I, Robert C. Shinn, Jr., Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection (Department), pursuant to the authority vested in me by Executive Order No. 98, issued by Governor Christine Todd Whitman on August 5, 1999, and by the Water Supply Management Act, N.J.S.A. 58:1A-1 et seq., and its implementing regulations found at N.J.A.C. 7:19-1, previously issued Administrative Order No. 1999-08, imposing Phase I – Mandatory Restrictions governing water usage throughout the State of New Jersey. This Order is intended to amend and supplement the provisions of Administrative Order No. 1999-08. Except as specifically provided by amendment herein, the provisions of Administrative Order No. 1999-08 shall remain in effect.
In accordance with N.J.A.C. 7:19-13, the imposition of Phase I Mandatory Restrictions reflects the first step in the prioritized allocation of water supplies by the Department once a water emergency has been declared. Such restrictions primarily target the reduction of water usage connected with non-essential, outdoor activities, and every attempt is made to minimize impacts to commercial activities. While meaningful reductions in water demands have occurred due to widespread compliance with the mandatory restrictions and the exercise of voluntary water conservation efforts, I have determined that it is necessary to issue this amendatory and supplemental Order as a means of clarifying the restriction on water uses and to incorporate substantive revisions, as recommended by the Water Emergency Task Force. Due to the magnitude of the current drought conditions, as evidenced by the relative lack of precipitation statewide, declining water storage, and depleted ground water levels and stream flows, it is incumbent on all residents and visitors to fully comply in a cooperative effort to avoid a more serious water shortage and the need for further restrictions. These restrictions apply equally regardless of whether the source of supply is surface or ground water, which may include a pond, lake, river or stream, or from a public water supplier or a private well. Furthermore, nothing in Administrative Order No. 1999-08 or this Order shall be construed to preempt any local or county water use restrictions that are more stringent.
Based upon the ban on adjustable water uses set forth in the Emergency Water Allocation Regulations for a Phase I water emergency, N.J.A.C. 7:19-13.3, I undertake the following action in order to clarify the regulation of non-essential outdoor water uses in order to curtail demand and to otherwise help alleviate the severity of the water emergency.
The watering of grass areas is prohibited, except as provided below:
New lawn areas that have been seeded or sodded by a commercial contractor principally employed in such activity may be watered by any means for 30 days from the date of planting between 8:00 P.M. and 6:00 A.M., with watering not to exceed 45 minutes per area watered on any one day. Documentation to verify the date of planting shall be produced upon request by the appropriate authority(ies). This provision shall not apply to golf courses.
Grass areas may be watered after application of fertilizer, pesticide or herbicide by a licensed commercial contractor principally employed in such activity, for a period not to exceed 5 days from date of application between 8:00 P.M. and 6:00 A.M., with watering not to exceed 45 minutes per area watered on any one day. Documentation verifying the date of application shall be produced upon request by the appropriate authority(ies). This provision shall not apply to golf courses.
3. – 4. No Change.
The watering of plants, trees, shrubs, vegetable and flower gardens is prohibited by any means other than by bucket, can or hand-held hose equipped with a nozzle that will shut off automatically upon release. Alternative irrigation conservation technology, including emitter or drip tube devices but not including soaker hoses, may be used for watering, provided that the following conditions shall be met:
Watering is limited exclusively to plants, trees, shrubs, vegetable and flower gardens, and that watering devices are placed on a timer to operate between 12:00 midnight and 6:00 A.M., and
No puddling of water around plantings shall occur.
The watering of agricultural food crops is exempted at this time. Watering of sod at commercial sod farms and nursery stock at nurseries or retail outlets may be watered in accordance with the industry-wide conservation plan developed cooperatively by Rutgers Cooperative Extension, United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the New Jersey Department of Agriculture, ORwith sprinklers or other means as follows:
1. - 3. No Change.
The washing of any vehicles except ambulances and fire engines is prohibited, except by businesses engaged in car washing or in those instances where a threat to public health may exist as certified by the municipal health department. The following requirements shall be met by all businesses engaged in car washing:
1. - 5. No Change.
E. - I. No Change.
The use of water for outdoor recreational purposes is prohibited, excepted as follows:
1. No Change.
Clay tennis courts may be watered for no more than 10 minutes total each day between 8:00 P.M. and 6:00 A.M.
Newly constructed or installed swimming pools may be filled once upon completion. Swimming pools may also be drained for repair if conditions threaten the integrity of the pool and/or its supporting infrastructure, or, if deemed to be a public health or safety hazard, as certified by the local health department. In no case shall a pool be re-filled more than once, and every effort shall be made to collect and re-use water drained from the pool. Topping of pools in order to maintain the integrity of the circulation and filtration system(s) is permitted. For the purposes of this subsection, outdoor spas, jacuzzis and hot tubs shall be considered pools.
Athletic playing fields, including those used by professional, college/university and youth league sports teams, as well as those owned or operated by public and private schools and parks, may be watered, provided that:
Fields may only be watered between 8:00 P.M. and 6:00 A.M., with watering not to exceed 45 minutes per area watered on any one day;
No grass or dirt areas outside of the essential playing area may be watered; and
Voluntary water conservation measures shall be instituted to the maximum extent practicable.
K. No Change.
For the purposes of promoting the use of "non-potable" water as a substitute for potable water sources, where appropriate and in conjunction with effectuating the purposes of Administrative Order No. 1999-08 and this Order, I hereby authorize domestic treatment works to make available, for temporary use, final treated effluent which meets all of its New Jersey Pollutant Discharge Elimination Systems (NJPDES) permit requirements, as a substitute for potable water sources, under the following conditions:
The domestic treatment works must be in compliance with its existing NJPDES discharge permit and must obtain written approval from the Department’s Division of Water Quality prior to allowing the re-use of their effluent.
Discontinuance of the effluent discharge into the receiving water body shall not jeopardize the base flow of the receiving water, nor shall it impact downstream water supply withdrawals.
Recommended applications include: landscaping beds, street sweeping, nurseries, non-edible crops, horse tracks, golf courses, roadside plantings and mobile fire protection. The application of treated effluent shall not produce surface runoff or ponding. Individuals spraying the effluent should use proper care and precautions so as not to come in contact with or inhale the aerosoled water vapors.
Unless otherwise approved, prohibited applications include: residential lawns and other recreational areas, indoor use, edible crops, or any area where there is a high probability of immediate human contact.
Final treated effluent can only be sprayed in areas and at times, which would have limited or no public access.
Signs must be posted informing the public that the water being applied is final treated effluent.
Domestic treatment facilities shall compile a list of users, which shall include the name of user, date of pickup, number of gallons used, and location of disposal.
Reuse of final treated effluent shall not be considered as a basis for increasing capacity for treatment facilities.
If a water treatment facility finds it necessary to discharge to the surface and/or ground waters of the State in order to meet the needs of addressing the water emergency or to protect human health and the environment, the Department may authorize such discharge on a temporary, emergency basis. The Department may impose treatment and/or monitoring requirements within such authorization. No discharge shall commence until the Department’s authorization has been issued. The water treatment facility must file an application with the Department within ten (10) calendar days of having received the emergency authorization to begin the discharge.
Any person who shall violate any provision of Section I. of this Order or shall impede or interfere with any action ordered or taken pursuant to Section I. of this Order shall be subject to the penalties provided by law under N.J.S.A. 58:1A-1 et seq., N.J.S.A. App. A:9-49 et seq., and N.J.A.C. 7:19, which provide penalties ranging from a warning to a fine and/or imprisonment. Enforcement of these provisions and any subsequent Administrative Orders issued by the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection or Drought Coordinator pursuant thereto will be performed by municipal and county as well as State law enforcement agencies.
Any person who shall violate any provision of Section II. or III. of this Order or shall impede or interfere with any action ordered or taken pursuant to Section II. or III. of this Order shall be subject to the penalties provided by law under N.J.S.A. 58:10A-1 et seq., N.J.S.A. App. A:9-49 et seq., and N.J.A.C. 7:14A.
All Phase I - Mandatory Restrictions set forth in this Order shall take effect immediately and shall remain in effect until they are superseded by another Order or until the Governor of the State of New Jersey declares by Executive Order that a state of water emergency no longer exists. This Order amends and supplements, and is intended to be read and implemented in conjunction with, Administrative Order No. 1999-08. All other sections of Administrative Order No. 1999-08 not amended herewith continue in force unaltered.