Proposed Changes to Michigan Drinking Water Rules Will Better Protect Public Health

Nov. 28, 2005

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 seeks comments on its tentative decision to approve five changes to Michigan's drinking water regulations that will enhance protection of public health and increase information provided to the public about their drinking water. The changes are required under amendments to the federal Safe Drinking Water Act. As EPA adopts new drinking water regulations, states such as Michigan that administer their own programs must adopt rules at least as stringent.

Michigan plans to adopt:

-- the Consumer Confidence Report rule requires public drinking water systems to provide their customers with annual reports on the quality of their drinking water;

-- the Interim Enhanced Surface Water Treatment rule improves public health by increasing protection against waterborne pathogens such as cryptosporidium;

-- the Stage 1 Disinfectants and Disinfection By-products rule minimizes exposure to disinfectants that are added to drinking water and by-products that can form in water distribution systems;

-- the revised Public Notification rule that emphasizes the consumer's right to know about the quality of their drinking water and sets guidelines for the form, manner, frequency and content of public notices; and

-- the authority to assess penalties against water systems that violate national primary drinking water regulations.

If there is sufficient interest, EPA will hold a public hearing on the proposed changes. Comments and requests for a hearing should be postmarked by Dec. 14 and sent to EPA Region 5, Ground Water and Drinking Water Branch (WG-15J), 77 W. Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL 60604 or e-mailed to [email protected].

Documents on the proposed changes are available for review at the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Water Bureau, Constitution Hall, 525 W. Allegan St., 2nd floor, Lansing, MI, and at EPA's Chicago office.

Source: EPA