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Orange Park Clay County 904-264-6444

Jacksonville Beaches Duval County 904-246-3969

Fernandina Nassau County 904-277-3040

Macclenny Baker County 904-259-5091

Palm Coast Flagler County 386-439-5290

Daytona Volusia County 386-253-4911

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Concern about the quality of the nation’s drinking water supplies prompted the U.S. Congress to pass PL 93-523, the “Safe Drinking Water Act”, in 1974. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was directed to establish national standards. The Safe Drinking Water Act has had a significant effect on improvements in both water quality and water supply management. Increasing concerns with toxins in the drinking water led Congress to amend the original Act in 1986, and again in 1996, making it stricter and more inclusive. The Florida Legislature enacted a similar “Safe Drinking Water Act” which is contained in Sections 403.850 – 403.864, Florida Statutes. This statute directs the Department of Environmental Protection to formulate and enforce rules pertaining to Drinking Water. These rules adopt the national primary and secondary drinking water standards of the Federal Government and create additional rules to fulfill state requirements. They are contained in Chapters 62-550, 62-555, and 62-560, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.).

CHAPTER 62-550, F.A.C., Drinking Water Standards, Monitoring, and Reporting, adopts EPA rules and regulates the water produced by public water systems and covers the following topics:

* Glossary of drinking water terms.
* Maximum contaminant limits applied to finished drinking water.
* Monitoring requirements and frequencies water systems must adhere to when testing for contamination.
* Surveillance, record keeping, and reporting required of water systems.
* Forms and instructions for laboratories to use when reporting chemical monitoring results.

Download Chapter 62-550, F.A.C., in Adobe PDF (156K).

CHAPTER 62-555, F.A.C., Permitting and Construction of Public Water Systems, are state rules which apply to water systems. The chapter covers the following:

* Construction, operation, and maintenance standards for public water systems.
* Rules governing general permits for water systems.
* Rules governing construction permits for water systems.
* Treatment and monitoring requirements for water systems which use surface water.
* Forms and instructions for water systems to use.

Download Chapter 62-555, F.A.C., in Adobe PDF.

CHAPTER 62-560, F.A.C., Requirements for Public Water Systems that are out of Compliance, adopts EPA rules on the actions a water system must take when it is not in compliance with the established standards. This chapter covers the following:

* Definitions of violations.
* Provisions governing variances, exemptions, and waivers.
* Best available technology and treatment techniques for use by water systems that are out of compliance.

Download Chapter 62-560, F.A.C., in Adobe PDF.

Download Standard Health Effects Language for Public Notification. The publication is in Adobe PDF.

CHAPTER 62-550.800, F.A.C., Control of Lead and Copper. This rule covers the following requirements:

* In-home tap sampling for large, medium, and small systems.
* Source water and water quality parameters sampling.
* Lead and Copper action levels
* Corrosion Control Treatment.
* Public education and notification

Download 40 CFR 141, Subpart I, October 10, 2007 Edition (290K), in Adobe PDF. This is the official version of the Lead and Copper Rule Short-Term Revisions that was adopted by Florida on October 1, 2010 with a few clarifications as shown in Chapter 62-550.800 F.A.C.

Download a copy of EPA’s Short Term Revisions and Clarifications, Final Rule from the Federal Registe

“ADEQUATE PROTECTION BY TREATMENT” means any one or any combination of the controlled processes of coagulation, sedimentation, absorption, adsorption, filtration, or other processes in addition to disinfection which produce a water that consistently meets the requirements of the standards in Rules 62-550.310 through .410, F.A.C., including processes which are appropriate to the source of supply; systems which are of adequate capacity to meet maximum demands without creating health hazards and which are located, designed, and constructed to eliminate or prevent violations of these rules; and conscientious operation by well-trained and competent personnel who meet the requirements of Chapter 62-16, F.A.C.

“ANNULAR SPACE” means the space between two casings or the space between the outer casing and the wall of the bore hole.

“APPROVED COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH UNIT” means county public health units designated by the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services and approved by the department as having qualified sanitary engineering staffs to perform the duties described in Section 403.862(1)(c), F.S.

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“BEST AVAILABLE TECHNOLOGY” or “BAT” means the best technology, treatment techniques, or other means promulgated by EPA and adopted by the Department. In promulgating BAT the EPA examines the efficacy under field conditions and not solely under laboratory conditions, and takes costs into consideration when determining what technology or treatment is available.

“BOTTLED WATER” means water that is containerized or packaged and offered for human consumption or other consumer usage. (Bottled water is regulated in Florida by the Department of Agriculture.)

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“CASING” means the tubular material used to shut off or exclude a stratum or strata other than the source bed and conduct water from only the source bed to the surface.

“CHECK SAMPLE” means a sample analysis or analyses used to confirm the results of another sample. Each sample for the analysis shall be taken or measured at the same location in the water system as the original sample.

“COAGULATION” means a process using coagulant chemicals and mixing by which colloidal and suspended materials are destabilized and agglomerated into flocs.

“COMMUNITY WATER SYSTEM” means a public water system which serves at least 15 service connections used by year-round residents or regularly serves at least 25 year-round residents.

“COMPLIANCE CYCLE” means the nine-year cycle during which public water systems must monitor. Each compliance cycle consists of three three-year compliance periods. The first compliance cycle begins January 1, 1993 and ends December 31, 2001; the second begins January 1, 2002 and ends December 31, 2010; the third begins January 1, 2011 and ends December 31, 2019.

“COMPLIANCE PERIOD” means a three-year period within a compliance cycle. Each compliance cycle has three three-year compliance periods. Within the first compliance cycle, the first compliance period runs from January 1, 1993 to December 31, 1995; the second from January 1, 1996 to December 31, 1998; the third from January 1, 1999 to December 31, 2001.

“CONFIRMATION SAMPLE” means a sample analysis or analyses taken to verify the results of an original analysis. Each sample for the analysis shall be taken or measured at the same location in the water system as the original sample. The results of the confirmation samples shall be averaged with the original sample to determine compliance.

“CONFLUENT GROWTH” means a continuous bacterial growth covering the entire filtration area of a membrane filter used for coliform detection, or a portion thereof, in which bacterial colonies are not discrete.

“CONTAMINANT” means any physical, chemical, biological, or radiological substance or matter in water.

“CONVENTIONAL FILTRATION TREATMENT” means a series of processes including coagulation, flocculation, sedimentation, and filtration resulting in substantial particulate removal.

“CROSS-CONNECTION” means any physical arrangement whereby a public water supply is connected, directly or indirectly, with any other water supply system, sewer, drain, conduit, pool, storage reservoir, plumbing fixture, or other device which contains or may contain contaminated water, sewage or other waste, or liquid of unknown or unsafe quality which may be capable of imparting contamination to the public water supply as the result of backflow. By-pass arrangements, jumper connections, removable sections, swivel or changeable devices, and other temporary or permanent devices through which or because of which backflow could occur are considered to be cross-connections.

“CT” is the product of “residual disinfectant concentration” (C) in milligrams per liter determined before or at taps providing water for human consumption, and the corresponding “disinfectant contact time” (T) in minutes.

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“DEPARTMENT” means the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Approved County Public Health Units, and, where the context is appropriate, their employees.

“DIATOMACEOUS EARTH FILTRATION” means a process resulting in substantial particulate removal in which a precoat cake of diatomaceous earth filter media is deposited on a support membrane (septum); and, while the water is filtered by passing through the cake on the septum, additional filter media known as body feed is continuously added to the feed water to maintain the permeability of the filter cake.

“DIRECT FILTRATION” means a series of processes including coagulation and filtration but excluding sedimentation resulting in substantial particulate removal.

“DISINFECTANT” means any oxidant, including but not limited to chlorine, chlorine dioxide, chloramines, and ozone added to water in any part of the treatment or distribution process, that is intended to kill or inactivate pathogenic microorganisms.

“DISINFECTANT CONTACT TIME” (“T” in CT calculations) means the time in minutes that it takes for water to move from the point of disinfectant application or the previous point of disinfectant residual measurement to a point before or at the point where residual disinfectant concentration (“C”) is measured.

“DISINFECTION” means a process which inactivates pathogenic organisms in water by chemical oxidants or equivalent agents.

“DOMESTIC OR OTHER NON-DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM PLUMBING PROBLEM” means a coliform contamination problem in a public water system with more than one service connection that is limited to the specific service connection from which the coliform-positive sample was taken.

“DOSE EQUIVALENT” means the product of the absorbed dose from ionizing radiation and such factors as account for differences in biological effectiveness due to the type of radiation and its distribution in the body, specified by the International Commission on Radiological Units and Measurements (ICRU).

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“EXEMPTION” means approval from the Department affording a public water system, existing as of the effective date of these rules, an extended time for compliance with a maximum contaminant level or treatment technique contained in a drinking water standard. An exemption pertains to non-compliance with a maximum contaminant level for reasons other than that instance when application of a generally available treatment method fails to adequately treat the raw water source.

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“FILTRATION” means a process for removing particulate matter from water by passage through porous media.

“FLOCCULATION” means a process to enhance agglomeration or collection of smaller floc particles into larger, more easily settleable particles through gentle stirring by hydraulic or mechanical means.

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“GROSS ALPHA PARTICLE ACTIVITY” means the total radioactivity due to alpha particle emission as inferred from measurements on a dry sample.

“GROSS BETA PARTICLE ACTIVITY” means the total radioactivity due to beta particle emission as inferred from measurements on a dry sample.

“GROUND WATER UNDER THE DIRECT INFLUENCE OF SURFACE WATER” means any water beneath the surface of the ground with: (a) significant occurrence of insects or other macroorganisms, algae, or large-diameter pathogens such as Giardia lamblia or Cryptosporidium, or (b) significant and relatively rapid shifts in water characteristics such as turbidity, temperature, conductivity, or pH which closely correlate to climatological or surface water conditions.

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“HALOGEN” as used in the present context of this rule means one of the chemical elements chlorine or bromine.

“HEALTH HAZARDS” means any conditions, devices, or practices in a water supply system or its operation which create or may create an imminent and substantial danger to the health and well-being of the water consumer.

“HETEROTROPHIC PLATE COUNT,” formerly known as the standard plate count, is a procedure for estimating the number of live heterotrophic bacteria in water. Unless stated otherwise, heterotrophic plate count refers to Method (9215A), the pour plate method, as set forth in Standard Methods for Examination of Water and Wastewater, American Public Health Association, 17th Edition, 1989, pp. 9-58 to 9-60.

“HUMAN CONSUMPTION” means water which is ingested, or absorbed into the body by dermal contact or through inhalation, except water which is used solely for fire or chemical emergencies.

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“INITIAL COMPLIANCE PERIOD” means the first full three-year compliance period that begins January 1, 1993.

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“LEGIONELLA” means a genus of bacteria some species of which have caused a type of pneumonia called Legionnaires Disease.

“LINER” means the tubular material used to seal off caving materials which may be encountered below the bottom end of the well casing. A liner shall not be allowed to overlap or telescope into any portion of the well casing.

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“MAN-MADE BETA PARTICLE AND PHOTON EMITTERS” means all radionuclides emitting beta particles or photons listed in “Maximum Permissible Body Burdens and Maximum Permissible Concentration of Radionuclides in Air or Water for Occupational Exposure,” NBS Handbook 69, except the daughter products of thorium-232, uranium-235, and uranium-238.

“MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVEL” (MCL) means the maximum permissible level of a contaminant in water which is delivered to any user of a public water system.

“MAXIMUM TOTAL TRIHALOMETHANE POTENTIAL” (MTP) means the maximum concentration of total trihalomethanes produced in a given water containing a disinfectant residual after 7 days at a temperature of 25 Degrees Centigrade or above.

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“NEAR THE FIRST SERVICE CONNECTION” means at one of the 20 percent of all service connections in the entire system that are nearest the water supply treatment facility, as measured by water transport time within the distribution system.

“NON-COMMUNITY WATER SYSTEM” means a public water system that is not a community water system. A non-community water system is either a “transient non-community water system” (TWS) or a “non-transient non-community water system” (NTNCWS). (Effective date August 1, 2000.) See the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), title 40, part 141, section 2.

“NON-TRANSIENT NON-COMMUNITY WATER SYSTEM” means a public water system that is not a community water system and that regularly serves at least 25 of the same persons over 6 months per year.

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“PERSON” means an individual, public or private corporation, company, association, partnership, municipality, agency of the state, district, Federal agency, or any other legal entity, or its legal representative, agent, or assigns.

“PICOCURIE (pCi)” means that quantity of radioactive material producing 2.22 nuclear transformations per minute.

“POINT OF DISINFECTANT APPLICATION” is the point where the disinfectant is applied and water downstream of the point is not subject to recontamination by surface water runoff.

“POINT-OF-ENTRY TREATMENT DEVICE” is a treatment device applied to the drinking water entering a house or building in order to reduce contaminants in the drinking water distributed throughout the house or building.

“POINT-OF-USE TREATMENT DEVICE” is a treatment device applied to a single tap used in order to reduce contaminants in drinking water at that location.

“PUBLIC WATER SYSTEM” or “PWS” means a system for the provision to the public of water for human consumption through pipes or other constructed conveyances, if such system has at least fifteen service connections or regularly serves an average of at least twenty-five individuals daily at least 60 days out of the year. Such term includes: any collection, treatment, storage, and distribution facilities under control of the operator of such system and used primarily in connection with such system; and any collection or pretreatment storage facilities not under such control which are used primarily in connection with such system. Such term does not include any “special irrigation district.” A public water system is either a “community water system” or a “non-community water system.” See the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), title 40, part 141, section 2.

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“RECLAIMED WATER” means water that has received at least secondary treatment and is reused after flowing out of a wastewater treatment facility.

“REM” means the unit of dose equivalent from ionizing radiation to the total body or any internal organ or organ system. A “millirem” (mrem) is 1/1000 of a rem.

“REPEAT COMPLIANCE PERIOD” means any subsequent compliance period after the initial compliance period.

“RESIDUAL DISINFECTANT CONCENTRATION” (“C” in CT calculations) means the concentration of disinfectant measured in milligrams per liter in a representative sample of water.

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“SANITARY HAZARD” means a physical condition which involves or affects any part of a drinking water system or the raw water source, and that creates an imminent or potentially serious risk to the health of any person who consumes water from that system.

“SANITARY SURVEY” means an on-site review of the water source, facilities, equipment, operation, and maintenance of a public water system to evaluate the adequacy of such source, facilities, equipment, operation, and maintenance for producing and distributing safe drinking water.

“SEDIMENTATION” means a process for removal of solids before filtration by gravity or separation.

“SLOW SAND FILTRATION” means a process involving passage of raw water through a bed of sand at low velocity (generally less than 0.4 meters per hour) resulting in substantial particulate removal by physical and biological mechanisms.

“STANDARD BACTERIA SAMPLE” means the aliquot of raw or finished drinking water that is examined for the presence of coliform bacteria, and shall consist of: a. For the bacteriological fermentation tube test, five (5) standard portions of either: 1. Ten milliliters (10 ml); 2. or one hundred milliliters (100 ml); b. For the membrane filter technique, not less than one hundred milliliters (100 ml).

“SUPPLIER OF WATER” means any person who owns or operates a public water system.

“SURFACE WATER” means water upon the surface of the earth, whether contained in bounds created naturally or artificially or diffused. Water from natural springs shall be classified as surface water when it exits from the spring onto the earth’s surface.

“SYSTEM WITH A SINGLE SERVICE CONNECTION” means a system which supplies drinking water to consumers via a single service line.

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“TOO NUMEROUS TO COUNT” means that the total number of bacterial colonies exceed 200 on a 47-millimeter diameter membrane filter used for coliform detection.

“TOTAL TRIHALOMETHANES” (TTHM) means the sum of the concentration in milligrams per liter of the trihalomethane compounds: trichloromethane (chloroform), dibromochloromethane, bromodichloromethane, tribromomethane (bromoform), rounded to two significant figures.

“TRANSIENT NON-COMMUNITY WATER SYSTEM” or “TWS” means a non-community water system that does not regularly serve at least 25 of the same persons over six months per year. See the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), title 40, part 141, section 2.

“TREATMENT TECHNIQUE” means the technology, when installed in a public water system, which leads to the reduction of contaminant levels.

“TRIHALOMETHANE” (THM) means one of the family of organic compounds named as derivatives of methane, wherein three of the four hydrogen atoms in methane are each substituted by a halogen atom in the molecular structure.

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“VARIANCE” means approval from the Department affording a public water system an extended time for compliance with a maximum contaminant level or treatment technique contained in a drinking water standard. A variance pertains to non-compliance with a maximum contaminant level due to the inability to meet the maximum contaminant level even when a treatment method has been applied to the raw water source. The non-compliance is due to the quality of the raw water.

“VIRUS” means a virus of fecal origin which is infectious to humans by waterborne transmission.

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“WAIVER” means approval from the Department for elimination of disinfection requirements or certified water plant operator requirements for transient non-community water systems using only ground water not under the direct influence of surface water, or reduction of the monitoring requirements for organic contaminants listed in Rules 62-550.310(2)(a) and (b), F.A.C.

“WATERBORNE DISEASE OUTBREAK” means the occurrence of acute infectious illness, epidemiologically associated with the ingestion of water from a public water system which is deficient in treatment, as determined by the Department.

“WELL” means any excavation that is drilled, cored, bored, washed, driven, dug, jetted, or otherwise constructed when the intended use of such excavation is to conduct ground water from a source bed to the surface, by pumping or natural flow, when ground water from such excavation is used or is to be used for a public water supply system.

Starting in 1996, DEP initiated an effort to re-design its water resource monitoring efforts. The purpose was to create an efficient, multi-resource, comprehensive monitoring network, designed to fulfill many of the Department’s monitoring needs.

This effort, the Integrated Water Resource Monitoring Network (IWRM) Program, is a multi-level or “tiered” monitoring program designed to answer questions about Florida’s water quality at differing scales. The program is supported by several DEP water quality monitoring groups in Tallahassee and in regional (district) offices. In general, Tier I addresses statewide and regional (within Florida) questions, Tier II focuses on basin-specific to waterbody-specific questions, while Tier III answers site-specific questions.

Tier I monitoring is comprised of two monitoring efforts, status monitoring, and trend monitoring, which are both designed to answer state-wide to regional questions. Tier II monitoring includes basin assessments and monitoring required for TMDL (total maximum daily load) development. This monitoring is more localized in nature than that occurring under Tier I monitoring, yet may encompass a broader area than that employed in Tier III. Tier III includes all monitoring tied to regulatory permits issued by DEP and is associated with evaluating the effectiveness of point source discharge reductions, best management practices or TMDLs. The program addresses both surface and ground waters of the state.

IWRM is used to meet Florida’s programmatic and larger scale reporting requirements, including production of the state’s water quality monitoring strategy report (106 report) and the integrated 303(d) / 305(b) report to the EPA, An overview of IWRM Program from 1999-2008 can be found in the state of Florida Water Quality Monitoring Strategy document. A new design was implemented for the Watershed Monitoring Program in 2009 and can be found at Watershed Monitoring Design Document.

Stormwater runoff is generated when precipitation from rain and snowmelt events flows over land or impervious surfaces and does not percolate into the ground. As the runoff flows over the land or impervious surfaces (paved streets, parking lots, and building rooftops), it accumulates debris, chemicals, sediment or other pollutants that could adversely affect water quality if the runoff is discharged untreated. The programs listed below are responsible for the management of stormwater in Florida.
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)

Water pollution degrades surface waters making them unsafe for drinking, fishing, swimming, and other activities. As authorized by the Clean Water Act, the Florida NPDES program controls water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of Florida. Point sources are discrete conveyances such as pipes or man-made ditches. Individual homes that are connected to a municipal system, use a septic system, or do not have a surface discharge do not need an NPDES permit; however, industrial, municipal, and other facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters. Since its introduction in 1972, the NPDES permit program is responsible for significant improvements to our Nation’s water quality… more

Nonpoint Source Management Program

The Nonpoint Source Management Program is responsible for the implementation of the State of Florida’s nonpoint source management programs. These programs are implemented cooperatively by the Department of Environmental Protection, Florida’s water management districts, other state agencies (i.e., Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Department of Health), local governments, and by the public. The goal of these programs is to minimize nonpoint source pollution (“Pointless Personal Pollution”) from new land use activities and to reduce pollution from existing activities… more

Environmental Resource Permit Program (ERP)

The Environmental Resource Permit Program regulates activities involving the alteration of surface water flows. This includes new activities in uplands that generate stormwater runoff from upland construction, as well as dredging and filling in wetlands and other surface waters. Two wetlands regulatory programs exist at the state level: a dredge and fill (wetland resource) permit program (WRP) within the limits of the Northwest Water Management District and an environmental resource permit (ERP) program throughout the rest of the state. Environmental Resource Permit applications are processed by either the Department or one of the state’s water management districts, in accordance with the division of responsibilities specified in operating agreements between the Department and the water management districts. The Environmental Resource Permit Program is in effect throughout the State except for the Florida panhandle (within the limits of the Northwest Florida Water Management District)… more