42 U.S. Code § 300j–14 - Source water petition program

(a) Petition program
(1) In general
(A) Establishment
A State may establish a program under which an owner or operator of a community water system in the State, or a municipal or local government or political subdivision of a State, may submit a source water quality protection partnership petition to the State requesting that the State assist in the local development of a voluntary, incentive-based partnership, among the owner, operator, or government and other persons likely to be affected by the recommendations of the partnership, to—
(i) reduce the presence in drinking water of contaminants that may be addressed by a petition by considering the origins of the contaminants, including to the maximum extent practicable the specific activities that affect the drinking water supply of a community;
(ii) obtain financial or technical assistance necessary to facilitate establishment of a partnership, or to develop and implement recommendations of a partnership for the protection of source water to assist in the provision of drinking water that complies with national primary drinking water regulations with respect to contaminants addressed by a petition; and
(iii) develop recommendations regarding voluntary and incentive-based strategies for the long-term protection of the source water of community water systems.
(B) Funding
Each State may—
(i) use funds set aside pursuant to section 300j–12 (k)(1)(A)(iii) of this title by the State to carry out a program described in subparagraph (A), including assistance to voluntary local partnerships for the development and implementation of partnership recommendations for the protection of source water such as source water quality assessment, contingency plans, and demonstration projects for partners within a source water area delineated under section 300j–13 (a) of this title; and
(ii) provide assistance in response to a petition submitted under this subsection using funds referred to in subsection (b)(2)(B) of this section.
(2) Objectives
The objectives of a petition submitted under this subsection shall be to—
(A) facilitate the local development of voluntary, incentive-based partnerships among owners and operators of community water systems, governments, and other persons in source water areas; and
(B) obtain assistance from the State in identifying resources which are available to implement the recommendations of the partnerships to address the origins of drinking water contaminants that may be addressed by a petition (including to the maximum extent practicable the specific activities contributing to the presence of the contaminants) that affect the drinking water supply of a community.
(3) Contaminants addressed by a petition
A petition submitted to a State under this subsection may address only those contaminants—
(A) that are pathogenic organisms for which a national primary drinking water regulation has been established or is required under section 300g–1 of this title; or
(B) for which a national primary drinking water regulation has been promulgated or proposed and that are detected by adequate monitoring methods in the source water at the intake structure or in any collection, treatment, storage, or distribution facilities by the community water systems at levels—
(i) above the maximum contaminant level; or
(ii) that are not reliably and consistently below the maximum contaminant level.
(4) Contents
A petition submitted under this subsection shall, at a minimum—
(A) include a delineation of the source water area in the State that is the subject of the petition;
(B) identify, to the maximum extent practicable, the origins of the drinking water contaminants that may be addressed by a petition (including to the maximum extent practicable the specific activities contributing to the presence of the contaminants) in the source water area delineated under section 300j–13 of this title;
(C) identify any deficiencies in information that will impair the development of recommendations by the voluntary local partnership to address drinking water contaminants that may be addressed by a petition;
(D) specify the efforts made to establish the voluntary local partnership and obtain the participation of—
(i) the municipal or local government or other political subdivision of the State with jurisdiction over the source water area delineated under section 300j–13 of this title; and
(ii) each person in the source water area delineated under section 300j–13 of this title—
(I) who is likely to be affected by recommendations of the voluntary local partnership; and
(II) whose participation is essential to the success of the partnership;
(E) outline how the voluntary local partnership has or will, during development and implementation of recommendations of the voluntary local partnership, identify, recognize and take into account any voluntary or other activities already being undertaken by persons in the source water area delineated under section 300j–13 of this title under Federal or State law to reduce the likelihood that contaminants will occur in drinking water at levels of public health concern; and
(F) specify the technical, financial, or other assistance that the voluntary local partnership requests of the State to develop the partnership or to implement recommendations of the partnership.
(b) Approval or disapproval of petitions
(1) In general
After providing notice and an opportunity for public comment on a petition submitted under subsection (a) of this section, the State shall approve or disapprove the petition, in whole or in part, not later than 120 days after the date of submission of the petition.
(2) Approval
The State may approve a petition if the petition meets the requirements established under subsection (a) of this section. The notice of approval shall, at a minimum, include for informational purposes—
(A) an identification of technical, financial, or other assistance that the State will provide to assist in addressing the drinking water contaminants that may be addressed by a petition based on—
(i) the relative priority of the public health concern identified in the petition with respect to the other water quality needs identified by the State;
(ii) any necessary coordination that the State will perform of the program established under this section with programs implemented or planned by other States under this section; and
(iii) funds available (including funds available from a State revolving loan fund established under title VI of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1381 et seq.)) or section 300j–12 of this title;
(B) a description of technical or financial assistance pursuant to Federal and State programs that is available to assist in implementing recommendations of the partnership in the petition, including—
(i) any program established under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.);
(ii) the program established under section 1455b of title 16;
(iii) the agricultural water quality protection program established under chapter 2 of subtitle D of title XII of the Food Security Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3838 et seq.);
(iv) the sole source aquifer protection program established under section 300h–6 of this title;
(v) the community wellhead protection program established under section 300h–7 of this title;
(vi) any pesticide or ground water management plan;
(vii) any voluntary agricultural resource management plan or voluntary whole farm or whole ranch management plan developed and implemented under a process established by the Secretary of Agriculture; and
(viii) any abandoned well closure program; and
(C) a description of activities that will be undertaken to coordinate Federal and State programs to respond to the petition.
(3) Disapproval
If the State disapproves a petition submitted under subsection (a) of this section, the State shall notify the entity submitting the petition in writing of the reasons for disapproval. A petition may be resubmitted at any time if—
(A) new information becomes available;
(B) conditions affecting the source water that is the subject of the petition change; or
(C) modifications are made in the type of assistance being requested.
(c) Grants to support State programs
(1) In general
The Administrator may make a grant to each State that establishes a program under this section that is approved under paragraph (2). The amount of each grant shall not exceed 50 percent of the cost of administering the program for the year in which the grant is available.
(2) Approval
In order to receive grant assistance under this subsection, a State shall submit to the Administrator for approval a plan for a source water quality protection partnership program that is consistent with the guidance published under subsection (d) of this section. The Administrator shall approve the plan if the plan is consistent with the guidance published under subsection (d) of this section.
(d) Guidance
(1) In general
Not later than 1 year after August 6, 1996, the Administrator, in consultation with the States, shall publish guidance to assist—
(A) States in the development of a source water quality protection partnership program; and
(B) municipal or local governments or political subdivisions of a State and community water systems in the development of source water quality protection partnerships and in the assessment of source water quality.
(2) Contents of the guidance
The guidance shall, at a minimum—
(A) recommend procedures for the approval or disapproval by a State of a petition submitted under subsection (a) of this section;
(B) recommend procedures for the submission of petitions developed under subsection (a) of this section;
(C) recommend criteria for the assessment of source water areas within a State; and
(D) describe technical or financial assistance pursuant to Federal and State programs that is available to address the contamination of sources of drinking water and to develop and respond to petitions submitted under subsection (a) of this section.
(e) Authorization of appropriations
There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $5,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 1997 through 2003. Each State with a plan for a program approved under subsection (b) of this section shall receive an equitable portion of the funds available for any fiscal year.
(f) Statutory construction
Nothing in this section—
(1)
(A) creates or conveys new authority to a State, political subdivision of a State, or community water system for any new regulatory measure; or
(B) limits any authority of a State, political subdivision, or community water system; or
(2) precludes a community water system, municipal or local government, or political subdivision of a government from locally developing and carrying out a voluntary, incentive-based, source water quality protection partnership to address the origins of drinking water contaminants of public health concern.

Source

(July 1, 1944, ch. 373, title XIV, § 1454, as added Pub. L. 104–182, title I, § 133(a),Aug. 6, 1996, 110 Stat. 1675.)
References in Text

The Federal Water Pollution Control Act, referred to in subsec. (b)(2)(A)(iii), (B)(i), is act June 30, 1948, ch. 758, as amended generally by Pub. L. 92–500, § 2,Oct. 18, 1972, 86 Stat. 816, which is classified generally to chapter 26 (§ 1251 et seq.) of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters. Title VI of the Act is classified generally to subchapter VI (§ 1381 et seq.) of chapter 26 of Title 33. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1251 of Title 33 and Tables.
The Food Security Act of 1985, referred to in subsec. (b)(2)(B)(iii), is Pub. L. 99–198, Dec. 23, 1985, 99 Stat. 1354, as amended. Chapter 2 of subtitle D of title XII of the Act was classified generally to part II (§ 3838 et seq.) of subchapter IV of chapter 58 of Title 16, Conservation, prior to repeal by Pub. L. 104–127, title III, § 336(h),Apr. 4, 1996, 110 Stat. 1007. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title of 1985 Amendment note set out under section 1281 of Title 7, Agriculture, and Tables.

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