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Q. 7, Short EAF (Part 2) Water Supply / Wastewater

Short Environmental Assessment Form Workbook

Will the proposed action impact existing:
a. Public/private water supplies?
b. Public/private wastewater treatment facilities?

Background

Water is a vital resource, and any proposed action that will require or impact a water supply needs to be thoroughly evaluated. If an action results in overloading the capacity of the water supply system, remedies can be very expensive. If the water supply source is a ground water source, exceeding capacity can have adverse effects on many surrounding land uses that also depend on that source.

Wastewater must also be properly treated and disposed of in order to minimize its impact on the environment. The reviewing agency should be aware too, that while one project may not have an impact on water and wastewater treatment supplies or facilities, many projects together over time may have an impact. This cumulative impact could lead to the need for development or upgrades of public infrastructure.

Applicable Part 1 Information

Some of the Part 1 questions that should be specifically reviewed when answering this question are:

Analysis

In order to decide if impacts will occur, the reviewing agency should look at the available information and ask:

  • Will the proposed project require a supply of water?
    • If yes, will the water be supplied through an existing public or private water supply system?
      • If yes, is the existing water supply capable of handling the proposed project's needs?
      • If no, how will the applicant supply water to the proposed project?
  • Will the proposed project require the disposal of wastewater?
    • If yes, will the proposed project connect to existing public or private wastewater treatment facilities?
      • If yes, is there sufficient existing capacity to accommodate the proposed projects needs?
      • If no, how does the applicant plan on disposing of wastewater generated by the proposed project

Will there be an impact?

If the proposed project will not require any water supply or wastewater treatment, then there will be no impact.

If however, there will be a need for either of these, then the impact to any existing water supply or wastewater treatment facility must be evaluated.

If there is an impact, how big will it be?

If there will be an impact, the reviewing agency must then evaluate the magnitude of that impact. This will depend on the overall scale and context of the proposed project as described in the Introduction to Part 2. The reviewing agency should be reasonable when conducting this review.

Small Impact

Proposed projects that will connect to an existing public water supply with adequate capacity, and adequate plans for growth, will likely only have a small impact on the water supply. If the intended water supply is a new ground water well, and there are no known problems with adjacent similar uses using the same ground water supply, there will likely be only a small impact.

Moderate to Large Impact

If the proposed project will connect to a public water supply that is near full capacity, or the intended ground water source has known limitations, there may be moderate to large impacts. If this is the case, the impacts must be addressed in Part 3.

Recording your decision

If you have determined that there are no impacts, or that only a small impact may occur, no further analysis of this topic is needed. Simply check the box under "No, or small impact may occur" next to the question and move on to Question 8. You may choose to include an explanation in Part 3 as to why you decided there were no, or only small impacts, but you are not required to do so.

If you have determined that one or more moderate to large impacts may occur, then additional analysis of this impact will be required in Part 3. You should note what the impacts are, and the reasoning that lead to your decision before moving on to Question 8.

Examples

Scenario 1: A Village proposes to purchase five acres of parkland from the local school district.

  • The park has outdoor restrooms that are connected to the village water system and sewage treatment system.
  • While used by the school district, the park was open to, and used by the public, and usage levels are not expected to change.

Then: The reviewing agency determined that there will be no impact to the water supply, or wastewater treatment facility.

Scenario 2: A developer proposes a five unit subdivision in a suburban area with no public water supply, or wastewater treatment system.

  • The surrounding land uses have no history of water supply problems.
  • There are no current or projected high groundwater levels.
  • The local health department has approved the location and design of the onsite septic systems proposed for each of the new sites.

Then: The reviewing agency determines there will only be a small impact. Be aware that in accordance with NYS Department of Health requirements, this subdivision may need to be treated as a Type 1 Action, or at minimum, require coordinated review.

Scenario 3: A developer proposes a 45 unit subdivision on open land adjacent to an existing hamlet.

  • The proposed project would connect to the towns existing water supply and wastewater treatment system.
  • The town's water supply has enough existing capacity to accommodate up to 400 new residential uses.
  • The town's wastewater treatment facilities have enough capacity to handle up to 100 new residential uses.

Then: The reviewing agency determined that there will only be a small impact to the public water supply, and public wastewater treatment facility.

Scenario 4: A developer proposes a 45 unit subdivision on open land adjacent to an existing hamlet.

  • The proposed project would connect to the towns existing water supply and wastewater treatment system.
  • The town's water supply has enough existing capacity to accommodate up to 400 new residential units.
  • The proposed project will require expansion of the existing sewer district.
  • The town's wastewater treatment facilities are running at full capacity.
  • The town has agreed to a consent order from DEC that includes upgrades to the wastewater treatment facility in order to bring it into compliance with its SPDES permit.

Then: The reviewing agency determined that the proposed project will result in a moderate to large impact to the public wastewater treatment facility.

Back to Part 2 Impact Assessment || Continue to Question 8 - (Part 2)


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