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Water: Safe Drinking Water Act

Alternative Monitoring Guidelines

The Alternative Monitoring Guidelines (formerly known as Permanent Monitoring Relief (PMR)), are being issued pursuant to the requirements of Section 1418 of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), as amended in August 1996.  States have the discretion to decide whether or not to adopt these guidelines.  States that elect to offer alternative monitoring must meet the requirements of Section 1453 of the SDWA to develop and obtain EPA approval of their source water assessment programs, and to complete a source water assessment for the systems that will use alternative monitoring.  Guidance for states to use in meeting the source water assessment requirements has also been issued pursuant to Section 1453 of the SDWA.

 These alternative monitoring provisions were developed in conjunction with an effort to revise the chemical monitoring regulations, which has been known as Chemical Monitoring Reform.  EPA expects to promulgate revisions to the chemical monitoring regulations in August, 1998.  EPA plans to incorporate these alternative monitoring guidelines into the chemical monitoring regulations, in order to consolidate the federal provisions for chemical monitoring in a single, comprehensive regulation.

 Before developing these provisions, EPA held three stakeholder meetings and then formed an EPA/State work group to evaluate the issues raised by the stakeholders.  EPA issued these guidelines in draft form on July 3, 1997, for public comment, and held public meetings in Denver, Chicago, and Washington D.C. to explain the provisions and solicit comments.  This document reflects the results of that process with respect to the alternative monitoring guidelines.

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