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Neighbors Helping Neighbors

In any business that provides services or products, a well-defined plan of identifying

segments of the buying community that best fit the offerings of the company are essential. R.C. Worst & Co. has continued to reevaluate its marketing and sales plans to meet the most current needs of existing and potential customer bases as buying demands change. But, some things never change for quality, long-standing service and sales institutions such as R.C. Worst & Co. One of the constants of this 60 year old, third generation owned business is a desire to meet difficult situations head on and strive to find solutions that will benefit the customer.

Recently, such an opportunity arose for R. C. Worst & Co. with a local, North Idaho municipality, City of Fernan Lake Village. A long standing relationship between R.C. Worst & Co. and Fernan Lake Village helped open a door of creativity for Worst to assemble a set of solutions for their valued customer. With an aging wastewater collection system in need of updating, Fernan Lake Village looked to R. C. Worst & Co. for some immediate answers in addressing much needed improvements to a portion of the 38 collection lift stations the city has in place to serve their citizens. Knowing full well that all 38 lift stations were in need of new pumps, control panels and guide rails, Fernan Lake Village also knew that the city’s coffers would only allow the repair of 10 of those stations in 2013 and would have to address the remaining 28 stations on an incremental basis over several years. What ultimately occurred was the creation of a lease/purchase plan for Fernan Lake Village that will allow all 38 lift stations to be upgraded within a few months rather than many years.

As many top tier companies know, there are times when immediate need and circumstances create opportunities to demonstrate greatness and commitment to their customers. The mayor of Fernan Lake Village, Richard Jurvelin, provided praise for the outcome of a wonderfully crafted project. “It was a great effort by the city, our engineer and Worst”, commented Jurvelin. “I have to include Councilman Pete Job for his contributions to making this happen and certainly a big thanks to our citizens in that they understood a $5 increase in monthly fees would have to occur for this significant project to move forward. Their overall willingness to participate in the upgrade costs sealed the deal.”

R. C. Worst & Co. technicians Jake Clark and Joe Follini hard at work on control panel install.

A key player in his contribution to thinking outside of the traditional financing box for the City of Fernan Lake Village was Jim Coleman of Coleman Engineering. A civil engineering firm based in Hayden Idaho, Coleman Engineering is contracted with Fernan Lake Village and is relied upon by the city to perform typical engineering analysis, guidance and expertise. Typical tasks for engineering firms for sure, but Coleman’s contribution to this particular project was beyond normal and typical. “An RFP was sent out for the system replacement and upgrade to occur over a four to five year period of time”, said Coleman. “R.C. Worst & Co. submitted the best proposal based on value for the project including very competitive pricing which allowed the City to accelerate the replacement program.” Coleman also gave a tip of the hat to R. C. Worst & Co. for its 38 years of maintenance work to the existing system that allowed long term value for the initial investment made by Fernan Lake Village. “It is a tribute to the maintenance work performed by Worst that the system has performed adequately for 38 years”, Coleman added.

Scott Jessick, Sales Manager for RCW is hopeful that all 38 lift stations will be completed with the necessary equipment replacement by the end of June, 2013. In addition to collaborative financing options related to this project, there were also creative equipment applications as well. For the first time, RCW used Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) motors for the project. With the VFD application, Worst was able to create a situation where the operation of the stations with 3-phase motors created heightened efficiency and torque even though 3-phase electricity was not available at the stations. In doing so, R. C. Worst & Co. contributed to the ongoing efficiency of operations for the City of Fernan Lake Village creating reduced, long term costs.

“Jessick’s proposal of a lease/purchase agreement to the City allowing for all the lift station replacements to occur in a one-year period of time created a huge advantage for the City”, commented Coleman. Mayor Jurvelin had similar praise for Worst. “Our original plan was to upgrade the system over 10 years. Being a small town, we couldn’t qualify for any grant money to do it any other way. Until our city Attorney Bill Appleton joined forces with Jim Coleman and Scott Jessick and put their heads together, that is the scenario we were stuck with”, said Jurvelin.

In the end, this team effort of City personnel, Coleman Engineering and R.C. Worst & Co. found a way through determined efforts to meet the needs of this small town in North Idaho. Thinking collaboratively outside of the box, the City of Fernan Lake Village will have a dependable, wastewater collection system for many years to come. It is amazing what can be accomplished when all parties involved are pulling on the rope at the same time and in the same direction.