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Somerset County Department of Health monitors and enforces  NJDEP regulations to protect the quality of drinking water from ground and surface water sources.  Sanitary Surveys and investigations are conducted  to ensure compliance of public non-community water systems (PNCWS). Schools, restaurants, office buildings and other non-residential sites using well water may be subject to New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection rules to conduct periodic sampling to ensure a safe drinking water supply for visitors and employees. Sampling information is available to the public through Drinking Water Watch.

EPA has defined three types of public water systems:

  • Community Water System (CWS): A public water system that supplies water to the same population year-round.

  • Non-Transient Non-Community Water System (NTNCWS): A public water system that regularly supplies water to at least 25 of the same people at least six months per year. Some examples are schools, factories, office buildings, and hospitals which have their own water systems. 

  • Transient Non-Community Water System (TNCWS): A public water system that provides water in a place such as a gas station or campground where people do not remain for long periods of time.

Drinking Water Watch is a searchable database from NJDEP to obtain background information about a water system, monitoring schedules, water quality information, and enforcement data.   Helpful to the water systems (responsible parties and licensed operators) and consumers.

Raw Water Tap Requirements

For new and existing public water systems, a ground water source tap is required to be installed prior to any treatment, storage/pressure tanks, and/or distribution components and immediately followed by a check valve. This will allow a water system to obtain a representative sample from the ground water source that is not influenced by other water system components. The New Jersey Division of Water Supply & Geoscience has identified the failure to have a Ground Water Source Tap immediately followed by a check valve as a significant deficiency under the Ground Water Rule.

The document linked below gives more detail on the requirements for installation, examples of  appropriate placement, and sample collection requirements.

Alteration of a Well Water System

Any new construction, repairs, or alterations to your existing supply well and water distribution system require approval from the Somerset County Department of Health before the modifications are to begin. As a public non-community (PNC) water system registered with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), it is important that all modifications meet the standards of the Safe Drinking Water Act. As the local administrative authority acting on behalf of the NJDEP, the Somerset County Department of Health requires advance notification and must approve the project prior to commencing any of the following activities, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 7:10-12.1 et seq.

The form linked below must be submitted with copies of the pump or treatment device’s owner’s manual, an updated plumbing diagram, and pump or treatment device specifications.

Point of Use (POU) filters

Point of Use (POU) filters are those used in filtration systems that are attached directly to water faucets, inserted into refrigerators for water and ice dispensers, or are inserted into water pitchers and bottles. By purchasing accredited third-party certified filters, consumers can increase their level of confidence in regards to the lead and particulate reduction capabilities of their water system.

The Somerset County Department of Health does not recommend or certify any specific brand or manufacturer of these products. Consumers are encouraged to use the link below to learn more about POU filters and third party accreditation processes.

Water Pollution Control Act

Pollution of ground and surface water endanger public health and the environment. The policy of the Water Pollution Control Act is to restore, enhance, and maintain the integrity of the state waters, protect public health, aquatic life, and ecological  value.

The Somerset County Department of Health investigates water pollution complaint from citizens and NJDEP. Examples of these investigations include unpermitted discharge to surface or ground water, improper construction or decommissioning of wells, and septic system malfunctions.