Members of Olivenhain Municipal Water District’s Board of Directors were recognized on Wednesday evening by the Special District Leadership Foundation, which presented OMWD with its second Districts of Distinction award.

The award, presented at the California Special Districts Association Annual Conference in Monterey, highlights OMWD’s achievements in the areas of governance, transparency, finances, and board conduct. OMWD board members Edmund Sprague, Jerry Varty, and Mark Muir accepted the award on OMWD’s behalf.

“Ever since the Bell scandal last year, local government in California has found itself under a lot of scrutiny,” said Director Sprague, president of OMWD’s Board of Directors. “In many cases, even agencies that are strongly committed to upholding the public’s trust have been considered guilty by association. The Districts of Distinction accreditation, which is not easy to achieve, helps us to convey to the public that OMWD is one of the good guys that is committed to transparency and good governance.”

The District of Distinction honor, among the most prestigious local government awards in California, validates OMWD’s commitment to ethical and sound operating practices. OMWD was originally certified as a District of Distinction in 2009, and this status is carefully reviewed by the Special District Leadership Foundation biannually to ensure that financial audits, policies and procedures, and training received by directors and executive staff are in line with stringent program standards.

Olivenhain Municipal Water District has provided water, wastewater services, recycled water, hydroelectricity and operation of the Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve since its creation in 1959. OMWD currently serves approximately 68,000 customers over 48 square miles in northern San Diego County.

Originally the eleventh District of Distinction, OMWD is currently one of only 15 Districts of Distinction statewide.