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Compliance and Enforcement
Compliance and Enforcement
EGLE monitors the compliance of community water supplies with the Michigan Safe Drinking Act and other applicable federal/state regulations, including Michigan's Lead and Copper Rule (LCR).
EGLE plays that role in a variety of ways, including reviewing records and test results provided by community water supplies and conducting site inspections of water treatment plants and other infrastructure. On some occasions, EGLE engages in activities like joint site inspections with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). As documents linked below indicate, EGLE conducted such a joint inspection with the EPA of the city of Benton Harbor water supply in September and October 2021.
Providing technical assistance to help community water supplies comply with legal requirements-from LCR sampling protocols to proper plant maintenance and treatment of their source water-represents a significant and important element of the EGLE Drinking Water and Environmental Health Division's (DWEHD's) work.
When EGLE determines that a community drinking water supply has failed to comply with legal requirements under our jurisdiction, the Department takes enforcement action. Issuing a Violation Notice (VN) to the supply is a common tool used in that process. Among other information, a VN describes each violation that was identified and the action the water supply is required to take in response. EGLE may fine a community water supply in conjunction with issuing a VN.
When a community water supply faces significant compliance challenges with potential impacts to public health, EGLE may escalate enforcement. This allows EGLE and the water supply to develop a mutually acceptable alternative compliance timeline. This may include entering into a consent agreement signed by both parties. As referenced in the documents linked below, the city of Benton Harbor is currently under an Administrative Consent Order (ACO)-an agreement it co-signed with EGLE in 2019 to address its noncompliance challenges. This ACO has been updated and amended over time.
NOTE: An action level exceedance (ALE) for lead or copper is not a violation of the law. An ALE triggers additional actions a water supply must take-and failing to take those actions may constitute a violation-but the ALE itself is not a violation.
The documents linked in the table below are recent EGLE records related to compliance and enforcement activities involving the city of Benton Harbor water supply. As they become available, we will add additional documents to this table.