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Frequently Asked Questions About the Drinking Water Source Protection Program (DWSP2)

Drinking Water Source Protection Program (DWSP2)Overview

Q: What is the goal of the program?

A: The goal of DWSP2 is to help municipalities develop and implement a drinking water source protection plan for the sources of their drinking water. The State will assist municipalities with understanding the risks to their drinking water sources and what protection actions might be appropriate.

Q: What is a drinking water source?

A: A drinking water source can be groundwater from an aquifer or surface water, such as lake, stream or river.

Q: What is included in a drinking water source protection plan?

A: Each protection plan will be different depending on the goals of the community and the drinking water sources they aim to protect. A drinking water source protection plan may involve forming a stakeholder group, inventorying potential sources of contamination, establishing critical areas to be protected, creating an implementation timeline, and carrying out protection measures to mitigate the risk of water supply contamination.

Protection Plan Development Program

Q: What is the deadline to apply?

A: The deadline to apply for DWSP2 is February 15, 2019.

Q: Who is eligible to apply for the program?

A: All community public water supplies are encouraged to apply for the program.

Q: Can water authorities apply for the program?

A: Yes, water authorities may be considered, but they will be encouraged to work with local municipalities throughout the development and implementation of the drinking water source protection plan. Letters of support from municipalities are encouraged.

Q: Can private water suppliers apply for the program?

A: No, public funding from the program cannot directly benefit private entities. Although, municipalities served by private water suppliers are eligible to apply to protect their drinking water sources.

Q: Can a municipality apply if they have a partial or completed source water protection plan?

A: Yes, municipalities with existing protection plans are encouraged to apply.

Q: Does a municipality need a town resolution to apply for this program?

A: The State does not require a municipality to have passed a resolution prior to applying for the program.

Q: Are there any financial obligations or up-front costs to the participating municipalities?

A: This is a voluntary program, and there will be no out-of-pocket costs to participating municipalities for developing their drinking water source protection plan. However, municipalities that participate will be expected to commit staff, resources (e.g. conference rooms, local data), and time to the process for the entire three years. Review the Roles and Responsibilities of Participating Municipalities and the State (PDF, 76KB) for specifics.

Q: What will the participating municipalities receive, in terms of technical assistance, from the State-hired consultant?

A: The consultant will be following a framework, developed by the State and its partners, to compile and apply information specific to each community's drinking water source area to develop and implement a community-specific protection plan.

Each protection plan will be different depending on the goals of the community and the drinking water sources they aim to protect. A drinking water source protection plan may involve forming a stakeholder group, inventorying potential sources of contamination, establishing critical areas to be protected, creating an implementation timeline, and carrying out protection measures to mitigate the risk of water supply contamination.

Q: How long will a municipality be working with the consultant?

A: If a municipality is selected to participate in DWSP2, we expect the consultant to work with the municipality for three years. We are hopeful that drinking water source protection activities will continue beyond the three years with the municipality seeking external funding for implementation.

Q: Where should I direct any other questions about the DWSP2 application process or the program as a whole?

A: Any questions can be directed to program staff at DEC or the Department of Health (DOH) via email.

DEC email: source.water@dec.ny.gov

DOH email: bpwsp@health.ny.gov

Related Programs

Q: How does DWSP2 relate to DEC's Water Quality Improvement Project (WQIP) Program?

A: WQIP is a grant program that funds projects that can protect sources of drinking water. This cost-share program can be used as an implementation tool for a drinking water source protection plan. Visit the WQIP webpage to learn more about the program.