Behind every faucet you turn on, glass of water you drink, and commode you flush are the fine folks of the Boerne Utilities Water and Wastewater team, led by longtime Treatment Plant Superintendent Roy Burgess.
Burgess has been with the City of Boerne for 38 years with the last 25 of those as superintendent. When he started with the City in 1985 he was one of just three people on the Water and Wastewater staff. Now, he oversees a team of 10, who work every day to provide safe drinking water for Boerne Utilities customers and ensure the proper treatment of all wastewater.
“I started as a mower and grounds man shoveling sludge, just like all my guys,” Burgess said. “Most of my crew started from scratch and worked their way up, and I’m proud of that.”
Burgess and his crew manage the Surface Water Treatment Plant at Boerne City Lake, as well as the City’s other two water sources, which include nine ground wells and the water purchased from Canyon Lake through the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA). On the wastewater side, his crew oversees operations at the Wastewater Treatment Plant on Esser Road and the Wastewater Treatment and Recycling Center on Old San Antonio Road, which also produces reclaimed water for use in residential irrigation.
Over his nearly four decades at Boerne Utilities, Burgess says he is most proud of all the years with no major incidences to the water and wastewater services his team provides, which serve 10,000 customer meters or more than 24,000 people.
“Most people don’t realize how hard it is to keep the water and wastewater systems in compliance. Many take it for granted,” Burgess said. “It’s a really interesting field.”
Through daily testing at the City’s water and wastewater treatment facilities, Burgess and his team have consistently demonstrated their commitment to public health. As result of their work, Boerne’s water system is recognized as a Superior Public Water System by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). The City’s drinking water quality consistently meets or exceeds all federal requirement.
Burgess, who has two daughters and two granddaughters, has called the Boerne area home for more than 40 years.
This profile is part of a series showcasing members of City staff who provide exemplary service. We want to spotlight their hard work and share behind-the-scenes things you might not know.