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AB-1529 Cross-connection control and backflow protection.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 09/08/2017 09:00 PM
AB1529:v94#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  September 08, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  September 07, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  July 18, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  May 01, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 19, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1529


Introduced by Assembly Member Members Thurmond and Caballero

February 17, 2017


An act to amend Section 116810 of, and to add Sections 116555.5, 116801, and 116812 to, the Health and Safety Code, relating to drinking water.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1529, as amended, Thurmond. Cross-connection control and backflow protection.
Existing law, the California Safe Drinking Water Act, requires the State Water Resources Control Board to administer provisions relating to the regulation of drinking water to protect public health, including, but not limited to, conducting research, studies, and demonstration projects relating to the provision of a dependable, safe supply of drinking water, enforcing the federal Safe Drinking Water Act, adopting regulations, and conducting studies and investigations to assess the quality of private domestic water wells.
Existing law requires any person who owns a public water system to ensure that the system does certain things, including, but not limited to, that it will not be subject to backflow under normal operating conditions. Existing law, to ensure that testing and maintenance of backflow prevention devices are performed by persons qualified to do testing and maintenance, authorizes local health officers to maintain programs for certification of backflow prevention device testers and requires the certification program to be consistent with backflow protection regulations adopted by the state board. A violation of these provisions, or of an order by a local health officer pursuant to these provisions, is a misdemeanor.
Existing regulations establish standards for a backflow prevention device and cross-connection control.
This bill would require the state board, on or before January 1, 2020, to update its backflow protection and cross-connection control regulations and to set forth uniform, statewide standards for the certification of backflow prevention device testers and cross-connection control specialists, as provided. The bill would require a public water system to implement a cross-connection control program that complies with applicable regulations and the standards set forth by the state board.
The bill would require valid and current certifications for cross-connection inspection and testing or backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance that were determined by the State Department of Public Health to demonstrate competency before January 1, 2016, to be approved California-specific certifications either until the state board promulgates regulations for certified backflow prevention device testers and cross-connection control specialists, or until January 1, 2020, whichever comes first. The bill would, under certain conditions, prohibit a water supplier from refusing to recognize statewide certifications that meet standards set by regulations of the state board.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 116555.5 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:

116555.5.
 A public water system shall implement a cross-connection control program that complies with applicable regulations and with standards adopted by the board pursuant to Section 116801.

SEC. 2.

 Section 116801 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:

116801.
 (a) On or before January 1, 2020, the State Water Resources Control Board shall update its backflow protection device and cross-connection control regulations and shall set forth uniform, statewide standards for the certification of backflow prevention device testers and cross-connection control specialists. In developing these regulations, the State Water Resources Control Board shall seek consistency with California Building Standards Code requirements and shall incorporate applicable national specifications, published standards, or model code language, where appropriate.
(b) The State Water Resources Control Board shall encourage certifications that are integrated with state-approved apprenticeship programs, workforce development programs, and community college training programs. A person who maintains a program for certification of backflow prevention device testers or cross-connection control specialists that is integrated with state-approved apprenticeship programs, workforce development programs, or community college training programs may request a determination by the State Water Resources Control Board that the certification meets the standards set forth pursuant to subdivision (a).

SEC. 3.

 Section 116810 of the Health and Safety Code is amended to read:

116810.
 To ensure that testing and maintenance of backflow prevention devices are performed by persons qualified to do testing and maintenance, local health officers may maintain programs for certification of backflow prevention device testers. The local health officer may suspend, revoke, or refuse to renew the certificate of a tester, if, after a hearing before the local health officer or his or her designee, the local health officer or his or her designee finds that the tester has practiced fraud or deception or has displayed gross negligence or misconduct in the performance of his or her duties as a certified backflow prevention device tester. The local health officer may collect fees from certified testers to offset the cost of the certification program provided pursuant to this section. The certification standards shall be consistent with the backflow protection regulations adopted by the State Water Resources Control Board.

SEC. 4.

 Section 116812 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:

116812.
 (a) Valid and current certifications for cross-connection inspection and testing or backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance that were determined by the State Department of Public Health to demonstrate competency in cross-connection inspection and testing or backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance before January 1, 2016, shall be approved California-specific certifications either until the State Water Resources Control Board promulgates regulations for certified backflow prevention device testers and cross-connection control specialists, or until January 1, 2020, whichever comes first.
(b) If contractors, building operators, building owners, or property owners are required to employ, contract with, or subcontract with a certified backflow prevention device tester or a certified cross-connection control specialist to receive water service, then the water supplier shall not refuse to recognize statewide certifications that meet the standards set by regulations of the State Water Resources Control Board.
(c) Nothing in this section prohibits an agency, water supplier, or regulated public utility from rejecting the adequacy of a specific cross-connection or backflow prevention device inspection, test, or maintenance activity for reasons other than the identity of the certification provider.