The City of Chino Hills operates a public water system that is regulated by the California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Division of Drinking Water (DDW). The City is one of eight members of the Inland Empire Utilities Agency (IEUA); a wholesale water agency providing imported water purchased from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWDSC) to Chino Hills. The remainder of the Chino Hills’ water supply is provided from local groundwater wells and recycled water by other local water agencies.
On July 18, 2017, the SWRCB adopted Resolution No. 2017-0042 which established a maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 0.005 micrograms per liter (µg/L) for 1,2,3-Trichloropropane (1,2,3-TCP). 1,2,3-TCP is a man-made chemical that was an impurity in pesticides. 1,2,3-TCP is classified by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as “likely to be carcinogenic to humans” and is recognized by the State of California as a human carcinogen. 1,2,3-TCP contaminants have been found in the Chino Hills groundwater wells at levels that exceed the new MCL of 0.005 µg/L. These existing wells extract groundwater from the Chino Groundwater Basin. With the new 1,2,3-TCP MCL effective on December 14, 2017, the City’s wells remain inactive and inoperable.
Engineering Design Services
On May 8, 2018, the City hired Michael Baker International, Inc. to address the engineering issues regarding the removal of 1,2,3-TCP from the existing City groundwater wells. On January 17, 2019, a preliminary design report (PDR) for the project was completed with the recommendation (preferred alternative) to install a centralized granulated activated carbon (GAC) treatment facility at the Chino Hills Booster Station 9. The proposed GAC treatment plant is considered to be the current best available technology for removing 1,2,3-TCP from the groundwater. The Chino Hills proposed GAC treatment plant will include installation of eight GAC treatment vessels in a tandem series train for the removal of the 1,2,3-TCP from the City’s groundwater supply prior to sending the domestic water for distribution.
Continuing the effort to move forward with the project, City staff issued a Request For Proposals (RFP) for the engineering design services related to the 1,2,3-TCP Removal Treatment Plant Project on October 16, 2020. In response to the RFP, the City received four proposals on December 3, 2020. A thorough review of the proposals was performed by a team of City staff looking at experience, qualifications, similar projects performed recently, and references. Based on the overall evaluation of proposals and project teams, staff highly considered Hazen and Sawyer ("Hazen") to have the best combination of experience, staffing and overall approach to the work for the project. The four firms that applied were ranked as follows:
- Hazen and Sawyer
- CivilTec Engineering, Inc.
- TRC Solutions, Inc.
- Hargis + Associates, Inc.
Hazen is a firm that the City recently hired to perform the Water and Recycled Water Master Plan Update project. Staff has direct working experience and familiarity with some of Hazen’s team members that will also be working on the 1,2,3-TCP project. Hazen has a good understanding of the City’s water system from the current and previous work performed in the City. The Project Manager/Engineer is associated with and is respected amongst the various local water agencies and purveyors, such as the Monte Vista Water District (MVWD), Water Facilities Agency (WFA), Chino Basin Desalter Authority (CDA), and Inland Empire Utilities Agency (IEUA). Reference checks with the agencies and municipalities, including City of Chino, confirmed Hazen’s good standing and high recommendations. With these favorable reports from references, staff recommends that the City Council authorize execution of an agreement with Hazen and Sawyer in an amount not-to-exceed $828,579.
To accommodate the proposed GAC treatment plant, the City requires the purchase of 0.37 acres of land from Boys Republic adjacent to the existing Booster 9 site. The site is located at 90 Independent Court, Chino Hills CA 91709 the southwestern corner of the Boys Republic’s approximately 200-acre campus, within Assessor Parcel No. 1022-591-02, as shown on the Exhibit ‘A’ - Legal Description and Sketch. The purchase price agreed to is $237,000 based on an appraisal and subsequent negotiation. There will be non-substantive changes to the attached draft agreement, including finalizing a provision regarding the City's agreement to landscape and maintain an easement area on Boys Republic property. Therefore, City staff is requesting authorization to negotiate these final revisions subject to approval as to form by the City Attorney. On March 2, 2021, the Planning Commission found that the acquisition conformed with the General Plan pursuant to California Government Code Section 65402(a).
A subsequent Zoning Map Amendment will be recommended to change the zoning designation of the site from Private Institutional to Public Institutional.