New services district gets top personnel in place

Jim Doohan, a 28-year Quincy Community Services District employee, is the new general manager for the American Valley Community Services District. Doohan served as acting general manager following longtime general manager Larry Sullivan’s retirement last fall. Photos by Victoria Metcalf

The newly formed American Valley Community Services District now has a general manager and an assistant manager.

The news was announced at the regularly scheduled AVCSD board of director’s meeting Thursday, Feb. 8.

Jim Doohan, acting general manager of the former Quincy Community Services District, accepted the position of general manager.

Mike Green, general manager of the former East Quincy Services District, accepted the position of assistant general manager.

To expedite the reorganization process, a personnel flow chart from QCSD was used as a starting point.

Doohan and Green are not only looking at the positions, certifications and grade levels required by the state, but also the number of years individuals have worked for either district.

This is particularly important when assessing certification and grade level. According to state requirements, time spent on a job is an essential component in determining qualifications.

While considering grade and certification needs, Doohan and Green will be making sure that they have whatever qualifications in place to meet the needs of the new wastewater treatment plant. AVCSD President Denny Churchill said he talked with PACE engineering about the requirements for the treatment plant it is designing.

Mike Green, who has worked at both QCSD and then as general manager at East Quincy Services District, is the new assistant general manager for the American Valley Community Services District. Green is in charge of operations for the newly formed district.

Green said that a Grade four position might be necessary to meet those requirements.

Green said AVCSD might be able to get PACE to design the new facility as a grade three plant because of the lower levels of wastewater that would go through it.

Briefly explaining the certification process, AVCSD administrative assistant Katie Nunn said that water and wastewater treatment plant workers must be certified by the state. Each certification requires training and testing. Within the certification process are grade levels of 1, 2, 3 and 4. Each grade level requires testing and time on the job.

Green said that it requires 1,800 hours of wastewater work experience before someone could take the test for the next grade level.

It was the state requirement for a new wastewater treatment plant and the necessity to seek a loan to pay for the projected $26 million operation that led to the consolidation of QCSD and EQSD.

Director Mike Beatty recommended an ad hoc committee be formed to help deal with grade levels, years and certifications.

Directors also discussed who should pay for license fees and training.

Until recently QCSD, now known as West, paid for training but employees paid for their own licenses. The reason was that employees own their licenses. They can take it with them if they leave.

EQSD, now known as East, paid for both training and licenses.

Doohan said it cost him $300 for his grade three license. Nunn pointed out that license fees are going down.

Director Bill Martin said he thought it was an even trade. “We pay for training, they for the license.”

Other business

Although directors had no other announcements to share concerning personnel positions, the personnel committee, consisting of four directors, had firmed up PERS (Public Employees’ Retirement System) plans for both East and West.

Directors also approved a resolution establishing regular meeting times and places. The second Thursday at 9 a.m. is set. Although the community room at the Plumas County Library is available for March and April meetings, other alternatives are being sought.

Neither East nor West has room to seat a 10-member board, additional personnel and any audience.

Although the process of bringing the two formerly separate districts together is moving along, Vice President Kathy Felker pointed out that each district has separate debt obligations. East and West also have different rate schedules.

Felker said she is anticipating a budget shortfall next fall because of salary increases to bring employees into alignment. However, there are reserves that have been set aside to meet those needs.