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Public Water Supply Construction Permit (Type I)

The Drinking Water and Environmental Health Division (DWEHD), within the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (EGLE), has responsibility for issuing construction permits for public water supply under the authority of Public Act 399 of 1976, as amended. A public water supply must submit plans and specifications and obtain a construction permit before commencing construction of a waterworks system or an alteration, addition or improvement to a system. Community public water supplies must submit plans prepared by a licensed professional engineer to the appropriate EGLE district office. Permitting authority for non-community water supplies has been designated to local health departments in many areas of the state.

Any business wishing to connect to an existing public water supply must obtain approval from the supplier before the connection is made. If the supplier needs to install water mains as part of a project, then a construction permit must be issued to the supplier of water mains as part of a project then a construction permit must be issued to the supplier from EGLE (this page summarizes that approval process).


Public Water Supply Construction Permit


Safe Drinking Water Act, Public Act 399 of 1976, as amended


Supplying Water to the Public, Part 1 - Part 28, (R 325.11306)


 1.  Applicability (activities that require the permit)

Modification, addition, installation, or alteration of any community or non-community water works system, which affects flow, capacity, system service area, source, treatment, or reliability

 2.  Pre-Application Requirements
  • Provide for a determination that the plans and specifications are complete and adequate to protect the public health. For new systems, a capacity assessment is performed to ensure that the proposed water supplier will have adequate technical, financial, and managerial capability to operate and maintain the system.
  • The issued construction permit will expire unless construction or alteration commences within two years from date of issuance.
 3.  Application Submission Requirements
  • Community Public Water Supply: A Permit Application for Water Supply Systems must be submitted with the plans/specifications for approval.
  • The supplier of water or designated agent shall use "Recommended Standards for Water Works," prepared by the Great Lakes Upper Mississippi Board of State Sanitary Engineers, and EGLE, WB's "Suggested Practice for Waterworks" as guidance when preparing plans and specifications.
  • Non-community Public Water Supply: A completed Type II well permit application must be submitted for approval prior to construction.
  • The DWEHD may request an engineering report for the project or a basis of design, or both. For new community water systems, a Budget Plan must be submitted that includes annual budgets of anticipated revenues and expenditures for a five-year period. An Operations Plan that includes a Sampling Site Plan, a Contingency Plan, a Cross Connection Control Program, standard specifications and a plan for providing legal documents such as ordinances, policies, etc., must also be provided.
 4.  Procedures and Time-Frame for Obtaining Permit or Approval
  • Community Public Water Supply: Applicant submits permit application and plans and specifications to the WB.
  • Non-community Public Water Supply: Applicant submits completed well permit application to WB or designated local health department.
  • Final review and decision is made by DWEHD. For new water systems, a final inspection must be made to ensure that construction is in accordance with approved plans and all required submittals are acceptable before approval to commence operation will be granted.
 5.  Operational Requirements
  • All Community and non-transient, non-community, public water systems must be under the supervision of a properly certified operator.
  • The DWEHD will conduct routine and special investigations to verify that the water supply is adequately constructed and operated to protect the public health. Evaluations of all community public water systems are performed on a periodic basis. Any deficiencies identified are communicated by letter to the supplier, with a response requested to address the problems.
  • Community and non-community public water supplies are required to monitor for certain parameters on a routine basis.
  • Community public water supplies are required to submit monthly operation reports if water treatment is provided. Non-community public water supplies are required to submit monthly operation reports if water treatment is provided for public health purposes.
 6.  Fees

None specifically for construction permits. An annual water supply fee is assessed to all community and non-community public water systems based on type and population that supports all regulatory activities performed in the supervision of public water systems, including plan review and approval.

 7.  Appeal Process

There is no appeal process outlined in the Act or rules and appeals are uncommon because the Act and rules provide that plans be resubmitted until compliant with the appropriate standards. Appeals would be provided by law.

 8.  Public Input Opportunities

The decision makers for this approval process are the licensed District or Area Engineers in the DWEHD district offices. In situations where there is no licensed engineer in the district office, a licensed professional engineer supervisor issues the permit. Many of these permits are for replacement of infrastructure or improvement of service rather than new development, and there is no formal public involvement in this review and approval process, which typically is completed within two weeks. The public input opportunities that exist are at the local level as appropriate (land use planning, zoning, hearings, etc.) when the plans are being developed. In addition, extensive public input processes are sometimes associated with the funding source for the project. For example, there is an extensive formal public input process as related to projects funded through Michigan's State Drinking Water Revolving Fund.

E. Administrating Agency:
DWEHD, Field Operations, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, P.O. Box 30473, Lansing, Michigan 48909-7973