There is one summary for this bill. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in Senate (03/10/1994)

Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments of 1994 - Amends the Safe Drinking Water Act to require the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, in the case of specified contaminants listed in the Federal Register for which national primary drinking water regulations have not been issued, to: (1) publish maximum contaminant level (MCL) goals and issue such regulations for those contaminants that occur in drinking water at a level of public health concern; and (2) eliminate monitoring, compliance, and enforcement requirements for those contaminants that do not occur in drinking water at levels of public health concern. (Current law requires the promulgation of such goals and regulations for specified numbers of such contaminants by certain dates.)

(Sec. 4) Directs the Administrator to promulgate such goals and regulations for new contaminants every five years.

Requires the Administrator to identify best technology treatment techniques that may be used to meet MCLs for public water systems serving fewer than 1,000, between 1,000 and 10,000, and more than 10,000 people.

Directs the Administrator to promulgate national primary drinking water regulations for radionuclides, disinfection and corrosion byproducts, and sulfate.

(Sec. 7) Revises provisions concerning variances from such regulations to permit the issuance of a variance by a State only if the water system cannot afford to install the best available technology to meet the MCL and it is not feasible for the system to connect with another source of water that will meet the standards. Requires variances to be reviewed by the State at least every three years.

(Sec. 8) Repeals provisions that authorize States to exempt public water systems from requirements respecting MCLs or treatment techniques.

(Sec. 9) Prohibits treated drinking water from being removed from a public water system or routed through any device or pipes outside the system and returned to the system. Includes such action in the definition of "tampering," a violation for which criminal penalties are imposed. Makes such prohibition inapplicable to pipes and devices totally within the control of one or more public water systems or to connections between water mains.

(Sec. 11) Requires (currently, authorizes) the Administrator to conduct research relating to diseases and other impairments resulting from contaminants in drinking water or to the provision of a safe supply of drinking water. Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 12) Extends the authorization of appropriations for grants for State public water system supervision programs.

(Sec. 13) Requires the Administrator to promulgate revised regulations every five years that list up to 30 unregulated contaminants to be monitored by public water systems.

Directs the Administrator to assemble a national drinking water occurrence data base to include information on the occurrence of regulated and unregulated contaminants.

(Sec. 16) Requires the Administrator to make capitalization grants to States to establish State drinking water treatment revolving loan funds.

Reserves the following amounts from such grants: (1) one percent for financial assistance to Indian tribes for the improvement of public water systems; and (2) .5 percent to respond to public health emergencies. Sets aside specified dollar amounts for rural small drinking water systems technical assistance programs and drinking water health effects research. Authorizes the Administrator to make grants for public water system improvement to the District of Columbia and specified U.S. territories.

Requires 15 percent of amounts in a State loan fund to be available solely for assistance to public water systems that serve fewer than 10,000 individuals.

Directs States to prepare intended use plans prior to receiving grants. Requires priority for the use of funds to be given to systems that are in violation of a national primary drinking water regulation.

Requires the Administrator to submit quadrennially to the Congress a survey of the needs of facilities eligible for State loan fund assistance.

Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 17) Permits the Administrator to provide financial assistance to minority communities with economic hardship for eligible wastewater treatment projects.

(Sec. 18) Authorizes the Administrator to transfer funds to another Federal agency or award grants to any appropriate entity or border State (Arizona, California, New Mexico, or Texas) to provide assistance to low-income communities (colonias) in such areas that lack basic sanitation facilities for: (1) the conservation, development, use, and control of water; and (2) the construction or improvement of sewers, wastewater treatment works, and essential community facilities. Requires such funds to be used in communities subject to a significant health risk attributable to lack of access to a water supply system or wastewater treatment works.

Authorizes appropriations.