- Drinking Water Policies: Table of Contents
Listing of Drinking Water Program policies issued since 1987.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-04: Procedures for Use of EPA's Proposed Maximum Contaminant Levels
A uniform set of guidelines for dealing with water supply contaminants with concentrations which exceed an EPA-proposed maximum contaminant level.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-05: Declaration of State of Water Supply Emergency
Administrative procedures for water-supply emergencies.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-06: Boil Water Orders or Do Not Drink Orders
Procedures for issuing Boil Orders or Do Not Drink Orders.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-17: Water Vending Machines
Clarifying the status of water vending machines as public water supplies if they meet the basic criteria detailed in the Massachusetts Drinking Water Regulations, 310 CMR 22.00.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-17a: Water Vending Machine Addendum & Attachment
The process for approving the installation of a water-vending machine.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-18: DEP Sampling & Analysis for Public Water Systems
Public water supplies are required to obtain analytical services from a Massachusetts- or EPA-certified laboratory to conduct tests on water samples. This policy details those circumstances under which MassDEP, through the Wall Experiment Station, will directly provide analytical support to a public water supply.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-25: Items to Consider when Conditioning New Source Approvals
This policy identifies subjects to be covered (if applicable) in the letter granting final approval of a new source.
- Drinking Water Policy 87-27: Procedures Relative to the Detection of Contaminants During the New Source Approval Process
Procedures to be followed if water sampling during the New Source Approval process detects contaminants for which EPA has established a Maximum Contaminant Level.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-01: Trichloroethylene TCE Air Stripper Policy
Limiting the impact of trichloroethylene in the atmosphere by establishing criteria for water supply treatment facility parameters that can allow a TCE air stripper without specific air pollution controls to be approved under 310 CMR 7.02, the Massachusetts Air Pollution Control Regulations.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-03: Interim Wellhead Protection Area
Defining the Interim Wellhead Protection Area around a public water supply.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-06: Estimated Registration Statement
This policy clarifies the difference between estimated and verified registrations under the Water Management Act, and how to verify an estimated registration.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-10: Daily Consumption Per Person
A uniform calculation to determine daily water supply consumption for an existing un-metered public water supply system.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-11: Public Water System Determination
A standard conversion for calculating residential population served when given information on number of bedrooms and/or service connections to determine whether a water system meets the criteria to be defined as a public water system under 310 CMR 22.00.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-12: Procedure for Changing Public Water Supply Classification
Steps to be followed in changing the classification of a public water supply. The Declassification/Reclassification Request Form is found under "Drinking Water Forms" on the MassDEP website.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-14: Secondary Standards Exceedances
Providing a consistent method of utilizing secondary standards for drinking water quality. Secondary standards apply to aesthetic considerations such as taste, color, or odor, which do not present a health risk.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-16: Volatile Organic Compound Sampling: Confirmation Sampling and Discounting Results
The use of confirmation sampling and duplicate sampling when testing for volatile organics in drinking water.
- Drinking Water Policy 88-19: Request for Final Inspection of New or Improved Treatment Facilities
New or substantially-modified public water systems cannot be brought on-line until a final inspection and/or approval, per the Massachusetts Drinking Water Regulations (310 CMR 22.03).
- Drinking Water Policy 88-23: Consecutive Public Water Systems - Bacterial Contamination Validation Sampling
This policy is adopted to provide public water systems and DWP with additional source monitoring data to assist in the determination of cause of and responsibility for bacterial contamination when discovered in a consecutive public water system.
- Drinking Water Policy 89-01: New Product or Technology Review Policy
The Drinking Water Program's review process for drinking-water treatment, storage, or transmittal.
- Drinking Water Policy 89-04: Review of Water Conservation Plans Submitted by Public Water Suppliers for Water Management Permits
Consistent review of water conservation plans submitted by public water suppliers.
- Drinking Water Policy 89-06: Public Notice Requirements - Water Management Act Application
Failure of an applicant to publish a notice, or to notify abutters, within the time allowed in 310 CMR 36.22 may prevent an application from being deemed complete and/or subject the applicant to penalties.
- Drinking Water Policy 90-04: Pilot Study Requirements for Proposed Treatment
Guidance on Departmental criteria for piloting of treatment for removal of primary and secondary constituents from public drinking water supply sources.
- Drinking Water Policy 91-02: Treatment for Radionuclide Removal
Procedures for processing requests for approval of treatment for the removal of radionuclides from drinking water.
- Drinking Water Policy 91-05: Follow-up Action for Coliform positive Results from a Single Routine Sampling Point
Uniform procedures to be followed after coliform positive results are shown to be an isolated event at a single routine sampling location.
- Drinking Water Policy 91-06: Variances from the Total Coliform Rule
This policy is adopted to establish criteria to be used in evaluating requests from variances from the Total Coliform Rule.
- Drinking Water Policy 91-07: Acceptability of Results from Radiological Laboratories Certified Outside Massachusetts
Uniform criteria for acceptability of radiochemical analyses submitted to MassDEP by Massachusetts public water systems.
- Drinking Water Policy 91-09: Use of Bottled Water by Public Water Suppliers
If a system provides water for any of the normal uses such as bathing, showering, cooking, dishwashing and oral hygiene, it is providing water for human consumption and is a public water system subject to regulations under the SDWA and the state Drinking Water regulations.
- Bottled Water: US EPA Definition of Human Consumption
US EPA Memorandum clarifying the system status of a non-transient non-community water system which supplies piped water for lavatories and sinks but bottled water for human consumption.
- Drinking Water Policy 92-05: Procedure for Determining the Activity Type and Status of a Drinking Water Source
Guidance in interpreting the source activity type, monitoring requirements and special permit requirements of public drinking water sources as defined in 310 CMR 22.02.
- Drinking Water Policy 92-07: Bulk Water Suppliers - Sampling Requirements and Transport Responsibility
Bulk water suppliers who have received MassDEP approval as public water sources must meet minimum drinking water standards in accordance with 310 CMR 22.00, the Massachusetts Drinking Water Regulations. This policy explains the responsibilities involved. Revised November 2014.
- Drinking Water Policy 93-01a: Requirement for Disinfection with Water Supply Treatment
Clarifying the requirement for “post disinfection” after treatment components on public water system groundwater sources, utilizing specific treatment systems.
- Drinking Water Policy 93-02: Operation and Maintenance Manuals
General guidance for the development of operations and maintenance manuals for new or rehabilitated water treatment facilities.
- Drinking Water Policy 94-02: Determination of Public or Private Water System Type for Establishments Serving Food
Guidance in determining the drinking-water system type for systems serving food to the public as either public or private systems.
- Drinking Water Policy 94-03: Implementation of Zone I Requirements
Guidance on the implementation of the Zone I requirements established under the Massachusetts Drinking Water Regulations, 310 CMR 22.21, requiring public water systems to own or control the Zone I of their wells and to limit activities in the Zone I to those directly related to the provision of the water supply or to activities that will have no significant adverse impact on drinking water quality.
- 95-04: PWS Control of Zone I Within Publicly Owned Lands
This Policy has been incorporated into Policy 94-03, above.
- Drinking Water Policy 96-02: Safe Drinking Water Act Assessment Billing and Collection Policy
This policy describes the standard procedures for billing and collection of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act assessment established by M.G.L. c.21A, s.18A, and 310 CMR 21.00.
- Drinking Water Policy 97-01: Zone II Status
Circumstances under which the Drinking Water Program will respond to requests from other DEP programs and the public to evaluate the status of approved Zone IIs and remove no longer viable Zone IIs from the GIS Zone II data layer.
- Drinking Water Policy 03-1: Review of Sewer Line/Water Supply Protection
Protecting existing and potential drinking water supplies from potentially negative effects of leaking sewer lines.
- Drinking Water Policy 06-01: Massachusetts Contract Operator Requirements
Establishing industry-wide minimum standards for the operation of public water systems by Massachusetts certified contract operators. Rev. December 2014.
- Drinking Water Policy 08-01: Substantial Modifications To A Public Water System That Require A Permit
Identifying which treatment or distribution system modifications are "substantial modifications" to a public water system and therefore require prior written approval from MassDEP in accordance with 310 CMR 22.04. Rev. March 2008.
- Drinking Water Policy 08-02: Actions to Protect Health in the Period Between Federal Rule Promulgation And State Promulgation
Documenting MassDEP's practice for ensuring public health protection during the period between the promulgation of a final U.S. EPA National Primary Drinking Water Regulation and the promulgation of a corresponding MassDEP regulation.
- Drinking Water Policy 09-02: Pipe Bursting of Potable Water Mains Using Pre- and Post-Chlorinated HDPE Pipe
MassDEP allows public water systems to use the HDPE pipe bursting method for water-main rehabilitation except for asbestos pipe replacement, subject to the conditions outlined in this policy.
- Drinking Water Policy 11-01: Wind and Solar Energy Projects Proposed in Zone I
Conditions for approval of wind- and solar-energy projects proposed to be constructed within the Zone I of a public water supply.
Q&A: floating solar-array projects on public water supply reservoirs
See also Q&A: floating solar-array projects in wetlands
- Drinking Water Policy 2019-01: Antenna Policy Guidelines
Public water systems are required to review all proposals for construction of antennas or appurtenances to be attached to drinking water storage tanks, and to provide written certification to MassDEP indicating that the proposed activity will not harm the water supply.
Drinking Water Supply Storage Tank Attachment Approval Certification Form
- Standards & Guidelines for Contaminants in Massachusetts Drinking Water
A compendium of guidance values for evaluating contaminants in Massachusetts drinking water. Guidance values determine the level at which corrective action becomes necessary. Updated June 2017.
- Guidelines for Public Water Systems
These documents are intended to provide guidance to public water suppliers and their employees, MassDEP staff, and the public, on all regulatory and procedural aspects of maintaining a safe drinking water supply.
- Bottled Water Memorandum of Understanding between MassDEP and the Department of Public Health
Review, approval and monitoring of source water for bottled water and carbonated nonalcoholic beverages.
- DWP's Use of MCLs, Office of Research and Standards Drinking Water Guidelines for Drinking Water (ORSGs) and US EPA Health Advisory (HA) Levels
Discusses the role of Office of Research and Standards Drinking Water Guidelines and US EPA Health Advisory Levels when a contaminant is detected in drinking water. Revised June 6, 2017.
- Wind and Solar Energy Projects on Public Water Supply Lands
This guideline applies to public water suppliers and their representatives requesting written approval from MassDEP to install wind and solar energy projects on lands held by public water systems for drinking water purposes.
- Municipal Compliance Fact Sheet: Drinking Water
As a senior municipal official representing the interests of your community, you should be aware that the federal Safe Drinking Water Act and the Massachusetts Drinking Water Regulations apply to all public water systems
- Water Management Program: Source Approval Guidance
Information for Public Water Suppliers from the MassDEP Water Management Act Program regarding the siting of a new source of drinking water or the expansion of an existing source.
- Fireworks Best Environmental Management Practices
The purpose of this memorandum is to provide guidance on perchlorate-containing fireworks to prevent contamination of drinking water supplies from this potential source.
- Pipe Bursting of Potable Water Mains
Pipe replacement using pre-chlorinated high-density polyethylene pipe.
- Protocol for chlorine-dioxide shock treatment at healthcare facilities on a public water system
Procedure for healthcare facilities seeking to use chlorine dioxide shock treatment to control pathogens.
Legislation allowing sub-metering
In December 2004, Chapter 417 of the Acts of 2004, An Act Authorizing Water Sub-Metering in Residential Tenancies, was signed into law and became effective March 16, 2005. The new law allows landlords to install sub-meters for residential tenants and to bill tenants for water and sewer use. MassDEP supports sub-metering as a means to promote water conservation.
While the new law does not directly affect public water suppliers, systems should be aware of it and may receive calls regarding meter installation and bill payment. Landlords should be reminded that they are still responsible for payment of the water and sewer bills. The master water meter at any building remains under the jurisdiction of the public water supplier. Water suppliers should also work closely with local plumbing inspectors to insure installations meet all legal requirements.
- Testing Requirements for Public Water Systems - Summary
Summary of drinking-water testing requirements and parameters, applicable to all public water systems in Massachusetts. Rev. October 2019.
- Uranium Activity to Mass Conversion Factor Guideline for Use in Drinking Water Compliance Monitoring and Risk Assessment
Parameters for screening for uranium in drinking water.
- Water Commissioners and Local Boards: Roles and Responsibilities for Drinking Water Compliance and Coordination
The purpose of this guide is to outline the specific state legal authorities granted to water commissioners, cities and towns, police, and boards of health who all play roles in ensuring the safety of our drinking water.
- Water District Organizational Checklist
A list of organizational documents a water district should have on file.
- Water Resource Management Planning Guidance Document
This guidance is intended to explain the types of water management planning reports towns and communities can use when approaching their particular wastewater, drinking water and stormwater issues.