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Monitoring Reduction Program


Most Floridians drink water from one of the more than 7,000 Public Water Systems (PWS) in the state. Public Water Systems range from large community systems such as those found in the city of Jacksonville to non-transient non-community systems such as schools and factories to very small transient non-community systems like campgrounds.

Federal and state agencies recognize the potential for and the mechanisms through which these systems may become contaminated. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection, in response to the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act, requires public water systems to test samples of finished water from each PWS. Water samples are taken from the entry point to the distribution system and at various points within the distribution system. They are then tested for a variety of chemical and bacteriological contaminants. Analytical results are then submitted to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection for review. Sampling and reporting frequencies vary according to facility category, contaminant type and sampling history.

Monitoring Relief
A decade of experience under the 1986 Safe Drinking Water Act revealed that not all public water systems need to monitor for all contaminants, all the time. In addition, responsible science-based studies support reduction in monitoring frequencies. Monitoring relief for Florida PWSs is accomplished through the use of Reduced Monitoring Waivers. The Reduced Monitoring Waiver program saves money for public water systems and their customers by reducing or eliminating unnecessary testing of your drinking water.

Vulnerability Assessments
To qualify for monitoring relief a system is assessed to determine if it vulnerable to contamination. The first step of the vulnerability assessment process requires the Florida Department of Environmental Regulation staff to review historical monitoring data to determine if a system has any history of contamination. Next, a review area is established around each well head and is evaluated to determine vulnerability. Systems determined to have no significant history of contamination or review area vulnerabilities may then be issued a monitoring waiver. At this time the Department only grants waivers to contaminants in the synthetic organic contaminant group.

Last updated: September 30, 2014

  2600 Blair Stone Road M.S. 3500   Tallahassee, Florida 32399   850-245-8336 (phone) / 850-245-8356 (fax) 
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