discharge of effluent under state and federal guidelines at the lowest practical cost in keeping with sound financial business practice and public trust. Clifton Sanitation District is an Enterprise Fund.  It is self-supporting with expenses paid from its own revenue sources and does not receive any revenues from property taxes. Charges for collection and treatment of wastewater comprise the funds for operations, maintenance and debt service.  
From 2005 through 2015 the District went through a major transformation to meet the growth-related needs of the oil and gas industry while addressing the water quality requirements from State and Federal agencies. Clifton Sanitation Districts 1 and 2 were combined to form the current Clifton Sanitation District in 2006 eliminating a discharge point to the Colorado River. The District utilized capital financial reserves from new development tap fees (plant investment fees) accrued over the previous 25 years for the transformation.  
Growth and development from the oil and gas industry as well as Federally-mandated ammonia discharge requirements for the Colorado River required the District to begin design in 2005 and construction of the Clifton Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility (CRWWTF) was completed in 2009. Reclamation and decommissioning of the three lagoon facilities was completed in 2012. In addition to the construction of a new plant, the District was required to upgrade, replace, or install approximately 35,000 feet of collection system improvements. The District encumbered approximately $28 million in project expenses through 2011. Despite the challenges presented by these projects, all were completed under budget and on time. The end result is a regional wastewater treatment facility serving multiple districts in unincorporated Mesa County including the newly formed Whitewater Public Improvement District and other areas of unincorporated Mesa County. The project has become a regional approach to solving the water quality problems while addressing the growth in Clifton and the surrounding areas.