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City Hires Two Labs to Conduct Water Quality Tests

Bob Kronovetrealty
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By Lookout Staff

October 16, 2019 -- The City Council on Tuesday approved contracts totaling more than $3 million with two laboratories that will analyze Santa Monica's water quality over the next five years.

The larger contract will pay Weck Laboratories $2.35 million for laboratory analysis of drinking water, wastewater, stormwater, groundwater and urban runoff for the Public Works Department.

Eurofins Eaton Analytical, LLC was awarded a $1 million contract over five years to "provide flexibility and to help ensure timely reporting of water quality results."

The two California-based laboratories will ensure the water provided to Santa Monica's 93,000 residents and 2,741 commercial and institutional customers is safe and meets the more stringent requirements imposed by the state.

"The City does not possess the equipment and capabilities to perform the specialized laboratory work, which is required by state regulatory agencies," staff said in its report to the Council.

The specialized laboratory services will supplement the functions performed by the City’s internal drinking water laboratory, which analyzes "current, established regulated drinking water constituents," staff said.

The contracted laboratories will also analyze water quality from several infrastructure projects that will allow the City to meet its goal of providing all of its own water by 2023.

These include testing water from the Clean Beaches tank, the Santa Monica Urban Runoff Recycling Facility (SMURRF) and the new Sustainable Water Infrastructure Project (SWIP), which is required for regulatory permitting.

The analysis conducted by the labs will also ensure the City's water quality meets the new parameters set by the state for safe drinking water, staff said.

"The City does not possess the appropriate certifications and laboratory equipment to perform these required analyses," staff wrote in its report.

The two laboratories also will support ongoing work in the Water Resources Protection Programs (WRPPs), which requires ensuring the City’s industrial facilities are in compliance with federal, state and local requirements.

Having two laboratories conduct the water tests ensures the "timely reporting of water quality results" in the event instruments are being repaired or there is "a high volume of samples requiring analysis," staff said.

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