Hamilton’s Public Works awarded for excellency in safety, integrity and more

The city of Hamilton is not a stranger to receiving awards, but leaders always celebrate the accomplishments because it means the service provided to its residents is often second to none ― or at least very few.

Hamilton’s Public Works Dept. was recently awarded the System Operational Achievement Recognition (SOAR) from the American Public Gas Association. Out of 750 members, the city of Hamilton was one of 25 to be recognized, reciting the SOAR level Silver by peers on the APGA Operations and Safety Committee. The selection was based on demonstrated excellence in the four areas of system integrity, system improvement, employee safety and workforce development.

“The city of Hamilton consistently demonstrates a commitment to providing natural gas safely and efficiently to all those in their community and as such, serves as a model for all other natural gas utilities in the country,” said APGA President and CEO Dave Schryver.

Hamilton’s natural gas system is the largest municipal natural gas distribution system in the state of Ohio, and the system serves approximately 23,500 customers through 275-plus miles of natural gas lines.

The 25 SOAR recipients will be recognized at the APGA annual conference in July.

Last month, the city received a first-time recognition, receiving Government Fleet Magazine’s Leading Fleets Award for 2023

The city was one of a few dozen local governments to receive a certificate of achievement for being one of Government Fleet Magazine’s Leading Fleets for 2023. The 50 Leading Fleets were recognized at the annual Government Fleet Expo and Conference in May.

“In my opinion, this achievement obtained by our fleet department ― which is a national recognition ― illustrates the value of the incredible initiatives of each individual technician, their supervisory leadership of that department, continuous process improvement, and our drive for excellence,” said Hamilton Public Works Director Jim Williams.

“Our citizens and businesses should be proud to know that the backbone of all of our city services rests on the reliability of our fleet, which consists of every vehicular and non-vehicular asset to serve their needs.”

There are more than 800 assets managed by public works, including, but not limited to, police cruisers, fire department engines and ambulances, utility vehicles, heavy construction vehicles, street sweepers and mowers.

These two honors were followed by the city receiving in April a redevelopment award from the Ohio City/County Management Association. The honor was for the work done in support of the Spooky Nook project, a complex that features indoor and outdoor sports facilities, as well as a fitness center, convention center, hotel and other amenities.

Before Spooky Nook began opening in 2022, it had served as a catalyst for reinvestment efforts as there were many small businesses opening in anticipation. In fact, more than 90 new businesses opened or expanded within the city, collectively investing in more than $390 million within the city.

“Seeing new life come to this industrial site has been amazing,” said Jody Gunderson, Hamilton’s director of Economic Development. “This project will continue to drive investment and strengthen our community with the influx of outside spending.”

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