FRWA eNews
September 26 , 2019
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EPA announces:
They will allow electronic delivery of Tier 2 and Tier 3 Public Notices!
Great News! NRWA regulatory committee has been trying for 2 years to get EPA to approve delivery of Tier 2 and 3 (Non Acute) Public Notices to customers by electronic means like you can deliver CCR.  Remember, former Congressman Bill Young from Florida got the CCR changes to save systems money from mailing.  We have been trying to save systems in other ways for the more modern and cheaper delivery methods for other customer notices.

A report issued by the Office of the Inspector General noted that "EPA Must Improve Oversight of Notice to the Public on Drinking Water Risks to Better Protect Human Health" and that "Without reliable information about drinking water, consumers cannot make informed health decisions and the EPA cannot provide effective oversight."

In an excerpt from the report EPA found that "Primacy agencies have the responsibility to oversee whether public water systems meet federal requirements, including notifying consumers of certain situations regarding their drinking water. We found that some primacy agencies do not consistently fulfill their responsibility to enforce drinking water public notice requirements. Specifically, some primacy agencies do not consistently record violations, nor do they track the need for and issuance of public notices. In addition, the EPA's protocol for assessing primacy agency oversight does not fully cover all public notice requirements. As a result, not all primacy agencies know whether public water systems under their supervision appropriately notify consumers about drinking water problems, and the EPA and primacy agencies do not hold all public water systems to the same compliance standards.

The EPA does not have complete and nationally consistent information about public water systems' compliance with public notice requirements because primacy agencies do not use consistent methods to identify problems with public notice or record violations in the national drinking water database. As a result, the EPA cannot fully monitor compliance and oversee the implementation of this important part of the drinking water program.

Additionally, the EPA's public notice guidance documents to primacy agencies and public water systems are inconsistent with regulations and out of date. Consequently, primacy agencies lack accurate guidance on their oversight responsibilities. Public water systems also lack guidance about current, relevant tools to provide effective public notices and may miss opportunities to efficiently inform consumers about drinking water problems."

The report made recommendations that include the EPA "require primacy agencies to comply with oversight requirements related to public notice and to follow data reporting requirements. They also recommended that the agency update public notice guidance, define the acceptable methods and conditions under which notices can be delivered electronically, and improve public notice violation information in the national drinking water database."

'Worried' House Democrats Step Up Push For Superfund PFAS Measure
"Worried" House Democrats are stepping up their push for defense bill conferees to preserve their amendment requiring EPA to list per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) as "hazardous substances" under the Superfund law in the face of opposition from Senate environment committee Chairman John Barrasso (R-WY).

During a Sept. 24 press conference with environmental groups, three lawmakers championed the House bill's -- to include the House measure that requires EPA within ovarious PFAS provisions, but in particular sought to make the case for conferees -- who are currently working on the final bill ne year to designate all PFAS as hazardous substances under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation & Liability Act (CERCLA).

Rep. Andy Levin (D-MI) told reporters that support for the PFAS measures is broad, noting a Sept. 3 letter from a bipartisan group of 162 House lawmakers urging the conferees to back the provisions. more
National News
USDA Invests in Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Improvements in 25 States U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Under Secretary of Rural Development Donald "DJ" LaVoy today announced that USDA is investing $144 million t improve rural water infrastructure in 25 states. more

Hurricane season's final months could be very active. Here's why After a sluggish start, the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season is heating up. And experts see signs we could be facing an uptick in tropical storm activity during the next two weeks and even into October and November.  more

AWWA updates its cybersecurity guidance and tools Cybersecurity is the top threat facing business and critical infrastructure in the United States, according to reports and testimony from the Director of National Intelligence, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Homeland Security.  more

Reduce, reuse, recycle: The future of phosphorus When Hennig Brandt discovered the element phosphorus in 1669, it was a mistake. He was really looking for gold.   more
State News
South Florida, St. Johns River water management districts approve new property tax rates | TCPalm In separate actions Tuesday, the South Florida and St. Johns River water management district boards approved new property tax rates for fiscal year 2019-20. more

Hernando County approves higher water and sewer rates | Tampa Bay Times County utilities officials identify $147 million in expansion and improvement projects over the next five years. more

FDEP gives OUA $6 million grant | Okeechobee News Good news from the Okeechobee Utility Authority: OUA has received a $6 million grant from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. more

GRU contains 2,500-gallon wastewater spill | Gainesville Sun About 2,500 gallons of wastewater was released into a dry retention basin after a driver likely hit an air release valve on a Gainesville Regional Utilities force main Saturday, a state environmental protection notice said. more

Opinion: Editorial: DeSantis making good on his promises for Florida's water resources | Palm Beach Post Just two days after his swearing-in last January, Florida's new governor, Ron DeSantis shook things up -- in a good way -- by announcing sweeping plans for the environment. more

Repairs to Panama City sewage and water lines cost millions | Key West Citizen  The biggest city devastated by Hurricane Michael last fall has had a recent series of sewage leaks, and local officials say it will cost more than $200 million to repair its sewage and water systems. more

Century Sewer Plant Needs Biosolid Removal; Filters Are Out Of Service | North Escambia  According to town documents, the level of biosolids and sewage sludge are too high, and the town's current disposal method using drying bed is inadequate to remedy the problem. more
This Week in Water History
LEAD REGULATION

September 24, 1986: New York Times headline-New Rules Limit Lead In Water Supply Pipes. "The Environmental Protection Agency today announced new limits on the use of lead in piping systems for public drinking water supplies.

The limits, authorized by amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974, affect construction of new homes and other buildings, repairs on existing homes that get their water from public systems and modifications to the systems themselves, according to the E.P.A.

The rules ban the use of solder containing more than two-tenths of 1 percent of lead and the use of pipes and fittings with more than 8 percent lead content."

For more articles on what went on this week in water history, click here
Florida Rural Water Association |   frwa@frwa.net | http://www.frwa.net
2970 Wellington Circle
Tallahassee FL 32309
850.668.2746