Water Utility Training & Assistance During COVID-19

NATIONAL TRIBAL WATER AND WASTEWATER OPERATOR CERTIFICATION PROGRAM

ANNOUNCEMENT ON NOVEL CORONA VIRUS COVID-19 

POSTPONEMENT OF IN-PERSON TRAINING AND

CONTINUATION OF TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE AND OPERATOR CERTIFICATION SERVICES

March 19, 2020  Updated: March 29, 2021

The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. (ITCA) is a tribally-controlled non-profit organization that serves on behalf of Indian Country.  ITCA’s Board of Directors consists of the elected officials that have the sworn duty to protect and serve each of their respective tribal nations.  As a tribal consortium of 21 tribal nations, we work in tandem with tribal communities in Arizona and beyond.  As a tribally-controlled non-profit organization, we put the safety and health of tribal members as our highest priority.

In order to respond to the ever changing COVID-19 situation, the Executive Managers of the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. have made the decision to postpone all In-Person program services. The postponement of all In-Person program services has been extended through December 31, 2021. ITCA is acting on behalf of concern for the safety of all community members, attendees, tribal leaders, and our staff as the ongoing concern of COVID-19 (coronavirus) continues to emerge with updates daily.  ITCA will continue to monitor the situation and in time, when conditions improve, will begin the rescheduling process for the postponed events.  The following services will continue as much as possible through a staffing succession and continuity plan that  continues to be implemented by the ITCA Tribal Water Systems Department. Please note that during this time period, our staff continue to be working from home.

TECHINCAL ASSISTANCE SERVICES WILL CONTINUE BY VIRTUAL MEANS
The existing network of ITCA consultant subject-matter experts that provides free technical assistance to Tribal water and wastewater utilities throughout the Midwest and Western U.S. remains available through virtual means. ITCA continues to offer free “Virtual-Technical Assistance” services for Tribal water and wastewater utilities. Use your phones, portable devices, and computers to directly connect with ITCA consultant subject-matter experts on technical, managerial, and financial matters of operating and maintaining water utilities. Please see the TWS Technical Assistance webpage for more information or contact Bruce Robinson at bruce.robinson@itcaonline.com.

Click Here: Technical Assistance

TRAINING ALTERNATIVES
ITCA developed highly successful alternative training pathways for Tribal water and wastewater utilities. During 2021, ITCA will continue to offer web-based, live online training options in lieu of in-person trainings. Please see the TWS 2021 Training Calendar webpage for more information.

Click Here: 2021 Training Calendar

OPERATOR CERTIFICATION SERVICES
ITCA maintains continued operator certification services and water utility workforce development services through virtual interaction. Please see the TWS Certification website for more information, application forms, and instructions.

Click Here: Certification

  • Renewal of Expiring Tribal Operator Certification – ITCA continues to accept and process applications for the renewal of expiring operator certifications.  ITCA has always assisted Tribal operators who timely submit renewal applications prior to certification expiration and has worked with such operators to extend expiration deadlines in concert with an approved continuing education plan.  In response to the COVID-19 situation, ITCA allowed for an automatic 10-months extension to certifications that were originally set to expire during the 2020 calendar year. On a case-by-case basis, ITCA will allow for extensions to certification that are originally set to expire during the 2021 calendar year (and had not received an extension in 2020) For more information, please contact Michelle Ragsdale at michelle.ragsdale@itcaonline.com.
  • Computer-Based Testing – For several years, ITCA has offered year-round Computer-Based Testing for Tribal operator certification through a third-party arrangement with PSI, which maintains a network of over 300 testing centers nationwide.  ITCA will continue to accept and process registrations and applications for Tribal operator certification through Computer-Based Testing.  However, please understand that specific computer-based testing center locations may have exam appointment scheduling limitations in response to Covid-19 conditions. For more information, please contact Harrenson Gorman at harrenson.gorman@itcaonline.com.
  • Reciprocity – ITCA will continue to accept and process applications for reciprocity of water and wastewater operator certifications. For more information please contact Brian Bennon at brian.bennon@itcaonline.com.

 

In case of water related emergency, contact your primacy agency and follow local emergency response procedures.  If you need further assistance, contact ITCA.

How to Contact the ITCA Tribal Water Department during the COVID-19 situation.

Brian Bennon, ITCA Tribal Water Department Director, brian.bennon@itcaonline.com, direct office line (602) 307-1537

Bruce Robinson, ITCA Technical Assistance Project Manager, bruce.robinson@itcaonline.com

Lionel Puhuyesva, ITCA Utilities Development  Program Manager, lionel.puhuyesva@itcaonline.com, cell phone: (602) 316-2961

Marguerite Sheehan, Certification Specialist II, marguerite.sheehan@itcaonline.com

Michelle Ragsdale, Certification Specialist II, michelle.ragsdale@itcaonline.com

Harrenson Gorman, Certification Specialist, harrenson.gorman@itcaonline.com

Amara Kamara, Certification Specialist, amara.kamara@itcaonline.com

John Miller, Certification Specialist, john.miller@itcaonline.com

Matthew Pickert, Certification Specialist, matthew.pickert@itcaonline.com

 

ITCA automated phone directory, (602) 258-4822

Tribal Water Systems Department email address: TWSInfo@itcaonline.com