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RULES AND REGULATIONS

Title 25—ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION

ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY BOARD

[ 25 PA. CODE CH. 109 ]

Disinfection Requirements Rule

[48 Pa.B. 2509]
[Saturday, April 28, 2018]

 The Environmental Quality Board (Board) amends Chapter 109 (relating to safe drinking water) to read as set forth in Annex A. This final-form rulemaking will strengthen water system requirements relating to microbial protection and disinfection requirements.

 This final-form rulemaking also includes minor clarifications to ensure consistency with and obtain or maintain primary enforcement authority for several Federal rules promulgated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), including the Stage 2 Disinfectants/Disinfection Byproducts Rule (Stage 2 DBPR) (71 FR 388 (January 4, 2006)), Long Term 2 Enhanced Surface Water Treatment Rule (LT2) (71 FR 654 (January 5, 2006)) and the Lead and Copper Rule Short-Term Revisions (LCRSTR) (72 FR 57782 (October 10, 2007)). Chapter 109 was previously amended to implement these Federal rules. See 39 Pa.B. 7279 (December 26, 2009), regarding Stage 2 DBPR and LT2, and 40 Pa.B. 7212 (December 18, 2010), regarding LCRSTR.

 This final-form rulemaking will protect public health through a multiple barrier approach designed to guard against microbial contamination by ensuring the adequacy of treatment designed to inactivate microbial pathogens and by ensuring the integrity of drinking water distribution systems.

 Safe drinking water is vital to maintaining healthy and sustainable communities. Proactively avoiding incidents such as waterborne disease outbreaks can prevent loss of life, reduce the incidents of illness and reduce health care costs. Proper investment in public water system infrastructure and operations helps ensure a continuous supply of safe drinking water, enables communities to plan and build future capacity for economic growth, and ensures their long-term sustainability.

 The disinfectant residual requirements in the distribution system will apply to all 1,949 community water systems and those noncommunity water systems that have installed disinfection (746) for a total of 2,695 public water systems. These public water systems serve a total population of 11.3 million people.

 The CT/log inactivation monitoring and reporting requirements will apply to all 353 filter plants which are operated by 319 water systems.

 This final-form rulemaking was adopted by the Board at its meeting of December 12, 2017.

A. Effective Date

 This final-form rulemaking is effective upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. Based on advisory committee and public comments, this final-form rulemaking includes the following deferred implementation dates:

 • The submission of a sample siting plan is required 6 months after the effective date to allow time for development of the plan.

 • The development of a nitrification control plan is required 1 year after the effective date.

 • The amended monitoring, reporting and treatment technique requirements for the disinfectant residual in the distribution system are required 1 year after the effective date to allow additional time for operational changes and to effectively increase disinfectant residuals to 0.2 milligram per liter (mg/L) throughout the distribution system. If additional time is needed for capital improvements or to complete more substantial operational changes, a system-specific compliance schedule may be requested.

B. Contact Persons

 For further information, contact Lisa D. Daniels, Director, Bureau of Safe Drinking Water, P.O. Box 8467, Rachel Carson State Office Building, Harrisburg, PA 17105-8467, (717) 787-9633; or William Cumings, Assistant Counsel, Bureau of Regulatory Counsel, P.O. Box 8464, Rachel Carson State Office Building, Harrisburg, PA 17105-8464, (717) 787-7060. Persons with a disability may use the Pennsylvania AT&T Relay Service at (800) 654-5984 (TDD users) or (800) 654-5988 (voice users).

C. Statutory Authority

 This final-form rulemaking is being made under the authority of section 4 of the Pennsylvania Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) (35 P.S. § 721.4), which grants the Board the authority to adopt rules and regulations governing the provision of drinking water to the public, and section 1920-A of The Administrative Code of 1929 (71 P.S. § 510-20), which authorizes the Board to promulgate rules and regulations necessary for the performance of the work of the Department of Environmental Protection (Department).

D. Background and Purpose

Amendments to surface water treatment regulations regarding monitoring and reporting

 This final-form rulemaking includes new monitoring and reporting requirements to ensure compliance with existing treatment techniques regarding log inactivation and CT requirements. Log inactivation is a measure of the amount of viable microorganisms that are rendered nonviable during disinfection processes. CT is the product of residual disinfectant concentration (C) and disinfectant contact time (T). The CT value is used to determine the levels of inactivation under various operating conditions.

 Public water systems using surface water or groundwater under the direct influence of surface water (GUDI) sources have long been required to meet log inactivation and CT requirements for the inactivation of Giardia cysts and viruses. These existing treatment technique requirements are intended to ensure that water systems provide adequate and continuous disinfection for the inactivation of pathogens. The only way to ensure compliance with the existing treatment techniques is to measure and record the data elements that are needed to calculate CTs (that is, disinfectant residual, temperature, pH, flow and volume) and report the results.

 This final-form rulemaking also clarifies and strengthens the minimum residual disinfectant level at the entry point by adding a zero to the minimum level (0.20 mg/L). Water suppliers will be required to maintain a residual that is equal to or greater than 0.20 mg/L. Currently, levels of 0.15 mg/L or higher round up to 0.2 mg/L and are considered in compliance. A level of 0.20 mg/L is necessary due to the importance of meeting CTs and of maintaining an adequate disinfectant residual in the water entering the distribution system. Also, this level of sensitivity is consistent with existing requirements for the Groundwater Rule (0.40 mg/L) as specified in § 109.1302(a)(2) (relating to treatment technique requirements). Finally, this level of sensitivity is achievable using current instrumentation for the measurement of disinfectant residuals.

Amendments to disinfectant residual requirements in the distribution system

 This final-form rulemaking is intended to strengthen the distribution system disinfectant residual requirements by increasing the minimum residual in the distribution system to 0.2 mg/L free or total chlorine. The Department's previous disinfectant residual requirements for distribution systems had not been substantially updated since 1992 and required the maintenance of a detectable residual that was defined as 0.02 mg/L. The Department's previous treatment technique was not protective of public health because a residual of 0.02 mg/L is below the minimum reporting level of 0.1 mg/L and represents a false positive reading.

 Maintenance of a disinfectant residual in the distribution system is:

 • Required under the Federal Surface Water Treatment Rule (40 CFR Part 141, Subpart H (relating to filtration and disinfection)) for all systems using surface water and GUDI sources and under Chapter 109 for all community water systems and those noncommunity water systems that have installed disinfection.

 • Designated by the EPA as the best available technology for compliance with both the Total Coliform Rule (TCR) and the Revised TCR.

 • Considered an important element in a multiple barrier strategy aimed at maintaining the integrity of the distribution system and protecting public health.

 • Intended to maintain the integrity of the distribution system by inactivating microorganisms in the distribution system, indicating distribution system upset and controlling biofilm growth.

 The proposed rulemaking was published at 46 Pa.B. 857 (February 20, 2016). The preamble included numerous studies, reports and data in support of the minimum disinfectant residual of 0.2 mg/L in the distribution system. Additional studies, reports and data were reviewed for this final-form rulemaking.

 The EPA published a Six-Year Review 3 (SYR 3) Technical Support Document for Microbial Contaminant Regulations in December 2016. The 1996 amendments to the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C.A. §§ 300f—300j-27) require the EPA to periodically review existing National primary drinking water regulations and determine which, if any, need to be revised. The purpose of the review, called the SYR, is to identify those regulations for which current health effects assessments, changes in technology, analytical methods, occurrence and exposure, implementation or other factors will improve or strengthen public health protection.

 As part of the SYR 3, the EPA requested compliance monitoring data from states/tribes from 2006—2011 regarding the presence/absence of total coliforms, E. coli and fecal coliforms, and data for disinfectant residual levels in the distribution system. Microbial contaminant data from 34 states/tribes met the quality assurance/quality control criteria and are included in the SYR 3 microbial dataset.

 Using the SYR 3 data, the EPA conducted an occurrence analysis of microbial indicators paired with disinfectant residual data that are measured at the same time and location. The five bins of free and total chlorine residual concentrations are as follows:

 • Bin 1: Concentrations equal to 0 (''not detected or below detection limit'')

 • Bin 2: Concentrations >0 and ≤0.2 mg/L

 • Bin 3: Concentrations >0.2 mg/L and ≤0.5 mg/L

 • Bin 4: Concentrations >0.5 mg/L and ≤1.0 mg/L

 • Bin 5: Concentrations >1.0 mg/L

 This represents the first National dataset available to evaluate microbial data as a function of disinfectant residual. More than 5 million samples were used for this analysis. The following figures represent a summary of the EPA's findings.

Figure 1. Summary of percent (%) positive routine total coliform samples for each bin of free and total chlorine residual concentrations (mg/L) from SYR 3 dataset (2006—2011). Dataset = 5.434 million samples.


 The EPA found that for routine samples with free chlorine, the highest percentage of samples that were positive occurred when free chlorine was equal to 0 mg/L (''not detected''). The percentages dropped by more than half for the >0—0.2 mg/L bin, then appeared to flatten when free chlorine was >0.2 mg/L. The total coliform positive rate was less than 1% when chlorine residuals were greater than or equal to 0.2 mg/L of free chlorine. The EPA found that the trend is similar for total chlorine routine samples except that for total coliforms, the percent of positive samples was slightly higher for the >0—0.2 mg/L bin than for the 0 mg/L bin.

Figure 2. Summary of percent (%) positive routine fecal coliform/E. coli samples for each bin of free and total chlorine residual concentrations (mg/L) from SYR 3 dataset (2006—2011). Dataset = 5.434 million samples.


 The EPA found that the trend is similar for fecal coliforms/E.coli positive samples. For total chlorine routine samples, percent positive fecal coliform/E. coli results for the >0.2 mg/L—0.5 mg/L bin were slightly higher than for the >0.5 mg/L—1.0 mg/L bin and the >1.0 bin, indicating a possible tailing off of the positive occurrence at 0.5 mg/L for total chlorine compared to tailing at 0.2 mg/L free chlorine.

Figure 3. Summary of percent (%) positive repeat total coliform samples for each bin of free and total chlorine residual concentrations (mg/L) from SYR 3 dataset (2006—2011). Dataset = 5.434 million samples.


 As expected, the EPA found that the percentage of positive total coliform samples was much higher overall for repeat samples than for routine samples. More than 40% of repeat total coliform samples were positive when free chlorine was 0 mg/L, compared to a slightly lower repeat total coliform positive occurrence of ~29% when the total chlorine was 0 mg/L. Similar to routine samples, repeat total coliform positive occurrence declined as free and total chlorine residual increased, with a flattening of occurrence at 0.5 mg/L for both free and total chlorine residuals.

Figure 4. Summary of percent (%) positive repeat fecal coliform/E. coli samples for each bin of free and total chlorine residual concentrations (mg/L) from SYR 3 dataset (2006—2011). Dataset = 5.434 million samples.


 The EPA found that the trend is similar for fecal coliforms/E.coli positive samples.

 In summary, based on an assessment of 5.434 million samples, the EPA determined the following:

 • A lower rate of both total coliform and fecal coliform/ E. coli positives occurs as the free or total chlorine residual increased to higher levels.

 • This relationship between chlorine residuals and occurrence of total coliform and fecal coliform/E. coli positives was similar to results reported by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (Ingels, 2015). In addition, this relationship is consistent with the findings of LeChevallier, et al. (1996) which stated that disinfectant residuals of 0.2 mg/L or more of free chlorine, or 0.5 mg/L or more of total chlorine, are associated with reduced levels of coliform bacteria. Both of these studies were previously discussed in the preamble of the proposed rulemaking.

 • A detectable concentration of disinfectant residual in the distribution system may not be adequately protective of public health due to microbial pathogens. This is based on concerns about analytical methods and the potential for false positives (Wahman and Pressman, 2015). According to the EPA, maintaining a disinfectant residual above a set numerical value in the distribution system may improve public health protection from a variety of pathogens.

 The EPA's concerns about the analytical methods and the potential for false positives is consistent with information provided by HACH©, the leading manufacturer of field test equipment. HACH© provided information to the Small Water Systems Technical Assistance Center (TAC) Board during the development of the proposed rulemaking that supported a minimum reporting level for a disinfectant residual of 0.1 mg/L. Details about this data were included in the preamble of the proposed rulemaking.

 This determination is also consistent with a detection limit study that was performed by Aqua Pennsylvania in 2015 in conjunction with the Philadelphia Water Department and Corona Environmental Consulting. A summary of these experiments was included in Aqua Pennsylvania's public comments. According to Aqua Pennsylvania:

 • Aqua Pennsylvania's laboratory conducted 199 determinations for total chlorine residual by the N,N Diethyl-1,4 Phenylenediamine Sulfate (DPD) method using the HACH Pocket Colorimeter II.

 • Seven spike concentrations were used: 0.02 mg/L to 0.65 mg/L total chlorine.

 • While method performance generally improved as spike concentration increased, performance did not clearly degrade at a specific concentration. The range of 0.1 mg/L to 0.2 mg/L was not unreasonable as a minimum reporting level.

 • These data should be viewed as one piece of information on the topic. A much larger project and National discussion of a ''true detectable residual'' is needed.

 To ensure that the Department's disinfectant residual requirements are adequately protective of public health and are achievable using currently available analytical methods, the Department has retained the level of 0.2 mg/L as a numeric standard. This level represents a standard that is above the minimum reporting level of 0.1 mg/L. Due to the EPA's rules of rounding for compliance determinations, disinfectant residual levels ≥0.15 mg/L will round up to 0.2 mg/L and will be in compliance with the numeric standard.

State data

 At least 23 states have promulgated more stringent requirements when compared to the Commonwealth's previous standard of 0.02 mg/L. Nineteen of these states have disinfectant residual requirements that are ≥0.2 mg/L. The following table includes a summary of other states' requirements, including whether the state allows compliance with the heterotrophic plate count (HPC) standard of 500 as an alternative compliance criteria (ACC).


State Minimum Distribution System Residual (mg/L) Allows HPC as ACC
Alabama* 0.2 (free), 0.5 (total) No
Colorado* 0.2 (free or total) Yes
Delaware 0.3 (free) No
Florida* 0.2 (free), 0.6 (total) No
Georgia 0.2 (free) Yes
Illinois* 0.2 (free), 0.5 (total) No
Indiana 0.2 (free), 0.5 (total) No
Iowa 0.3 (free), 1.5 (total) Yes
Kansas* 0.2 (free), 1.0 (total) No
Kentucky* 0.2 (free), 0.5 (total) No
Louisiana* 0.5 (free or total) No
Minnesota 0.1 (free or total) No
Missouri 0.2 (total) Yes
Nebraska SW-0.2 (free), 0.25 or 0.5 (total); GW-0.1 (free) Yes
Nevada 0.05 (free or total) No
New Jersey* 0.05 (free or total) Yes
North Carolina* 0.2 (free), 1.0 (total) Yes
Ohio* 0.2 (free), 1.0 (total) No
Oklahoma 0.2 (free), 1.0 (total) No
Tennessee* 0.2 (free) No
Texas* 0.2 (free), 0.5 (total) No
Vermont 0.1 (free) No
West Virginia* 0.2 (total) No
* States with mandatory disinfection

 Of the 19 states with disinfectant residual requirements ≥0.2 mg/L, only 6 of these states retained the alternative compliance criteria for HPC. The Board requested comment on references to studies, reports or data that provide supporting evidence that an HPC <500 provides an equivalent level of public health protection when compared to a disinfectant residual of 0.2 mg/L. One citation was provided. However, the EPA document that was referenced was an unpublished draft document. Because of the lack of available studies on this issue and the fact that the majority of states (68%) previously listed do not allow the use of HPC as an ACC, the Board has reaffirmed the decision to not allow the use of HPC as an ACC.

 The disinfectant residual requirements aim to strike a balance between improving microbial inactivation while limiting adverse impacts on disinfection byproduct (DBP) formation. Water systems can meet more stringent disinfectant residual requirements and still comply with DBP requirements as evidenced by a review of TCR and DBP compliance data from other states (the EPA, ECHO web site). The preamble of the proposed rulemaking included graphs that compared the percentage of community water systems with violations for the TCR and DBPs in Alabama, Tennessee, West Virginia, Illinois, Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina and Ohio with the compliance rates in this Commonwealth. From 2011 to 2014, the large majority of states requiring disinfectant residual levels ≥0.2 mg/L had better TCR compliance rates than this Commonwealth (that is, had lower percentages of community water systems with TCR maximum contaminant level (MCL) violations). Some of these states were also able to maintain low rates of DBP violations as well.

 A disinfectant residual serves as an indicator of distribution system contamination and the effectiveness of distribution system best management practices. Best management practices include flushing, storage tank maintenance, cross-connection control, leak detection, and effective pipe replacement and repair practices. The effective implementation of best management practices will help water suppliers comply with the disinfectant residual treatment technique by lowering chlorine demand and maintaining an adequate disinfectant residual throughout the distribution system. These same practices also help to control DBP formation.

 Water systems that have participated in the Department's Distribution System Optimization Program have shown great success in utilizing operational changes and other lower cost options to maintain simultaneous compliance with adequate disinfectant residual levels and DBPs. Following are case studies from the Distribution System Optimization Program:

System A: This system serves 13,000 customers through 2,974 connections, uses free chlorine, has 1 standpipe and a distribution system storage capacity of 1.25 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system experienced an upward trend in trihalomethane (THM) levels leading to drinking water locational running annual average (LRAA) MCL exceedances in 2 consecutive quarters and hydraulic dead-ends in portions of the distribution system requiring significant flushing to maintain a detectable residual.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted in-plant water quality profiling (disinfectant residual, total organic carbon, pH and DBPs), distribution system investigative sampling, in-tank water quality monitoring and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring for 1 month.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found significant in-plant DBP formation, and high levels of THMs and low disinfectant residuals associated with stratification of standpipe.

 • Remedies: The system decreased the pre-filtration chlorine feed rate to reduce in-plant THM formation resulting in a return to compliance with the LRAA MCL and increased the frequency and duration of routine distribution system flushing in problematic areas to maintain a minimum residual of 0.20 mg/L free chlorine. The system is currently evaluating the benefit of additional measures including the use of a mixing aeration system for the standpipe and automatic flushing units in problematic areas of the distribution system.

System B: This system serves 8,600 customers through 3,175 connections, uses chloramines for secondary disinfection, has 2 standpipes, 3 ground level tanks and a distribution system storage capacity of 4.755 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system had difficulty maintaining a disinfectant residual throughout high- and low-pressure zones.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted a chloramine dosing and hold study, entry point hold study, distribution system investigative sampling, in-tank water quality monitoring, storage tank turnover analysis and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring for 1 month.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found uneven chlorine dosing at the end of the sedimentation basin, poor control and monitoring of ammonia dosing prior to the entry point, highly reactive monochloramine residual degraded completely within 48 hours, poor mixing performance and excessive storage tank turnover time (~15 days), trace disinfectant residual in both standpipes and areas of nondetect monochloramine residual in both pressure zones.

 • Remedies: The system developed a weir system to increase mixing at the chlorine dosing location in the sedimentation basins, began routine testing of ammonia strength and feed rates, began routine grab sample monitoring of free ammonia and monochloramine to achieve more precise ammonia dosing, increased flushing of problematic areas of the distribution system to maintain monochloramine residual of 1.0 mg/L, modified operations of storage tanks to decrease turnover time by ~50%, removed the standpipe from service to decrease excessive storage capacity by 1 million gallons and began system-wide flushing of the distribution system in coordination with free chlorine burns to minimize transitional mixing zones. The system is currently evaluating the benefit of automatic flushing units in problematic areas of the distribution system.

System C: This system serves 6,000 customers through 2,900 connections, uses free chlorine and has 2 ground level storage tanks.

 • Historical problems: This system had difficulty maintaining a disinfectant residual throughout the distribution system.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted distribution system investigative sampling.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found that extremities within the distribution system had free chlorine residuals <0.10 mg/L and required significant flushing to maintain residuals >0.20 mg/L.

 • Remedies: The system performed a flushing study to identify locations for installation of automatic flushing units and installed three automatic flushing units to create an artificial demand in areas of low disinfectant residuals.

System D: This system serves 7,800 customers through 4,382 connections, uses free chlorine, has 2 ground level storage tanks and a distribution system storage capacity of 4.5 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system had difficulty maintaining disinfectant residuals at the master meters of consecutive systems.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted in-tank water quality monitoring, storage tank turnover analysis and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring for 1 month.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found poor mixing performance and excessive storage tank turnover (15—22 days) and significant impact from storage tanks on disinfectant residuals in areas of influence.

 • Remedies: The system modified operation of storage tanks to decrease turnover time and stratification as well as decrease degradation of disinfectant residuals.

System E: This system serves 25,500 customers through 9,300 connections, uses free chlorine, has 5 ground level storage tanks, 1 elevated tank and a distribution system storage capacity of 7.25 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system had low disinfectant residuals at the master meter from the selling system and had difficulty maintaining residuals in portions of the distribution system.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted a master meter hold study, in-tank water quality monitoring, storage tank turnover analysis and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring for 1 week.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found rapid degradation of free chlorine residual due to the purchase of chloraminated water at the master meter, poor mixing performance and excessive storage tank turnover (7-8 days), and significant impact of storage tanks on disinfectant residual in areas of influence.

 • Remedies: The system increased communication with the selling system, modified its residual boosting strategy at the master meter and increased monitoring, and modified its operation of storage tanks to decrease turnover time and stratification as well as decrease degradation of disinfectant residual.

System F: This system serves 10,000 customers through 4,927 connections, uses free chlorine, has 4 ground level tanks, 1 elevated tank, 1 stand pipe and a distribution system storage capacity of 3.2 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system had difficulty maintaining disinfectant residuals throughout the distribution system during summer and early fall.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted a storage tank turnover analysis and distribution system and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring for 2 weeks.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found significant impact from storage tanks on the disinfectant residual in areas of influence and that storage tank operations were based on plant production rather than distribution system water quality data.

 • Remedies: The system increased water quality data collection in the distribution system, modified storage tank operation based on water quality data, and removed a storage tank from service to reduce total distribution system capacity.

System G: This system serves 33,000 customers through 15,000 connections, uses free chlorine, has 4 ground level storage tanks, 1 standpipe and a distribution system storage capacity of 6 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system had difficulty maintaining disinfectant residuals throughout the distribution system during summer and early fall.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted a storage tank turnover analysis and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring for 2 weeks.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found poor mixing performance and excessive storage tank turnover time (~8 days).

 • Remedies: The system installed mixing systems in storage tanks where stratification was observed to homogenize water quality.

System H: This system serves 18,000 customers through 8,200 connections, uses free chlorine, has 3 ground level storage tanks, 1 elevated tank and a distribution system storage capacity of 4.75 million gallons.

 • Historical problems: This system had elevated THM and haloacetic acid levels.

 • Technical assistance efforts: Department and system staff conducted a storage tank turnover analysis and storage tank continuous disinfectant residual monitoring at multiple locations over 3 months.

 • Evaluation findings: The evaluation found significant impact from storage tanks on disinfectant residuals in areas of influence and poor mixing performance and excessive storage tank turnover time (6.2—12.5 days).

 • Remedies: The system installed mixing systems in storage tanks where stratification was observed to homogenize water quality and modified storage tank operation to decrease turnover time.

 Water suppliers can obtain more information about these distribution system assessment and optimization tools from the Department's web site at www.dep.pa.gov (keyword: distribution system optimization).

 The Board requested comment on several aspects of the proposed rulemaking, including:

 1. Additional studies and reports regarding detection limits for free and total chlorine residual analysis in the field.

 The Board received one study and the data were used to inform decisions about the minimum reporting level.

 2. Studies, reports or data that support a disinfectant residual of 0.1 mg/L or any other disinfectant residual that is equally protective of public health.

 The Board received disinfectant residual and microbial data from six water systems. Following is a summary of the data:

System A: Large system; provided summary disinfectant residual data from 2004—2014; of the 36,500 samples analyzed, only ~3% of the samples were ≤0.15 mg/L total chlorine residual

System B: Large system; provided summary data for last 5 years; for the 14 total coliform positive samples reported, the disinfectant residual ranged from 0.02—1.35 mg/L, with an average = 0.67 mg/L

System C: Large system; uses chloramines; provided disinfectant residual and coliform data from 2008—2015; for 2011—2015, 7,363 disinfectant residual samples were analyzed with only 128 (1.7%) <0.15 mg/L

System D: 33,000 disinfectant residual records were analyzed from 2013—2016; only 332 (1%) <0.15 mg/L

System E: Medium system; provided a summary of free chlorine residual data for 2014-2015; in 2014, six dead end samples <0.15 mg/L; in 2015, all results >0.15 mg/L

System F: Large system; uses chloramines, provided 25,000 sample results from 2012—2016; 99.7% of samples ≥0.2 mg/L; only 0.3% of samples <0.2 mg/L; 59 positive total coliform samples with no correlation between residual

 To summarize, data from these medium and large water systems indicate that a very small percentage (0.3—3%) of these historical disinfectant residuals would not have met a disinfectant residual requirement of 0.15—0.2 mg/L. These systems are well-positioned to meet a disinfectant residual of 0.2 mg/L.

 Finally, the Board did not receive any studies or reports that support an alternate disinfectant residual of 0.1 mg/L.

 3. References to studies, reports or data that provide supporting evidence that an HPC <500 provides an equivalent level of public health protection when compared to a disinfectant residual of 0.2 mg/L.

 The Board received one reference to an unpublished draft document. However, the document was unavailable and could not be used. The Department is not aware of any other studies or reports that provide evidence that an HPC <500 provides equivalent public health protection.

 4. Anticipated costs to comply with the proposed disinfectant residual requirements.

 The Board received cost information from four water systems. Cost information in this preamble and the Regulatory Analysis Form (RAF) was updated accordingly.

 5. Whether a deferred effective date of 6 months after final promulgation is warranted to provide water systems with additional time to make any necessary operational changes. The anticipated length of time needed to increase disinfectant residuals and whether capital improvements are anticipated to meet the proposed requirements.

 The Board received multiple comments on the need for deferred effective dates. The effective dates were amended accordingly.

 6. The compliance determination, especially for small systems.

 The Board received several comments on the compliance determinations and all comments were taken into consideration.

 This final-form rulemaking was presented to the TAC Board on July 13, 2017, and August 24, 2017. The TAC Board made nine recommendations, six of which were incorporated into this final-form rulemaking. Section E includes more information about the TAC Board's recommendations. The recommendation regarding averaging additional grab sample measurements from a sampling location will be included in Department guidance on system monitoring. Regarding the two remaining recommendations, one recommendation was to delay amendments to Chapter 109 until the Safe Drinking Water Program is at full complement and current regulations are uniformly enforced. The Board is taking steps to provide the Department with additional funds through fee increases and believes that proceeding with this final-form rulemaking now is in the public interest because of the compelling public health benefits discussed in previous sections of this preamble. The remaining recommendation is for the Department to conduct a DBP evaluation to determine the impacts of increasing the chlorine residual in the distribution system using data only from water systems in this Commonwealth. The Department will continue to track and analyze TCR and DBP compliance rates as this final-form rulemaking is implemented to determine whether simultaneous compliance is being achieved.

 The Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) submitted several comments. To summarize, IRRC recommended the following:

 1. The Board should continue to work with the regulated community to develop a schedule for implementing this final-form rulemaking that adequately protects the health, safety and welfare of the public, while at the same time minimizing the fiscal impact it will have on water systems.

Response: The Department worked with the TAC to develop an implementation plan for this final-form rulemaking. Most provisions will be deferred for 1 year following the effective date of this final-form rulemaking. In addition, compliance schedules will be used to allow more time for capital improvements or to implement more complex operational changes.

 2. In the preamble and RAF to the final-form rulemaking, the Board should provide specific estimates of all the costs associated with compliance and an explanation of how the estimates were derived. In addition, the Board should provide further explanation concerning the benefits of the final-form rulemaking compared to the costs.

Response: The Department has updated the cost information in this preamble and the RAF based on comments received. Updated information includes costs to the regulated community as well as potential savings from the prevention of public health crises due to waterborne illnesses.

 3. In the preamble of the final-form rulemaking, the Board should explain the reasonableness of requiring weekly monitoring and how the potential benefits outweigh any costs associated with it.

Response: After considerable discussion, the TAC Board issued final recommendations that the weekly monitoring frequency should be retained for two reasons: 1) weekly monitoring helps ensure continuous disinfection and improves public health protection; and 2) the collection of at least four samples per month allows a water system to have one sample below the minimum level and still be in compliance. If systems were to take fewer than four samples per month, any one sample below the minimum level would put the system out of compliance immediately. Finally, it was determined that weekly monitoring should not be a hardship because water system personnel are already onsite on a daily basis collecting daily entry point samples. These same personnel would be able to grab a weekly disinfectant residual sample within the distribution system.

 4. In the preamble of the final-form rulemaking, the Board should explain what specific public health issue is being addressed by the proposed disinfectant residual that is not currently being handled by the Revised TCR or is not a premise plumbing concern. The Board should also explain what measures exist to safeguard against increases in DBPs.

Response: Based on an assessment of 5.434 million samples, the EPA found that a lower rate of both total coliform and fecal coliform/E. coli positives occurred as the free or total chlorine residual increased to higher levels. This relationship between chlorine residuals and occurrence of total coliform and fecal coliform/E. coli positives was similar to results reported by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (Ingels, 2015). In addition, this relationship is consistent with the findings of LeChevallier, et al. (1996) which stated that disinfectant residuals of 0.2 mg/L or more of free chlorine, or 0.5 mg/L or more of total chlorine, are associated with reduced levels of coliform bacteria. (Both of these studies were discussed in the preamble of the proposed rulemaking.) Based on this data, the EPA determined that a detectable concentration of disinfectant residual in the distribution system may not be adequately protective of public health due to microbial pathogens. This is based on concerns about analytical methods and the potential for false positives (Wahman and Pressman, 2015). According to the EPA, maintaining a disinfectant residual above a set numerical value in the distribution system may improve public health protection from a variety of pathogens.

 Regarding the ability of water systems to increase disinfectant residual levels to 0.2 mg/L and still meet DBP limits, data from other states shows that simultaneous compliance can be achieved with both rules. In addition, several case studies were described in this preamble regarding systems that have participated in the Department's Distribution System Optimization Program. These systems have been able to achieve simultaneous compliance by implementing operational changes and other lower cost measures.

 The Department continues to believe that the large majority of systems will be able to achieve compliance with both rules because: 1) the large majority of systems already deliver water that meets disinfectant residual levels of ≥0.15 mg/L; and 2) for the remaining systems that do not currently meet a residual of ≥0.15 mg/L throughout the distribution system, many will be able to meet the requirement through operational changes or lower cost measures.

 5. The fiscal analysis provided in the RAF indicates that the total estimated cost to the regulated community is $823,500. The regulated community believes the Department has overestimated the number of water suppliers that would be in compliance with the proposed residual and has underestimated capital and operational costs. For example, Philadelphia Water estimated $25 million dollars in capital costs and $2.5 million dollars in annual operating and maintenance costs. The Borough of Carlisle estimates capital costs ranging from $115,000 to $190,000 to potentially comply with a 0.2 mg/L free chlorine requirement. IRRC asked that as the Board developed this final-form rulemaking that they reach out to the regulated community to gain a better understanding of the potential costs associated with the new requirements and include the revised costs in the RAF submitted with this final-form rulemaking.

Response: The Department updated the cost information in this preamble and the RAF based on comments received.

 6. In the preamble of the final-form rulemaking, the Board should explain why public notification is needed when the minimum disinfectant residual is not maintained in the distribution system and why the benefits of a notice outweigh any potential costs associated with such notice.

Response: Under 40 CFR 141.203(a) (relating to Tier 2 public notice—form, manner, and frequency of notice), a Tier 2 Public Notice is required for failure to meet the disinfectant residual treatment technique in the distribution system. The Commonwealth must be at least as stringent as 40 CFR 141.203(a). However, this final-form rulemaking is not anticipated to substantially increase the number of Tier 2 Public Notices. A violation does not occur unless the water system fails to meet the minimum level in more than 5% of samples for 2 consecutive months. The Department would expect that most water systems will be able to make operational changes (that is, increase flushing, and the like) after the first monthly failure and improve water quality ahead of the next monthly monitoring period. It should be the exception, not the norm, that water systems fail to meet the minimum level for 2 consecutive months.

 7. IRRC noted that the Board asked for comments with references to studies, reports or data comparing whether HPC less than 500 provides the same level of public health protection as a disinfectant residual of 0.2 mg/L. In the preamble of the final-form rulemaking, the Board should explain its rationale for deleting this provision. IRRC will consider the Board's response to comments and changes made to this subsection during the review of the final-form rulemaking to determine whether it is in the public interest.

Response: References or studies were not provided by the public. The Department has not found any studies that HPC is an equivalent standard when compared to a disinfectant residual level of 0.2 mg/L. The majority of states with disinfectant residual standards of 0.2 mg/L or greater do not use HPC as an ACC. For these reasons, the Department is not allowing the use of HPC for compliance purposes. However, water suppliers are encouraged to continue to use HPC as an operational parameter to help inform proper operation of distribution systems.

 8. The Board stated that proposed amendments were in response to the EPA comments to obtain primacy for LT2. Water dispensing unit operators commented that adding the HPC test alongside the Total Coliform test is duplicative and adds unnecessary costs. They further point out the drinking water standard for HPC is geared toward public water systems treating nonpotable surface water or GUDI and that it should not apply to water dispensing units that receive already treated municipal water. The Board should explain in the RAF and preamble of this final-form rulemaking the reasonableness of requiring water dispensing units to meet the same disinfection residual requirements as public water systems.

Response: The EPA recognizes bulk water hauling and vended water systems as public water systems under the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act and its regulations. Vended water systems that use purchased surface water shall comply with the various surface water treatment rules. Systems using surface water shall maintain a disinfectant residual in the water delivered to consumers. Since most vended water systems strip chlorine out of the water to improve taste, these systems are unable to comply with the Federal and State requirements. These systems generally retreat the water with ultraviolet or ozone, which does not provide a residual. Therefore, the only option for these systems is to monitor for and comply with the HPC alternative compliance criteria.

 9. The EPA submitted comments that identified several instances when the bottled water and vended water systems, retail water facilities, and bulk water hauling systems (BVRB) monitoring provisions are inconsistent with Federal regulations and must be changed to obtain primacy. The EPA also sought clarification on the BVRB entry point residual. IRRC will review the Board's response to the EPA's comments and any revisions made to this section in its review of the final-form rulemaking to determine whether it is in the public interest.

Response: Revisions have been made to ensure consistency with Federal rules and to maintain primary enforcement authority. Refer to Section E for more information about the revisions.

References

 Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (April 2014). ''Draft—Minimum Distribution System Disinfectant Residuals: Chlorine Residual Values Reported from Within Drinking Water Distribution Systems.''

 Department of Environmental Protection, Pennsylvania Drinking Water Information System (PADWIS) online database.

 EPA (December 2016). ''Six-Year Review 3 Technical Support Document for Microbial Contaminant Regulations.'' EPA 810-R-16-010.

 EPA, Enforcement and Compliance History Online database.

 LeChevallier, M. W., et al. (1996). ''Full-Scale Studies of Factors Related to Coliform Regrowth in Drinking Water.'' Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 62(7), p. 2201.

 Wahman, D. G. and Pressman, J. G. (2015). ''Distribution System Residuals—Is 'Detectable' Still Acceptable for Chloramines.'' Journal—American Water Works Association, 107(8), p. 53.

E. Summary of Changes to the Proposed Rulemaking

§ 109.202. State MCLs, MRDLs and treatment technique requirements

 Proposed subsection (c)(1)(ii)(B) was revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 Proposed subsection (c)(4) was renumbered as subsection (c)(6) and revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 Subsection (c)(5) was renumbered as subsection (c)(7) and revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 The proposed amendment to subsection (d) was withdrawn because it was included in the Revised TCR final-form rulemaking published at 46 Pa.B. 6005 (September 24, 2016).

§ 109.301. General monitoring requirements

 Paragraph (1)(i)(D) was revised in response to public comments to clarify that the existing disinfectant residual requirements for filtered surface water and GUDI systems will remain in effect until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Paragraph (1)(i)(E) was added in response to public comments to defer the compliance date of the new disinfectant residual requirements until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Paragraph (1)(i)(E)(II)—(IV) was revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 Paragraph (1)(i)(E)(V) was added in response to TAC comments to allow the use of online analyzers for disinfectant residual monitoring and recording in the distribution system. Online analyzers are permitted so long as the units are validated for accuracy.

 Paragraph (1)(v) and (vi) was revised in response to public comments to clarify that water suppliers shall calculate the log inactivation at least once per day during expected peak hourly flow.

 Paragraph (2)(i)(E) was revised in response to public comments to clarify that the existing disinfectant residual requirements for unfiltered surface water and GUDI systems will remain in effect until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Paragraph (2)(i)(F) was added in response to public comments to defer the compliance date of the new disinfectant residual requirements until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Paragraph (2)(i)(F)(II)—(IV) was revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 Paragraph (2)(i)(F)(V) was added in response to TAC comments to allow the use of online analyzers for disinfectant residual monitoring and recording in the distribution system. Online analyzers are permitted so long as the units are validated for accuracy.

 Paragraph (6)(vii)(D) was revised to correct a misspelled word.

 Paragraph (13) was revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 Paragraph (13)(i)(A) and (B) was revised in response to public comments to defer the effective date of the new disinfectant residual requirements until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Proposed paragraph (13)(i)(A)—(C) was renumbered as paragraph (13)(i)(B)(I)—(III).

 Paragraph (13)(i)(B)(I) was revised to correct a cross-reference.

 Paragraph (13)(i)(B)(IV) was added to clarify that compliance determinations will be made in accordance with § 109.710 (relating to disinfectant residual in the distribution system).

 Paragraph (13)(i)(B)(V) was added in response to TAC comments to allow the use of online analyzers for disinfectant residual monitoring and recording in the distribution system and to be consistent with paragraphs (1)(i)(E)(V) and (2)(i)(F)(V). Online analyzers are permitted so long as the units are validated for accuracy.

§ 109.408. Tier 1 public notice—categories, timing and delivery of notice

 Subsection (a)(2) was revised to correct the cross-reference to § 109.301(7)(ii)(C) (relating to general monitoring requirements) to include subclauses (IV) and (V).

 Subsection (a)(6)(iii) was revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration'' and in response to public comments to clarify that Tier 1 public notice is required for a failure to maintain the minimum entry point disinfectant residual for more than 4 hours and either a failure to calculate the log inactivation, or a failure to meet the minimum log inactivation for more than 4 hours.

§ 109.701. Reporting and recordkeeping

 Subsection (a)(8) was revised to clarify and renumber the requirements regarding submission of the sample siting plan, for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration'' and to incorporate comments from the TAC to identify several items to be included in the sample siting plan, including whether mixing zones exist, the system implements a free chlorine burn and whether the system uses online analyzers.

 This section was also revised to add certain reporting requirements regarding these sample siting plan items.

§ 109.710. Disinfectant residual in the distribution system

 Subsections (a) and (b) were revised and subsection (c) was added in response to public comments to defer the compliance date of the new disinfectant residual requirements until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Subsections (c) and (d) were added in response to TAC comments to address measurements for mixing zones and free chlorine burns and to clarify when free or total, or both, chlorine residual should be monitored.

 Existing subsections (b)—(d) were renumbered as subsections (d)—(f).

 Subsection (d) was revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration.''

 Subsection (e) was revised in response to TAC comments to allow additional monitoring to be included in the compliance calculations.

 Subsection (e)(1) and (2) was revised in response to TAC comments to allow additional monitoring to be included in the compliance calculations and to clarify that public water systems that use surface water or GUDI sources must comply with the Federal and State treatment technique requirement of no more than 5% of samples out of compliance.

 Proposed subsection (e)(3) and (4) was renumbered as subsection (e)(4) and (5) and subsection (e)(3) was added in response to TAC comments to clarify how compliance will be determined when both free and total disinfectant residual measurements are reported.

 Subsection (e)(5) was revised to correct a cross-reference.

 Subsection (e)(6) was added in response to TAC and public comments to clarify that the Department may approve an alternate compliance schedule if the water supplier submits a written request with supporting documentation within 1 year of the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

§ 109.716. Nitrification control plan

 Proposed § 109.715 (relating to nitrification control plan) was renumbered as § 109.716 in this final-form rulemaking because § 109.715 (relating to seasonal systems) was added by the Revised TCR published at 46 Pa.B. 6005.

 Subsection (a) was revised in response to TAC comments to defer the compliance date of the nitrification control plan until 1 year after the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

§ 109.1003. Monitoring requirements

 Subsection (a)(1)(ix)(A) was revised to cross-reference the monitoring requirements in § 109.301(12)(ii) in response to EPA comments to be at least as stringent as the Federal Stage 2 DBPR for bulk hauling, retail and vended water systems that meet the conditions of clause (D) or (E) (that is, systems that meet the definition of a community or nontransient noncommunity water system).

 Subsection (a)(1)(ix)(C) was added in response to EPA comments to include language that is at least as stringent with the Federal Stage 2 DBPR that identifies the MCL compliance calculations for total trihalo-methanes and five haloacetic acid compounds to obtain primary enforcement authority for the Stage 2 DBPR.

 The Editor's Note in subsection (a)(1)(xi) was revised. This subparagraph was also amended and proposed subsection (a)(1)(xi)(A)—(C) was deleted in response to EPA comments to include language that is at least as stringent as the Federal rule that identifies the Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level compliance calculations for chlorine dioxide.

 Subsection (a)(1)(xii)(B)(II) was revised to be consistent with existing language in § 109.301(12)(iv)(B)(II) that identifies the specific requirements to qualify for reduced bromate monitoring to be at least as stringent as the Federal Stage 2 DBPR.

 The Editor's Note in subsection (a)(1)(xiii) and (xiv) was revised. These subparagraphs were also revised for consistent use of the phrase ''residual disinfectant concentration'' and in response to EPA comments that the entry point residual disinfectant concentration should be 0.20 mg/L to be consistent with subparagraph (xiii) and § 109.202(c) (relating to State MCLs, MRDLs and treatment technique requirements).

 Subsection (a)(2)(iv) was revised to clarify when compliance is required based on the effective date of this final-form rulemaking.

 Subsection (b)(2) was revised in response to EPA comments that daily chlorite measurements may be conducted by a person meeting the requirements of § 109.1008(c) (relating to system management responsibilities) to be consistent with § 109.304(c) (relating to analytical requirements).

 Subsections (d) and (e) were amended in response to the EPA comments for clarity to cross-reference the monitoring requirements in § 109.301 to be at least as stringent as the Federal rules for bulk hauling, retail and vended water systems that meet the definition of a community or nontransient noncommunity water system.

§ 109.1008. System management responsibilities

 Proposed subsections (g) and (h) were renumbered as subsections (i) and (j) because subsections (g) and (h) were added by the Revised TCR published at 46 Pa.B. 6005.

F. Benefits, Costs and Compliance

Benefits

 This final-form rulemaking will affect all 1,949 community water systems and those noncommunity water systems that have installed disinfection (746) for a total of 2,695 public water systems. These public water systems serve a total population of 11.3 million people.

 This final-form rulemaking is intended to reduce the public health risks and associated costs related to waterborne pathogens and waterborne disease outbreaks. Costs related to waterborne disease outbreaks are extremely high. In 2008, a large Salmonella outbreak caused by contamination of a storage tank and distribution system and no disinfectant residual within the municipal drinking water supply occurred in Alamosa, CO. The outbreak's estimated total cost to residents and businesses of Alamosa using a Monte Carlo simulation model (10,000 iterations) was approximately $1.5 million (range: $196,677—$6,002,879) and rose to $2.6 million (range: $1,123,471—$7,792,973) with the inclusion of outbreak response costs to local, state and nongovernmental agencies, and City of Alamosa health care facilities and schools. This investigation documents the significant economic and health impacts associated with waterborne disease outbreaks and highlights the potential for loss of trust in public water systems following these outbreaks. See ''Economic and Health Impacts Associated with a Salmonella Typhimurium Drinking Water Outbreak—Alamosa, CO, 2008,'' http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23526942.

 Communities in this Commonwealth will benefit from: 1) the avoidance of a full range of health effects from the consumption of contaminated drinking water such as acute and chronic illness, endemic and epidemic disease, waterborne disease outbreaks and death; 2) the continuity of a safe and adequate supply of potable water; and 3) the ability to plan and build future capacity for economic growth and ensure long-term sustainability.

Compliance Costs

Disinfectant residual monitoring at the entry point

 It is estimated that 114 of 352 plants (or ~30%) may be using paper chart recorders. Paper chart recorders can record measurements to two decimal places provided the proper scale and resolution is used. In cases where the requisite scale and resolution are not possible, an upgrade to electronic recording devices would cost approximately $1,500. It is estimated that 11 systems (10%) may need to upgrade to electronic recording devices. The estimated cost is 11 systems × $1,500 = $16,500.

 This cost should not be prohibitive for filter plants, and the use of electronic devices offers several advantages. Advantages of using electronic recording devices include improved data reliability, faster and more comprehensive data analysis, better data resolution, elimination of the need for interpolating trace values from a chart, cost savings through the elimination of consumables (pens and chart paper) and reductions in errors associated with transferring analog data to a spreadsheet for recordkeeping or reporting purposes.

Disinfectant residuals in the distribution system

 It is anticipated that the large majority of water systems will be able to comply with this requirement with little to no capital costs because many of these systems are already meeting a disinfectant residual of ≥0.15 mg/L. In this Commonwealth, 1,949 community water systems are required to provide and maintain disinfection treatment. Of these systems, 1,298 (67%) are required to collect only 1 disinfectant residual measurement each month. An additional 232 systems are only required to collect 2 measurements each month. In total, 1,530 systems (79%) are only required to collect 1 or 2 disinfectant residual measurements each month, which means the average result reported each month for the large majority of systems is essentially the same as the actual sample results.

 The Department reviewed the summary data (distribution system disinfectant residual average result values) from January 2012 to May 2017 for the 1,949 community water systems.

 • During this period, 165,328 average result values were reported; of these records, 154,623 average result values (93.5%) were at or above 0.15 mg/L.

 • For the systems that are required to conduct only 1 or 2 measurements each month, 136,743 average result values were reported; of these records, 126,406 average result values (92.4%) were at or above 0.15 mg/L.

 • For the systems that only conduct 1 measurement each month, 116,900 average result values were reported; of these records, 107,366 (91.8%) were at or above 0.15 mg/L.

 The following table shows the number of community water systems and the number of average result summary records submitted for each population group.


Community Water System Disinfectant Average Result by Population Category

Population Group Number of Samples Required Number of Public Water Supplies Total
POPL1
Total
Number of Records
Number of Results
< 0.15
Number of Results
>= 0.15
<252 1 9 172 300 14 286
25—1,000 1 1,290 311,515 116,600 9,520 107,080
1,001—2,500 2 231 381,322 19,843 803 19,040
2,501—3,300 3 86 255,069 6,292 168 6,124
3,301—4,100 4 28 103,784 2,534 65 2,469
4,101—4,900 5 37 164,629 2,518 11 2,507
4,901—5,800 10 27 145,425 1,752 0 1,752
5,801—6,700 15 22 137,596 1,672 1 1,671
6,701—7,600 20 22 156,720 1,246 0 1,246
7,601—8,500 25 22 178,117 1,194 22 1,172
8,501—12,900 30 46 469,925 3,311 34 3,277
12,901—33,000 35 69 1,436,581 4,333 66 4,267
>33,000 >40 60 7,628,402 3,733 1 3,732
Total
1,949 11,369,257 165,328 10,705 154,623

1 Total POPL is the total population served for the population category, based on the community water system population in PADWIS. The Revised TCR required water systems to submit a revised sampling plan which included updated population numbers in accordance with existing EPA guidance. The community water system population served includes nontransient and transient consumers.

2 These community water systems triggered applicability under the SDWA because each system provides water to 15 or more service connections.

 An additional 621 noncommunity water systems with disinfection treatment are currently required to maintain a disinfectant residual in the distribution system. Of these 621 water systems, 598 (96%) are only required to collect 1 or 2 residual measurements each month; 554 (89%) are only required to conduct 1 measurement each month.

 Therefore, the Department believes it is appropriate to use the average result data, and that the data indicate that most water systems are already in compliance with these minimum disinfectant residual requirements.

 Systems may need to increase the frequency of or improve the effectiveness of existing operation and maintenance best management practices, such as flushing, storage tank maintenance, cross-connection control, leak detection, and effective pipe replacement and repair practices, to lower chlorine demand and meet disinfectant residual requirements at all points in the distribution system.

 Some systems with very large and extensive distribution systems may need to install automatic flushing devices, tank mixers or booster chlorination stations to achieve ≥0.15 mg/L (which rounds to 0.2 mg/L) at all points in the distribution system. As a result of public comments, the Department revised its capital expense estimates and added annual operational expense estimates as follows:

Type of Facility Capital Expenses Annual Expenses
Automatic flushing device $2,500 $750
Tank mixer $75,000
Booster chlorination station $250,000 $10,000

 It is estimated that 25% of community water systems serving over 25,000 people, or ~20 systems, may need to install automatic flushing devices, tank mixers or booster chlorination stations. Of these 20 systems:

 • Twelve water systems may need to install up to ten automatic flushing devices for capital costs of up to $25,000 and annual expenses of up to $7,500 per system. The total cost for 12 systems is estimated to be up to $300,000 in capital costs and up to $90,000 in annual expenses.

 • Four water systems may need to install up to two tank mixers for capital costs of up to $150,000 per system. The total cost for four systems is estimated to be up to $600,000 in capital costs.

 • Four systems may need to install up to four booster chlorination stations for capital costs of up to $1 million and annual expenses of up to $40,000 per system. The total cost for four systems is estimated to be up to $4 million in capital costs and up to $160,000 in annual expenses.

 Costs for small systems are not expected to increase because most small systems are already maintaining adequate disinfectant residuals (0.40 mg/L) as required by the Groundwater Rule. Further, with regard to operating costs, it is unlikely costs to small systems would increase because § 109.304 specifies that certain parameters (including turbidity and disinfectant residuals) may be analyzed by an appropriately certified operator or a person using a standard operating procedure as specified in the Water and Wastewater Systems Operators' Certification Act (63 P.S. §§ 1001—1015.1). Small water systems that are required to install and maintain disinfection (under either the Surface Water Treatment Rule or the Groundwater Rule) are currently required to measure the disinfectant residual at the entry point at least once per day, so a procedure is in place for conducting daily disinfectant residual measurements. The weekly distribution system measurements may be conducted by the same person.

 Total estimated costs to the regulated community are as much as $4.9 million in capital costs and up to $250,000 in annual operational expenses. Capital costs are one-time costs expected to be split over the first 3 years. Annual operational expenses are not expected to begin until year 2.

Estimate of Fiscal Savings and Costs
Current FY FY +1 FY +2 FY +3 FY +4 FY +5
Savings $ $ $ $ $ $
Regulated community 0 1,500,000 1,500,000 1,500,000 1,500,000 1,500,000
Local and state costs 0 1,100,000 1,100,000 1,100,000 1,100,000 1,100,000
Total savings 0 2,600,000 2,600,000 2,600,000 2,600,000 2,600,000
Costs $ $ $ $ $
Regulated community 0 1,630,000 1,880,000 1,880,000 250,000 250,000
Local and state costs 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total costs 0 1,630,000 1,880,000 1,880,000 250,000 250,000

 However, these costs are offset by the avoidance of waterborne disease outbreaks. If even one waterborne disease outbreak is avoided each year, the cost savings to the regulated community (residents and businesses) is estimated at $1.5 million, with an additional $1.1 million in savings to local, State and nongovernmental agencies, health care facilities and schools.

Compliance assistance plan

 The Safe Drinking Water Program utilizes the Commonwealth's Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST) Program to offer financial assistance to eligible public water systems. This assistance is in the form of a low-interest loan, with some augmenting grant funds for hardship cases. Eligibility is based upon factors such as public health impact, compliance necessity and project/operational affordability.

 The Safe Drinking Water Program has established a network of regional and Central Office training staff that is responsive to identifiable training needs. The target audience in need of training may be either program staff or the regulated community.

 In addition to this network of training staff, the Bureau of Safe Drinking Water has staff dedicated to providing both training and outreach support services to public water system operators. The Department's web site also provides timely and useful information for treatment plant operators.

 Finally, the Department also provides various tools and technical assistance to water systems through the Distribution System Optimization Program. The goal of distribution optimization is to sustain the water quality leaving the plant throughout all points in the distribution system. To further define distribution system optimization, ''optimization'' refers to improving drinking water quality to enhance public health protection without significant capital improvements to the water treatment plant or distribution system infrastructure.

 The distribution system is the last ''barrier'' for protecting public health, meaning the physical and chemical barriers that have been established are necessary to protect the public from intentional or unintentional exposure to contaminants after the water has been treated. Distribution system optimization focuses on two primary health concerns related to water quality within the distribution system—microbial contamination and DBP formation.

 If implemented, distribution system optimization will lead to increased public health protection through increased monitoring and operational oversight, resulting in improved physical protection and improved water quality for all customers.

Paperwork Requirements

 Paperwork requirements include: electronic reporting of log inactivation values on a monthly basis using existing formats; electronic reporting of additional disinfectant residual levels measured in the distribution system using existing formats; development of a disinfectant residual sample siting plan; and development of a nitrification control plan.

G. Sunset Review

 The Board is not establishing a sunset date for these regulations since they are needed for the Department to carry out its statutory authority. The Department will continue to closely monitor these regulations for their effectiveness and recommend updates to the Board as necessary.

H. Regulatory Review

 Under section 5(a) of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P.S. § 745.5(a)), on February 11, 2016, the Department submitted a copy of the notice of proposed rulemaking, published at 46 Pa.B. 857, to IRRC and the Chairpersons of the House and Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committees for review and comment.

 Under section 5(c) of the Regulatory Review Act, IRRC and the House and Senate Committees were provided with copies of the comments received during the public comment period, as well as other documents when requested. In preparing this final-form rulemaking, the Department has considered all comments from IRRC and the public.

 Under section 5.1(j.2) of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P.S. § 745.5a(j.2)), on February 21, 2018, this final-form rulemaking was deemed approved by the House and Senate Committees. Under section 5.1(e) of the Regulatory Review Act, IRRC met on February 22, 2018, and approved this final-form rulemaking.

I. Findings

 The Board finds that:

 (1) Public notice of proposed rulemaking was given under sections 201 and 202 of the act of July 31, 1968 (P.L. 769, No. 240) (45 P.S. §§ 1201 and 1202) and regulations promulgated thereunder, 1 Pa. Code §§ 7.1 and 7.2.

 (2) A public comment period was provided as required by law, and all comments were considered.

 (3) These regulations do not enlarge the purpose of the proposed rulemaking published 46 Pa.B. 857.

 (4) These regulations are necessary and appropriate for administration and enforcement of the authorizing acts identified in Section C of this order.

J. Order

 The Board, acting under the authorizing statutes, orders that:

 (a) The regulations of the Department, 25 Pa. Code Chapter 109, are amended by adding § 109.716 and amending §§ 109.1, 109.202, 109.301, 109.303, 109.408, 109.701, 109.710, 109.1002, 109.1003, 109.1004, 109.1008, 109.1103, 109.1107, 109.1202 and 109.1302 and to read as set forth in Annex A, with ellipses referring to the existing text of the regulations.

 (Editor's Note: Proposed § 109.715 was renumbered as § 109.716 in this final-form rulemaking.)

 (b) The Chairperson of the Board shall submit this order and Annex A to the Office of General Counsel and the Office of Attorney General for review and approval as to legality and form, as required by law.

 (c) The Chairperson of the Board shall submit this order and Annex A to the IRRC and the Senate and House Environmental Resources and Energy Committees as required by the Regulatory Review Act (71 P.S. §§ 745.1—745.14).

 (d) The Chairperson of the Board shall certify this order and Annex A, as approved for legality and form, and deposit them with the Legislative Reference Bureau, as required by law.

 (e) This order shall take effect immediately upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.

PATRICK McDONNELL, 
Chairperson

 (Editor's Note: See 48 Pa.B. 1482 (March 10, 2018) for IRRC's approval order.)

Fiscal Note: Fiscal Note 7-520 remains valid for the final adoption of the subject regulations.

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