Bear sighting last week, across the street from Jensen Water Treatment Plant in Granada Hills
(Not sure if it was before or after taking a dip in a nearby residential pool.)
A weekly newsletter by and for Metropolitan employees
July 23, 2018
Win Dodgers Tickets!  To support Metropolitan’s new 365 Save Water Every Day conservation campaign, we have four pairs of Dodgers game tickets for Metropolitan employees. 

To enter, fill out this short survey by noon Thur., July 26. Names will be drawn for one pair of tickets for the Aug. 15 game vs. SF Giants and Aug. 22 game vs. St. Louis Cardinals. A second drawing for tickets for games on Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 will be on Aug. 6 with details to follow.  
PBS Show on 10 Marvels that Changed America
General Manager Jeff Kightlinger will be featured this week on an episode of the PBS show, “10 Modern Marvels That Changed America.”  Here's a preview .

This show highlights the nation’s top 10 civil engineering feats. It begins at the Erie Canal, a 363-mile-long man-made waterway that was built in the 19th century by laborers using primitive hand tools. Then shows how engineers connected our growing nation with bridges, rail networks, and a continent-wide system of freeways.

Then the episode looks to the extreme measures engineers have taken to deliver water from distant rivers to cities and farms. This segment, which features the Hoover Dam and Colorado River system, includes an interview of GM Kightlinger that was filmed on location a few months ago.

As the show’s teaser says, “It’s easy to take these modern marvels for granted. After all, we usually access our roads, bridges and drinking water effortlessly. But behind many of our daily conveniences there is a clever engineer, and a remarkable story.”

The show first airs on Tues., July 24 on PBS SoCal/KOCE in Los Angeles and will replay several times. More info is on the show’s website .

Other episodes of this season’s PBS documentary series showcase monuments that commemorate America’s history and streets that connect our communities. 
Cyanobacteria Closes Diamond Valley Lake
The cyanobacterial blooms (also known as blue-green algae) that have closed Diamond Valley Lake to recreational uses since June 21 are not unique to Metropolitan and may be becoming more common.

That was one of the conclusions from Paul Rochelle , Microbiology Unit Manager, who gave a presentation to the Board’s Engineering and Operations committee on July 9.  Rochelle said this is due partly to climate change and the increase in nutrient-rich runoff from agriculture and urbanization that provide favorable conditions for proliferation of cyanobacteria.

Rochelle emphasized that this is a recreation issue at DVL, not a drinking water issue. Metropolitan is not currently drawing water supplies from the lake. If and when it does, that water will be taken from deeper levels in the lake and treated to the highest quality drinking water standards at our treatment plants.

Cyanobacteria are naturally-occurring organisms found in most aquatic environments and, under certain conditions, reproduce exponentially to form vivid green clouds and ‘mats.’ Metropolitan routinely tests its waters and follows voluntary guidelines. 

Met has an active research program and has contributed to guidance on how utilities can manage cyanotoxins. Staff also has a pending grant application with NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to use satellites to detect cyanobacterial blooms.
Coming Soon to a
Theater Near You
Facilities Design Unit Manager Howard Lum is a man of many talents. Engineer, college professor and award-winning movie producer are all titles held by this accomplished member of the Met family.

Lum’s latest film, Fortune Defies Death , will be in limited release nationwide this fall. The murder-mystery thriller is about family, secrets, wealth and greed. One look at the trailer and you’re drawn into the Woods family drama ( trailer ). Other film credits include Man-Made: Hoover Dam Reinvented , which takes an innovative look at rebuilding the engineering wonder with the technologies available today.

Howard enjoys the production process. From seeking investors to developing scripts, He breaks down the formula of 20 minutes in the beginning to draw in the audience and 20 minutes at the end to solve the problem. “If you don’t do it in 20 minutes, you’ve failed," he said. With more than a dozen award nominations for his latest film, Howard has clearly mastered the filmmaking formula.

And the awards keep coming. In addition to previous awards during his decade as an instructor, Howard was named Cal State LA’s 2018 Lecturer of the Year.
As for how he does it all, Howard makes it sound very simple. "Look for the right people, and rely on them.” For him, that right person is his wife Jennifer, who is also his filmmaking partner, serving as writer and director. It’s an (award) winning combination.
New hires, transfers, promotions & retirements are posted here each month.   
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