Scott Schultz, a 27-year employee of the Village of Archbold, has become one of a very select group of Ohioans.
He has received a State of Ohio Class IV water treatment plant operator license.
Class IV licenses are only held by about 150 Ohio residents. The Village of Archbold now has four: Schultz; Dennis Howell, village administrator; Rick Schantz, water plant superintendent; and Jeff Neuenschwander, another water department worker.
Ohio rates water treatment plants on a class system. The smallest are Class I; the largest are Class IV. Archbold’s plant is a Class IV, the same as Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati.
To be a superintendent at a Class IV plant, a person must have a Class IV license.
To be a Class IV operator, a worker must have held a Class III license for three years, and have been a supervisor for two years.
Schultz said village offi- cials created a supervisory position for him so he could qualify for the top license.
There is no “test” for the Class IV license. Instead, Schultz said he had to write a thesis on 12 topics, ranging from experience, administration, and budget, to safety programs, research, and design.
Schultz submitted his thesis for the first time in June 2009. It was 172 pages.
The thesis goes to the 10- member Ohio Environmental Protection Agency board. Four board members from the water treatment-side read the thesis, then accept the thesis or ask for more information.
Schultz’s thesis came back with a request for more information. He submitted it a second time, in April. It was 272 pages.
The OEPA accepted the thesis and granted a Class IV license.
“For anyone who gets one (a Class IV license), it’s a huge accomplishment,” Schultz said.
He said without the cooperation of village administration and Archbold Village Council, he would have never had the opportunity to go for the top license.
“I can’t stress that enough,” he said.
“Ohio (water plant) licensing is some of the toughest in the nation. You can go about anywhere in the country, and they will accept your license,” Schultz said.
Now that he has the top license, “there are no more tests to take,” he said. –David