Water Utility Coordinating Committees
The General Assembly finds that an adequate supply of potable water for domestic, commercial and industrial use is vital to the health and well-being of the people of the state. Readily available water for use in public water systems is limited and should be developed with a minimum of loss and waste. In order to maximize efficient and effective development of the state's public water supply systems and to promote public health, safety and welfare, the Department of Public Health shall administer a procedure to coordinate the planning of public water supply systems.
The Commissioner of Public Health, following the final priorities established pursuant to section 25-33e, shall convene a water utility coordinating committee (WUCC) for each public water supply management area to implement the planning process established by this section and sections 25-33g and 25-33h.
Each water utility coordinating committee shall prepare a coordinated water system plan in the public water supply management area. Such plan shall be submitted to the Commissioner of Public Health for his approval not more than two years after the first meeting of the committee. The plan shall promote cooperation among public water systems and include, but not be limited to, provisions for (1) integration of public water systems, consistent with the protection and enhancement of public health and well-being; (2) integration of water company plans; (3) exclusive service areas; (4) joint management or ownership of services; (5) satellite management services; (6) interconnections between public water systems; (7) integration of land use and water system plans; (8) minimum design standards; (9) water conservation; (10) the impact on other uses of water resources including water quality, flood management, recreation and aquatic habitat issues; and (11) acquisition of land surrounding wells proposed to be located in stratified drifts.
The WUCC shall prepare a coordinated water system plan and solicit comments thereon in accordance with public act 85-535. The coordinated plan and copies of comments shall be submitted to the commissioner within 24 months of the first meeting:
Commissioner of Public Health Approves Coordinated Water Supply Plans
On December 20, 2018, Department of Public Health Commissioner Raul Pino approved the coordinated water system plans for the Western, Central, and Eastern Water Utility Coordinating Committees.
These plans are the result of over 24 months of work by state agencies, local government and water utilities. The plans will ensure that smart planning decisions are made about the future of Connecticut’s drinking water and will guide the approximately 2,500 public water systems in Connecticut.
This collaborative effort will formalize the expansion of public water supplies, ensuring that future development is provided the best option for safe and adequate drinking water, while ensuring that Connecticut’s environmental resources and rural areas are protected. The plans also analyze other drinking water concepts important to Connecticut such as: water conservation, water rates, droughts, small water system viability and protection of drinking water supply sources.
Exclusive Service Areas
An Exclusive Service Area (ESA) is defined as an area where public water is supplied by one system. Numerous factors are considered in determining ESA designations in accordance with the regulations, including the following:
- Existing service areas;
- Land use plans, zoning regulations, and growth trends;
- Physical limitations to water service;
- Political boundaries;
- Water company rights as established by statute, special act, or administrative decision;
- System hydraulics, including potential elevations or pressure zones; and
- Ability of a water system to provide a pure and adequate supply of water now and into the future.
Establishment of boundaries for ESA holders is intended to ensure that safe and adequate drinking water is available to areas of the state where public water supply is needed. ESA designations are established based on the regulatory criteria noted above and are based upon the agreement by a utility or municipality to serve, as necessary, previously identified unserved areas in accordance with applicable state statutes and regulations.
Being an ESA holder is a commitment to ownership and service for newly constructed public water supply needs for community water systems (essentially, residential public water supply needs), and, in general, a right‐of‐first‐refusal for non‐community water systems (nonresidential) public water supply needs. An ESA designation therefore conveys both a right and a responsibility to provide public water service pursuant to applicable state law.
Exclusive Service Area Map (updated July 2018)
Changes to Exclusive Service Areas
Frequently Asked Questions - Exclusive Service Areas
Frequently Asked Questions - Exclusive Service Area Holders
General WUCC Information
Historic WUCC Information