What can local governments do to protect source water?
Local governments play a primary role in protecting a community’s drinking water supply. In many cases, public drinking water systems are not operated by local governments and do not have the authority needed to protect drinking water sources. Therefore, municipal and county governments have the responsibility and legal authority to enact and enforce drinking water source protection measures.
Develop A Source Water Protection Plan
Local governments can develop a standalone source water protection plan that outlines the actions the community will take to protect its drinking water source. They have the authority to manage potential source water contamination within their jurisdictions and can protect drinking water sources by including ground water and source water protection as a component in their comprehensive plans.
Implement Protective Regulations
Wellhead protection overlay zones, riparian buffers, storm water management ordinances, and land-use controls are all ways that local governments can protect delineated source water areas.