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Proposed Amendments to 6 NYCRR 703.4, Site-Specific Enterococcus Water Quality Standards for Class I/SD Waters

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) filed a Notice of Proposed Rule Making with the New York State Department of State on January 5, 2021 to amend 6 NYCRR § 703.4, titled "Water quality standards for coliforms, enterococci, and E. coli." The proposed rule making amends 6 NYCRR § 703.4 to add site-specific criteria to select Class I and Class SD waterbodies. The new criteria use enterococcus as a fecal indicator bacteria and memorialize attainment goals for the City of New York's combined sewer overflow (CSO) abatement efforts.

A public comment hearing webinar for the proposed rule will be held on March 23, 2021 before Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Molly T. McBride via electronic webinar as follows and, accordingly, are reasonably accessible to persons with impaired mobility:

Date: March 23, 2021
Time: 2:00 p.m.
Access: To join through the internet, visit WebEx's website and click "Join."
Event Number: 178 700 2341
Password: Mar23-2pm
To join by phone only, dial: 1-518-549-0500
Access Code: 178 700 2341

Persons wishing to comment on the proposed rule will have the opportunity to make a statement at the public comment hearing webinar. Any person wishing to provide a public statement must register in advance of the hearing no later than 10:00 a.m. Monday, March 22, 2021. Any person who wishes only to observe the webinar online must also register. Any person may listen to the hearing by phone without pre-registration.

To register electronically: Persons who will login to the hearing electronically must register. To register, visit WebEx's website, click "Join," input the event number listed above, click "Register," and fill in the requested information. You will be asked whether you wish to make a public statement or not. After registration is complete, you will receive a confirmation by email with information about how to join the hearing.

To register by telephone: Any person who is not able to login electronically may participate by telephone. Call-in participants must register to speak in advance by calling the Department at 518-402-9003 no later than 10:00 a.m., Monday, March 22, 2021. Please provide your first and last name, address, email address if any, and telephone number and reference the 703.4 public comment hearing.

All participants will be muted upon entry into the hearing. The ALJ will call each person who has requested to provide a statement to speak. The ALJ will continue the hearing until everyone wishing to speak has been heard or other reasonable arrangements have been made to include their comments in the record. Reasonable time limits may be set for each speaker as necessary to afford all participants an opportunity to be heard. We also recommend that lengthy comments be summarized for oral presentation and submitted in writing as provided above. The hearing will be recorded for inclusion in the record.

The Department will provide interpreter services for hearing impaired persons, and language interpreter services for individuals with difficulty understanding or reading English, at no charge upon written request submitted no later than March 9, 2021. The written request must be addressed to ALJ McBride, NYS DEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, 1st Floor, Albany, NY 12233-1550 or emailed to ALJ McBride at

Public Comment on the Proposed Rule Making

The public comment period commences on January 20, 2021. Written statements may be submitted to NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, 4th Floor, Albany, NY 12233-3500, ATTN: Michelle Tompkins or by email to Written statements must be submitted to the NYSDEC by 5:00 p.m. on March 29, 2021, the close of the public comment period for this rule making.
Environmental and Regulatory Impact Review

NYSDEC has determined that the proposed rule making will not have a significant adverse environmental impact. NYSDEC has prepared a Regulatory Impact Statement, a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis for small businesses and local governments, a Rural Area Flexibility Analysis and a Job Impact Statement, in accordance with the State Administrative Procedures Act.


NYSDEC is conducting the rule making proceedings, including the above-mentioned public hearing, pursuant to § 3-0301(2)(a) and § 17-0301(5)(c) of the New York State Environmental Conservation Law.

Rule Making Documents

For more information on the proposed amendments, please see the sections in the following rule making document:

Amendments to 6 NYCRR §703.4 (PDF)

Section list:
Express Terms
Regulatory Impact Statement
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis for Small Business and Local Governments
Rural Area Flexibility Analysis
Job Impact Statement

Questions and Additional Information

Further information, including copies of rule making documents, are available upon request by contacting:
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

625 Broadway, 4th Floor
Albany, NY 12233-3500, ATTN: Michelle Tompkins
Phone: (518) 402-8221

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  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
    Division of Water
    625 Broadway, 4th Floor
    Albany, NY 12233-3500
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