NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A1103A
SPONSOR: Jaffee (MS)
TITLE OF BILL: 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"
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
This bill mandates the testing of drinking water from private wells upon
the transfer of property.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 establishes the Private Well Testing Act.
Section 2 amends § 03-0315 of the ECL to include information gathered
under the private well testing program in DEC's geographic information
system created to track contaminated sites and water segments.
Section 3 amends § 206 of the public health law to authorize the Commis-
sioner of DOH to establish standards for the testing of privately owned
Section 4 amends subdivision 1 of § 1100 of the public health law by
adding private supplies of potable water to those waters for which the
commissioner may promulgate regulations.
Section 5 adds a new § 1110 to the public health law, establishing the
Private Well Testing Program and specifying the parameters that must be
tested for - including bacteria (total conform), nitrates; nitrites,
sodium, iron, manganese, pH, copper, chloride and all Volatile Organic
Compounds for which a maximum contaminant level has been established.
Section 6 amends the real property law, adding a new section 468. Every
contract for the sale of real property for which the potable water
supply is a private well shall include a Provision requiring as a condi-
tion of the sale, the testing of such water supply for at least those
contaminants specified in the bill.
Section 7 sets the effective date on the 180th day after it shall have
become law. Effective immediately, the addition, amendment and/or repeal
of any rule or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act
on its effective date are authorized and directed to be made and
completed on or before such effective date.
It is estimated that over 1 million homeowners in the State currently
utilize private wells for their drinking water. These residents may be
drinking contaminated water without knowing it as there is no current
statewide requirement for having private drinking water wells tested
ever. Several counties require such testing currently and would be
eligible to continue to require such a testing provided that their laws
are more stringent. After a similar law was passed in New Jersey in
2001, it was discovered that 1 in 4 private drinking water wells was
contaminated above state drinking water standards. To provide all citi-
zens in the state with information on the duality of their drinking
water, water from private wells should also be subject to the type of
testing done regularly for public water supplies. If this information is
provided upon the sale of property, where necessary, new homeowners may
be able to install any necessary treatment for their potable water.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
5/16/17 - Reported referred to Ways and Means
5/7/18 - Amended referred to Ways and Means
180 days from date of enactment. Effective immediately, the addition,
amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the
implementation of this act on its effective date are authorized and
directed to be made and completed on or before such effective date.