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AB-1605 Maximum contaminant level: nitrate: replacement water.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/27/2017 09:00 PM
AB1605:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 27, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 18, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 28, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1605


Introduced by Assembly Member Caballero

February 17, 2017


An act to add Chapter 5.1 (commencing with Section 13366) to Division 7 of the Water Code, relating to water quality.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1605, as amended, Caballero. Maximum contaminant level: nitrate: replacement water.
Under the Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act, the State Water Resources Control Board and the California regional water quality control boards are the principal state agencies with authority over matters relating to water quality. Under the act, the state board and the regional boards prescribe waste discharge requirements for the discharge of waste that could affect the quality of the waters of the state. Under the act, each regional board, with respect to its region, coordinates with the state board and other regional boards, with respect to water quality control matters, including the prevention and abatement of water pollution and nuisance. The act requires, upon the order of a regional board, a person who has caused or permitted, causes or permits, or threatens to cause or permit any waste to be discharged or deposited where it is, or probably will be, discharged into the waters of the state and creates, or threatens to create, a condition of pollution or nuisance, to clean up the waste or abate the effects of the waste, or, in the case of threatened pollution or nuisance, to take other remedial action.
Existing law, the California Safe Drinking Water Act, requires the state board to administer provisions relating to the regulation of drinking water to protect public health and vests with the state board specified responsibilities. The act requires the state board to adopt primary drinking water standards and maximum contaminant levels for contaminants in drinking water.
This bill would prohibit a person or entity providing replacement water, as defined, to address drinking water that exceeds the maximum contaminant level for nitrate in groundwater from being deemed to have caused pollution or a nuisance, or from being liable for negligence or trespass, if certain conditions are applicable. met.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Chapter 5.1 (commencing with Section 13366) is added to Division 7 of the Water Code, to read:
CHAPTER  5.1. Replacement Water Program

13366.
 For purposes of this chapter only, “replacement water” means water that has been provided to persons or communities that meets drinking water standards. Replacement water may include, but is not limited to, bottled water, water treated by in-home treatment units, water treated by wellhead treatment units, or surface water supplies that are provided in exchange for groundwater supplies.

13366.5.
 (a) A person or entity providing replacement water in accordance with this chapter to address drinking water that exceeds the maximum contaminant level for nitrate in groundwater shall not be deemed to have caused pollution or a nuisance, public or private, to groundwater under Part 3 (commencing with Section 3479) of Division 4 of the Civil Code or this division, be liable for negligence under Section 1714 of the Civil Code, or be liable for trespass under common law if all of the following apply:

(1)The person or entity participates in an activity that has been authorized by the state board or regional board pursuant to a replacement water settlement agreement and the state board or regional board retains oversight and involvement.

(2)The person or entity is subject to waste discharge requirements or a conditional waiver adopted pursuant to Section 13263 or 13269.

(3)The the person or entity is a signatory to a replacement water settlement agreement the Interim Replacement Water Settlement Agreement with the state board or regional board. board that became effective on March 29, 2017, and is taking at least one of the following actions:

(b)A person or entity is deemed to be participating in an activity that has been authorized by the state board or regional board pursuant to a replacement water settlement agreement for the purposes of this section through any one of the following actions:

(1) Providing replacement water.
(2) Contributing to the cost of providing replacement water into a mitigation fund.
(3) Participating in an alternative compliance project or program that has been authorized by the state board or regional board in its water quality control plan.
(4) Compliance with any other compliance option specified in the Interim Replacement Water Settlement Agreement.

(c)

(b) This section applies for the duration of the applicable settlement agreement. Interim Replacement Water Settlement Agreement that became effective on March 29, 2017, but shall not be in effect more than two years after the commencement date of that agreement.