Drinking Water Regulations
The Public Water System Supervision Group (PWSS) within the New Mexico Environment Department Drinking Water Bureau (DWB) is responsible for oversight of New Mexico public water systems to ensure their compliance with all regulations pertaining to drinking water, including federal and state laws and regulations. Enforcement actions are taken by the PWSS when water systems fail to maintain compliance.
Drinking Water Laws & Regulations
The primary regulations that guide New Mexico public water systems include the federal “Safe Drinking Water Act” and the New Mexico Environmental Improvement Act. New Mexico Mutual Domestic Water Consumer Associations must also abide by the New Mexico Sanitary Projects Act.
The DWB currently takes a step by step escalated approach to our Enforcement process. Public water systems may receive Notice of Violations (NOV) for violating certain aspects of the State or Federal drinking water regulations. If the Public Water System accumulates multiple NOV that are not adequately resolved in a timely manner, those NOVs will be escalated to an Administrative Order (AO). If the Public Water System does not comply with the terms of the AO, the AO will then be escalated to an AO with Penalties. In some cases, the Public Water System issued an immediate AO with Penalties if the violation(s) directly threatens public health and the system has been acting on bad faith. Violation data is entered into the Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS) database.
Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS)
SDWIS contains information about public water systems as well as water quality data and violations of State or Federal drinking water regulations. Most states report drinking water quality data and violations to the EPA by entering its data into SDWIS. DWB Data stewards within the within the PWSS Group are responsible for administering the SDWIS database in New Mexico.