REGULATORY UPDATE | Chapter 109 Safe Drinking Water

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Proposed Chapter 109 (Safe Drinking Water) General Update and Fees

Updates existing regulations pertaining to treatment technique requirements for pathogens, permit fees, and monitoring and reporting requirements.

The proposed amendments are intended to:

  • Incorporate the remaining general update provisions that were separated from the proposed Revised Total Coliform Rule (RTCR) as ordered by the Environmental Quality Board as follows:
    • Clarify source water assessment and protection program requirements.
    • Revise treatment technique and turbidity performance requirements.
    • Revise permit requirements and design standards, and add new requirements for alarm and shutdown capabilities.
    • Require auxiliary power or an alternate provision, such as adequate finished water storage or interconnections.
  • Establish new annual fees and amend existing permit fees.
  • Incorporate additional general updates that will:
    • Establish the regulatory basis for issuing general permits.
    • Clarify that non-community water systems require a permit or approval from DEP prior to construction or operation.
    • Address concerns related to gaps in monitoring and tracking of back-up water sources and entry points.

Status Update

The Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) submitted its comments, recommendations and objections on October 25, 2017.

  • DEP discussed the draft Final-Form Rule at the December 7, 2017 Technical Assistance Center (TAC) Board Meeting.
  • The Final-Form Rule was presented by PA DEP at the Environmental Quality Board (EQB) Meeting on April 17, 2018.
  • PA DEP submitted the Safe Drinking Water General Update and Fees final rulemaking on May 11, 2018 to the IRRC for review and consideration as well as the PA House and Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committees.
  • The final rulemaking is expected to be considered by IRRC at its public meeting on Thursday, June 28, 2018.
  • The Final Form: Safe Drinking Water General Updates and Fees (25 PA Code Chapter 109) is available on IRCC’s webpage: (


  • Amends existing permit fees and adds new annual fees to supplement DEP’s costs and fill the funding gap of $7.5 million.
  • Annual Fee Ranges
    • Community Water Systems - $250 - $40,000
    • Non-Community Water Systems - $50 - $1,000
    • Bottled, Vended, Retail and Bulk Water Haulers - $1,000 - $2,500
  • The new annual fees will be required beginning January 2, 2018 to allow systems to include the new fees in their 2019 budgets.

Provides for new requirements for treatment plant alarm and shut-down capabilities and auxiliary power requirements.


FOR MORE INFORMATION: Serena DiMagno, Sr. Environmental Consultant