Bill Text: NY A01103 | 2019-2020 | General Assembly | Amended


Bill Title: Enacts the "private well testing act"; authorizes the department of health to promulgate rules and regulations to establish standards for the testing of drinking water from privately owned wells.

Spectrum: Moderate Partisan Bill (Democrat 36-7)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-06-06 - reported referred to ways and means [A01103 Detail]

Download: New_York-2019-A01103-Amended.html



                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________

                                         1103--A

                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions

                   IN ASSEMBLY

                                    January 14, 2019
                                       ___________

        Introduced  by  M.  of A. JAFFEE, COOK, STECK, ABINANTI, FAHY, L. ROSEN-
          THAL, GALEF, JEAN-PIERRE, D'URSO, GOTTFRIED, CAHILL, McDONOUGH,  RICH-
          ARDSON, EPSTEIN, THIELE, WILLIAMS, ROMEO, BUTTENSCHON, SAYEGH, MONTES-
          ANO,   STIRPE,   TAYLOR,  GRIFFIN,  FALL,  RIVERA,  ARROYO,  LAWRENCE,
          DeSTEFANO, ORTIZ, BARRON, COLTON -- Multi-Sponsored by  --  M.  of  A.
          DAVILA, DINOWITZ, ENGLEBRIGHT, MORINELLO, PERRY, SIMON, WALKER -- read
          once  and  referred  to the Committee on Environmental Conservation --
          committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as  amended  and
          recommitted to said committee

        AN  ACT  to  amend the environmental conservation law, the public health
          law and the real property law, in relation to  enacting  the  "private
          well testing act"

          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:

     1    Section 1. Short title. This act shall be known and may  be  cited  as
     2  the "private well testing act".
     3    § 2. Subdivision 1 of section 3-0315 of the environmental conservation
     4  law,  as  amended  by  section 12 of part T of chapter 57 of the laws of
     5  2017, is amended to read as follows:
     6    1. The department in conjunction with the commissioner of health shall
     7  create and maintain a geographic information system, and associated data
     8  storage and analytical systems for purposes of collecting, streamlining,
     9  and visualizing integrated  data,  permits,  and  relevant  sites  about
    10  drinking  water  quality  including,  but  not limited to, incorporating
    11  supply well and monitoring well data, emerging contaminant  data,  water
    12  quality  monitoring  data,  pertinent data from remediation and landfill
    13  sites, permitted discharge locations and other  potential  contamination
    14  risks  to water supplies. Such system shall also incorporate information
    15  from the source water assessment program collected by the department  of
    16  health,  information collected pursuant to section eleven hundred eleven
    17  of the public health law,  data  from  annual  water  supply  statements

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD02776-02-9

        A. 1103--A                          2

     1  prepared  pursuant  to  section  eleven  hundred fifty-one of the public
     2  health law, information from the database pursuant to title fourteen  of
     3  article  twenty-seven  of  this  chapter,  and  any  other existing data
     4  regarding  soil  and groundwater contamination currently gathered by the
     5  department, as well as data on contamination that is  readily  available
     6  from  the  United  States geological survey and other sources determined
     7  appropriate by the department. In addition to  facilitating  interagency
     8  coordination  and  predictive  analysis  to  protect water quality, such
     9  system shall provide state agency information to the  public  through  a
    10  website,  within  reasonable  limitations  to ensure confidentiality and
    11  security.
    12    § 3. Section 206 of the public health law is amended by adding  a  new
    13  subdivision 31 to read as follows:
    14    31.  The  commissioner  is authorized and directed to promulgate rules
    15  and regulations to establish standards for the testing of drinking water
    16  from privately owned wells. Such standards  shall  apply  to  any  water
    17  wells subject to subdivision eighteen of this section, as added by chap-
    18  ter  three  hundred  ninety-five of the laws of nineteen hundred ninety-
    19  nine. Such testing shall be to determine the quality, safety and  exist-
    20  ing level of contamination of drinking water from privately owned wells.
    21    §  4.  Subdivision  1  of  section  1100  of the public health law, as
    22  amended by chapter 655 of the laws  of  1978,  is  amended  to  read  as
    23  follows:
    24    1.  The  department  may make rules and regulations for the protection
    25  from contamination of any or all public or private supplies  of  potable
    26  waters  and  water supplies of the state or United States, institutions,
    27  parks, reservations or posts and their sources within the state, and the
    28  commissioner of environmental protection of the city of New York and the
    29  board of water supply of the city of New York may make  such  rules  and
    30  regulations subject to the approval of the department for the protection
    31  from  contamination  of any or all public or private supplies of potable
    32  waters and their sources within the state where the  same  constitute  a
    33  part of the source of the public or private water supply of said city.
    34    §  5. The public health law is amended by adding a new section 1111 to
    35  read as follows:
    36    § 1111. Private well testing. 1.  (a) The department shall  promulgate
    37  regulations  providing  for  the  testing of drinking water from private
    38  wells located on real property subject to this section.
    39    (b) Any contract for the sale of real property, including  a  multiple
    40  family dwelling as defined in section eight hundred two of the executive
    41  law,  which is served by a private well that is the potable water supply
    42  for such property shall include a provision requiring as a condition  of
    43  sale,  the  testing  of  such  water  supply  for at least the standards
    44  prescribed pursuant to this section. Provisions of  this  section  shall
    45  not  apply  to  property where the potable water supply has five or more
    46  service connections or that regularly serves an average  of  twenty-five
    47  or more individuals daily for at least sixty days out of the year.
    48    (c) Water sampling shall be done, preferably by a laboratory certified
    49  by the department, in the following manner:
    50    (i)  if  there  is  no water treatment system in use on the water well
    51  being tested, samples shall be collected  from  a  primary  cold  water,
    52  non-aerated  spigot or tap that draws from or feeds water to the potable
    53  water system from such water;
    54    (ii) where a water treatment system is in  use  on  the  water  supply
    55  system, the sample shall be collected as follows:

        A. 1103--A                          3

     1    (A)  the  water  treatment  system  shall be disconnected or otherwise
     2  disabled prior to the collection of the water sample; or
     3    (B)  the  sample  shall  be collected at a location prior to the water
     4  treatment system; or
     5    (iii) in the case of a new well construction  and  installation  where
     6  there  is  no  spigot  or tap on the subject property, the sample may be
     7  collected directly at the wellhead, utilizing a raw water sample.
     8    2. Every water test conducted in accordance with this section shall be
     9  conducted by a  laboratory  certified  by  the  department  pursuant  to
    10  section  five  hundred  two  of  this chapter to test for drinking water
    11  constituents and shall include but not be limited to a test for at least
    12  the following constituents: bacteria (total coliform); sodium; nitrites;
    13  nitrates; iron; manganese; iron plus manganese;  pH;  copper;  chloride;
    14  all volatile organic compounds for which maximum constituent levels have
    15  been established pursuant to public health regulations; and lead.
    16    3. (a) The department, in consultation with the department of environ-
    17  mental conservation, and local health organizations established pursuant
    18  to  article  three  of  this  chapter may require additional testing for
    19  constituents that appear on a county or regional basis including but not
    20  limited to arsenic, barium,  fluoride,  mercury,  methane,  radium,  and
    21  radon.
    22    (b)  The  department  may,  by rule or regulation, exclude or limit by
    23  geographic area or geologic  formation,  or  based  upon  well  recorded
    24  information,  any  constituent  listed  in  this  section  deemed by the
    25  department as not significant in a county or in any specific area within
    26  a county and such area or formation need not be tested as  part  of  any
    27  water test conducted in accordance with this section.
    28    (c)  For  each  constituent  to  be tested for in accordance with this
    29  section, the department shall establish, by regulation  a  maximum  time
    30  period  for  which  a test result shall remain valid for the purposes of
    31  this section  without  necessitating  retesting  for  such  constituent;
    32  provided,  however,  such  time period shall not exceed twelve months. A
    33  retest of the water supply  shall  not  be  required  pursuant  to  this
    34  section  if  the  contract  of sale is entered into within the period of
    35  test validity established pursuant to this paragraph.    Notwithstanding
    36  any  provision  of  this  paragraph  to the contrary, a buyer and seller
    37  subject to the provisions of this section may mutually agree  to  retest
    38  for  a constituent even though the maximum time period for test validity
    39  for the  constituent  established  pursuant  to  this  section  has  not
    40  expired.
    41    4.  (a)  Any water test results provided by a laboratory to the person
    42  or persons requesting the test shall  include  the  maximum  constituent
    43  levels  or other established water quality standards, if any, prescribed
    44  by the department for each constituent tested and shall  be  transmitted
    45  on  a  standardized private well water test reporting form prescribed by
    46  the department. The form shall refer the buyer and seller  of  the  real
    47  property  in  question  to  the  appropriate office or person within the
    48  department, or the department's website for information regarding  reme-
    49  diation alternatives.
    50    (b)  Within  ten  business  days after completion of the water test, a
    51  laboratory shall submit the water test results to  the  department  with
    52  the following information:
    53    (i)  a statement that the testing is for the purpose of complying with
    54  the "private well testing act";
    55    (ii) the location of the real property, described  by  block  and  lot
    56  number, street address, municipality, and county;

        A. 1103--A                          4

     1    (iii) the name and mailing address of the person or persons making the
     2  request for the test;
     3    (iv)  an affidavit stating the date and time that the water sample was
     4  collected and the specific point of collection and the  legal  name  and
     5  mailing  address  of  the  person  or  persons  collecting the raw water
     6  samples;
     7    (v) the date and time the sample was analyzed by the laboratory; and
     8    (vi) such other information as may be required by the  department,  in
     9  consultation  with  the  department  of  environmental  conservation and
    10  appropriate local health organizations established pursuant  to  article
    11  three of this chapter.
    12    (c)  The  department may require laboratories to submit electronically
    13  the information required pursuant to paragraph (b) of this subdivision.
    14    (d) A laboratory shall not release water test results  to  any  person
    15  except  the buyer or seller of the real property at issue as provided in
    16  subdivision one of this section, the lessor  of  the  real  property  as
    17  provided  in  subdivision  six of this section, any person authorized by
    18  the buyer, seller, or lessor, as the case may be, the department, or any
    19  person designated by court order.
    20    (e) The department shall make the data accumulated from the water test
    21  results submitted by laboratories pursuant to this section available  to
    22  counties,   municipalities,  or  other  governmental  entities  for  the
    23  purposes of studying groundwater supplies or contamination in the state;
    24  provided, however, that identifying information is removed.
    25    (f) The results of water well tests shall be provided to  the  depart-
    26  ment  of  environmental  conservation  for  inclusion  in  the statewide
    27  groundwater remediation strategy developed in  accordance  with  section
    28  15-3109  of the environmental conservation law and the geographic infor-
    29  mation system developed in accordance with section 3-0315 of  the  envi-
    30  ronmental conservation law.
    31    5. The department, within ten business days after receiving any report
    32  of  a  water test failure in accordance with this section, shall provide
    33  notice of such water test failure to the appropriate local health organ-
    34  izations established pursuant to article  three  of  this  chapter.  The
    35  appropriate  local  health organizations established pursuant to article
    36  three of this chapter shall issue a general notice  to  owners  of  real
    37  property served by private wells or a public water system located in the
    38  vicinity  of  the  real  property  experiencing  the  water test failure
    39  suggesting or recommending that those property owners may wish  to  have
    40  their  private  wells tested for at least the constituents at issue. The
    41  specific address or location of the private well  that  failed  a  water
    42  test  shall  not be identified in the notice or by any other means or in
    43  any other manner. The department shall establish criteria for  notifica-
    44  tion  which  may  include,  but  shall  not  be  limited to, the maximum
    45  constituent level, the level of exceedance reported, and the distance or
    46  location of the properties or public water supply in the vicinity of the
    47  contaminated well for which testing is recommended.
    48    6. Within two years after the effective date of this section,  and  at
    49  least  once every five years thereafter, the lessor of any real property
    50  the potable water supply for which is a private  well  shall  test  that
    51  water  supply  in the manner established pursuant to this section for at
    52  least the constituents required pursuant to subdivisions two  and  three
    53  of  this  section.  Within  thirty  days  after  the receipt of the test
    54  results, the lessor shall also provide a written copy  thereof  to  each
    55  lessee of a rental unit on the property. The lessor shall also provide a

        A. 1103--A                          5

     1  written  copy  of  the  most recent test results to a prospective tenant
     2  prior to the signing of a lease of a rental unit on the property.
     3    7. (a) The department, in consultation with the department of environ-
     4  mental conservation, and local health organizations established pursuant
     5  to  article  three  of this chapter shall establish a public information
     6  and education program to inform the public and appropriate  professional
     7  disciplines  of  the  enactment of this section and the substance of its
     8  provisions and requirements, the potential health effects  of  consuming
     9  water  from a private well that does not meet maximum constituent levels
    10  and other established water quality standards, the potential presence of
    11  radium in at least some potable groundwater supplies in the  state,  the
    12  geographic  areas  in the state subject to an actual or potential threat
    13  of danger from  contaminated  groundwater,  the  importance  of  testing
    14  private  wells regularly for constituents, and suggested water treatment
    15  techniques, equipment strategies and public  funding  sources  available
    16  for  treating  water  from  private  wells that have failed a water test
    17  conducted in accordance with this section.
    18    (b) The department shall make available to the public a general compi-
    19  lation of water test results data arranged or identified by  county  and
    20  municipality  or appropriate geographic area therein, but which does not
    21  include specific address or location information.
    22    8. Within three years of the  effective  date  of  this  section,  the
    23  department  shall prepare and transmit to the governor and legislature a
    24  report on the implementation and operation of this section. Such  report
    25  shall  also  describe the benefits and deficiencies realized as a result
    26  of this section and include recommendations for any appropriate legisla-
    27  tive action. The report shall also be made available to the  public  and
    28  be posted on the department's website.
    29    §  6.  The real property law is amended by adding a new section 468 to
    30  read as follows:
    31    § 468. Private well testing requirements.  1. Every contract  for  the
    32  sale  of  real property, including a multiple family dwelling as defined
    33  in section eight hundred two of the executive law, which is served by  a
    34  private  well  that  is the potable water supply for such property shall
    35  include a provision requiring as a condition of  sale,  the  testing  of
    36  such  water  supply  for  at  least the standards prescribed pursuant to
    37  section eleven hundred eleven of the public health  law.  Provisions  of
    38  this  section shall not apply to property where the potable water supply
    39  has five or more service connections or that regularly serves an average
    40  of twenty-five or more individuals daily for at least sixty days out  of
    41  the year.
    42    2.  Closing of title on the sale of such real property shall not occur
    43  unless both the buyer and the seller have received and reviewed  a  copy
    44  of  the  water test results. At closing, the buyer and seller both shall
    45  certify in writing that they have received and reviewed the  water  test
    46  results.
    47    3. The requirements of this section may not be waived.
    48    § 7. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after
    49  it  shall have become a law. Effective immediately, the addition, amend-
    50  ment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implemen-
    51  tation of this act on its effective date are authorized and directed  to
    52  be made and completed on or before such effective date.
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