Five finalists have been announced in the Washington-based U.S. Conference of Mayors' (USCM) 2011 Best Tasting City Water in America contest. The finalist cities, selected during the preliminary round of competition held at USCM's headquarters, will advance to USCM's Annual Meeting in Baltimore from June 17-20, where a winner will be selected.

The five cities are: Albany, N.Y.; Denton, Texas; Racine, Wis.; Rochester, N.Y.; and Pembroke Pines, Fla. Mayors attending the annual meeting will serve as judges for the final round of competition, and the winning city will be announced on Monday, June 20. The winner will receive a cash award of $15,000, which can be used to publicize the outstanding quality of its water to the public and the successful efforts of that city's water department to produce it.

USCM conducts the water taste test to bring attention to the increasing amount of money that local governments spend for water and sewer services and infrastructure. "American cities are world leaders in providing high-quality water to protect public health, plentiful water supplies for public safety and fire protection, and the water necessary to run the nation's economy," USCM CEO and Executive Director Tom Cochran said in a statement. "There is nowhere else on this globe where can you get safer tap water than in this country."

Voorhees, N. J.-based American Water co-sponsors the competition. Download USCM's entire announcement of the five
2011 Best Tasting City Water in America contest finalists.

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