SISTER BAY WATER & SEWER UTILITY
In 1968 the Village of Sister Bay, led by
Village President Bernie Hagedorn, began to look to the future
to protect the environment and preserve the Village's water
resources. The next Village President, "Big Dave" Anderson
succeeded in acquiring the necessary grants and approvals, and
eventually Village officials decided to move forward with the
construction of a sewer and water system. That system was
dedicated on October 14, 1973. Liberty Grove Sanitary District
#1 came on line in 1979.
The Sister Bay
Wastewater Treatment Plant, which serves both the Village of
Sister Bay and portions of the Town of Liberty Grove, is located
at 2124 Autumn Court in the Village of Sister Bay. To reach the
employees at the plant please call 920-854-2246.
The Sister Bay sanitary sewer collection
system is a combination of gravity sewers, lift stations, and
force mains. Wastewater is collected in the system and conveyed
through piping to the Wastewater Treatment Plant. The existing
service area of the collection system is approximately 1,200
acres in size, and serves approximately 930
connections/customers within the Village and/or the boundaries
of Liberty Grove Sanitary District #1. Those persons whose
properties are not connected to the sewer system have private
sewage disposal systems or holding tanks.
The water system facilities operated and
maintained by the Sister Bay Water Utility include three
groundwater wells and pump stations, two elevated water storage
tanks, four booster pumps, seven pressure reducing stations,
water system controls which are located in the Wastewater
Treatment Plant, and a network of transmission and distribution
Each year testing is done to ensure the quality of water
delivered. To access the most recent test results please click
on the following hyperlink:
Link to Consumer Confidence
Village officials are very committed to protection of the
environment and preservation of the water resources, and,
therefore, they have directed that a Comprehensive Utilities
Plan, which fully addresses existing and future sewer and water
needs, as well as stormwater management over a planning period
extending to the year 2025, be prepared. The planning approach
used for the study began with the identification of the existing
planning area conditions, as well as an evaluation of projected
future service area needs and characteristics, and a number of
Comprehensive Utilities Plan Advisory Committee meetings have
been conducted. A draft of the plan and related materials can be
accessed by clicking on the following hyperlink:
Link to Draft of Comprehensive Utilities Plan and Related
STAFF MEMBERS WHO MAKE THE UTILITIES
WORK. . .
water plays a huge role in the
attractiveness of Sister Bay as a
place to live or to visit, and we'd
like to introduce you to the staff
make the system work.
Manager is Steve Jacobson, who, with
more than twenty-five years on the
job, is senior man.
life-long resident of Northern Door,
finds satisfaction in serving his
community. "Good water is a
necessity," he says, and it pleases
me to know that I have a hand in
giving that to my home town."
seniority is Mike Schell, the Field
Operations Supervisor, who began
working for Sister Bay Utilities in
1990. Schell was born and raised in
Sturgeon Bay but now lives in
What is it about the area that keeps him here?
"The people and the outdoor life, plus I like the
job." Schell says, "We do so many different
tasks— I'd be bored stiff if I had to work in a
factory doing the same thing hour after hour, all
The job certainly presents the staff with
variety. They begin each day in a neat,
well-appointed chemistry lab, testing the purity
of Sister Bay's water. That done, they follow an
inspection routine that has them looking at each
of the three wells and pumping stations, the
lift stations, and the pressure-reducing
stations, and then it's on to paper work, and
paper work, and more paper work. . .
In their spare time they check the water
pressure in each of Sister Bay's fire hydrants.
By the way, all of that is only half the job -
The same crew runs the Sewer Utility, which
receives and treats the waste water from the
Village and most of Liberty Grove.
third man on the Utilities crew is
Bob Lang, a Northern Door native.
Jacobson and Schell are licensed Water
Works/Wastewater Operators and Lang is a licensed Water Works Operator,
designations that require many hours of
formal instruction and years of experience.
In addition, each of them must keep abreast of
developments in the field with thirteen hours of
formal instruction every three years. When asked
about these training requirements Lang
responded, "It's a
legal requirement that Utilities employees be licensed—and
it's definitely necessary. After all, we are
dealing with the health of our community."
Patrick Johnson, who
resides in the Village, was hired as a Utility Worker
in February of 2008, and he assists Jacobson,
Schell and Lang with their daily duties. Patrick
is working toward obtaining his Water Works
Operator certification, and when asked how he
likes his job so far he responded, "I really
enjoy coming into work everyday. I also like the
diversity of the job and the fact that my work
place is so close to home."
All of this job and
life satisfaction seems unreal," one might
comment. "Isn't there something about working in
the Sister Bay Utilities Department that you
dislike?". Mike and Bob say, with one voice,
"When the phone rings at 3:00 A.M., on a cold
winter night…." One of the team is on call all
of the time. "It has to be that way," they
explain. "The community depends on the water we
supply. Some things need to be fixed now, not
tomorrow or next Tuesday. Most often the Duty
Man can handle the glitches, but if the need
arises, we all arise."
Since October of 2008 our Utility Clerk has been
Martha Baker. Utility bill payments should be
the Administration Building located at 2383 Maple Drive.
Baker is responsible for utility billing,
collections and correspondence. Quarterly
billings for sewer and water services are mailed
out during the second week of the month
following the end of the calendar quarter.
Payments are due on the 30th of that month,
(January, April, July and October). If you have
any questions regarding your Utility bills please
call Martha at 920-854-4118.
Her e-mail address is
Serious though the work may be,
there have been times…. For example, Jacobson, who has a reputation for
practical jokes, heard his phone ring one night, and a mysterious voice told him
that there was a boat adrift in the sewage pond—an open air body of water in
which wastewater is aerated. Jacobson conscientiously climbed out of bed and set
out to rescue the boat from a sea upon which it had no business sailing—only to
find that it was his own boat.