Section 128-3.6 - Wastewater treatment plants

128-3.6 Wastewater treatment plants.
(a) Minimum requirements:
(1) Unless otherwise permitted by these rules and
regulations, the design, construction, or operation of a wastewater
treatment plant is prohibited where such design, construction, or operation
causes a discharge, or storage which is reasonably likely to lead to a
discharge, of sewage or sewage effluent into the environment (including
into groundwater), and which is reasonably likely to cause degradation of
surface water quality or of the water supply. It shall be an affirmative
defense under this subsection that such discharge, or storage likely to
lead to a discharge, is either permitted or not prohibited under federal
law, and is either permitted or not prohibited under state law.
(2) The design of new wastewater treatment plants, and the
plans and specifications resulting from that design, require the review and
approval of the Department. The construction of new wastewater treatment
plants shall be in conformance with the plans and specifications approved
by the Department.
(3) The design for an expansion or an alteration or
modification of new or existing wastewater treatment plants, and the plans
and specifications resulting from that design, require the review and
approval of the Department. The construction of the expansion or
alteration or modification shall be in accordance with the plans and
specifications approved by the Department.
(4) The owner or operator of a new or existing wastewater
treatment plant shall operate and maintain the wastewater treatment plant
in accordance with the operations and maintenance manual for the plant.
Such manual shall be prepared by the owner and approved by the Department.
(5) No new wastewater treatment plants with a surface
discharge, or expansion or alteration or modification of new or existing
wastewater treatment plants, shall cause a contravention of the water
quality standards set forth in Subpart 128-4 of these rules and regulations
or the phosphorus water quality values set forth in the New York State
Department of Environmental Conservation Technical and Operational Guidance
Series (TOGS) 1.1.1, Ambient Water Quality Standards and Guidance Values
(October 22, 1993).
(6) No part of any seepage unit or absorption field for a
subsurface discharge from a wastewater treatment plant shall be located
within the limiting distance of 100 feet of a watercourse or wetland or
within the limiting distance of 500 feet of a reservoir, reservoir stem, or
controlled lake.
(7) Wastewater treatment plants with surface discharges
into the watershed shall be capable of achieving 99.9 percent removal
and/or inactivation of Giardia lamblia cysts and 99.99 percent removal
and/or inactivation of enteric viruses.
(8) Wastewater treatment plants with either surface or
subsurface discharges within the watershed shall provide phosphorus removal
using the best treatment technology so that the wastewater treatment plant
is designed to be operated and maintained to meet the following
requirements:

SPDES Permitted Total
Total Flow Phosphorus Limit
(gallons/day) (mg/l)

<50,000 1.0
>50,000 and <500,000 0.5
>500,000 0.2

(9) Wastewater treatment plants with surface discharges to
intermittent streams in the watershed shall be operated and maintained to
meet the intermittent stream effluent limits set forth in the New York
State Department of Environmental Conservation Technical and Operational
Guidance Series (TOGS) 1.3.1, Total Maximum Daily Loads and Water
Quality-Based Effluent Limits (July 8, 1996) and New York State Department
of Environmental Conservation Technical and Operational Guidance Series
(TOGS) 1.3.1B, Total Maximum Daily Loads and Water Quality-Based Effluent
Limits, Amendments-Low and Intermittent Stream Standards (July 8, 1996),
provided however, that the effluent limit for a discharge of a pollutant to
an intermittent stream shall in no case be less stringent than the effluent
limit which would apply to the same discharge of the pollutant to the first
downstream perennial stream.
(10) Within one year of the effective date of these rules
and regulations, the owners of all existing wastewater treatment plants
shall submit to the Department for review and approval an operations and
maintenance plan and a schedule setting forth a plan for bringing the
wastewater treatment plant into compliance with all of the requirements of
this section. Any such plan that is disapproved by the Department shall be
revised and resubmitted to the Department for review and approval within
ninety (90) days after the initial disapproval. Owners of existing
wastewater treatment plants must secure final Department approval of such
operation and maintenance plans and such a schedule setting forth a plan
for bringing the plant into compliance by no later than eighteen (18)
months from the effective date of these rules and regulations, and must
complete all work in order for such plants to be brought into compliance
with the requirements of this section by no later than five (5) years from
the effective date of these rules and regulations or any extended period of
time approved by the Department upon good cause shown.
(11) Existing wastewater treatment plants with surface
discharges are prohibited from expanding if they are located in an area
where new wastewater treatment plants with surface discharges are
prohibited by these rules and regulations. This paragraph shall not apply
to existing wastewater treatment plants which discharge subsurface or the
expansion of existing wastewater treatment plants where the expanded
portion discharges subsurface.
(12) Existing wastewater treatment plants with surface
discharges may expand if they are located in an area where new wastewater
treatment plants with surface discharges are allowed by these rules and
regulations. The plans submitted to expand the wastewater treatment plant
shall meet all of the requirements of this section.
(13) Existing wastewater treatment plants with subsurface
discharges may expand. The expanded portion of such wastewater treatment
plants shall meet all of the design standards and other requirements of
this section.
(14) Any approval of a new or expanded wastewater treatment
plant issued by the Department shall expire and thereafter be null and void
unless construction is completed within five (5) years of the date of
issuance of such approval or any extended period of time approved by the
Department upon good cause shown. Following expiration of the approval,
the plans for the wastewater treatment plants may be resubmitted to the
Department for consideration for a new approval.
(b) Requirements for wastewater treatment plants located
within phosphorus restricted basins. No new wastewater treatment plants
with surface discharges, or expansions of existing wastewater treatment
plants with surface discharges, shall be allowed in a phosphorus restricted
basin. A variance from this provision may be sought in accordance with the
requirements set forth in section 128-6.1(d) of Subpart 128-6.
(c) Requirements for wastewater treatment plants located in
coliform restricted basins. No new wastewater treatment plants with
surface discharges, or expansions of existing wastewater treatment plants
with surface discharges, shall be allowed in a coliform restricted basin.
A variance from this provision may be sought in accordance with the
requirements set forth in section 128-6.1(d)(1) of Subpart 128-6.
(d) Treatment requirements for wastewater treatment plants
located within the 60 day travel time to intake.
(1) The map indicating the demarcation line for the
watershed areas that are located within the 60 day travel time to intake
appears in Appendix 128-A. Large detailed maps of such areas are available
to be reviewed by the public during business hours at the regional offices
listed in section 128-1.5 of Subpart 128-1.
(2) Within the 60 day travel time to the intake the
following requirements are applicable:
(i) New wastewater treatment plants with surface
discharges, or expansions of existing wastewater treatment plants with
surface discharges, are prohibited;
(ii) Existing wastewater treatment plants with SPDES
permitted surface discharges may continue to operate provided the treated
effluent is also subject to sand filtration, disinfection, phosphorus
removal, and microfiltration or a Department-approved equivalent technology
to microfiltration, as required by these rules and regulations;
(iii)New and existing wastewater treatment plants with
subsurface discharges may commence or continue to operate provided that the
treated effluent is also subject to sand filtration and phosphorus removal,
and for SPDES permitted discharges greater than 30,000 gallons per day
(gpd), disinfection, as required by these rules and regulations.
(e) Treatment requirements for wastewater treatment plants
located in the watershed and beyond the 60 day travel time to intake.
(1) The map indicating the demarcation line for the
watershed areas that are located beyond the 60 day travel time to intake
appears in Appendix 128-A. Large detailed maps of such areas are available
to be reviewed by the public during business hours at the regional offices
listed in section 128-1.5 of Subpart 128-1.
(2) Beyond the 60 day travel time to the intake the
following requirements are applicable: (i) New wastewater treatment
plants with surface discharges into a reservoir, reservoir stem, controlled
lake, or wetland are prohibited;
(ii) All new surface discharges into a watercourse, and any
existing wastewater treatment plants with SPDES permitted surface
discharges may commence or continue to operate, provided that the treated
effluent is also subject to sand filtration, disinfection, phosphorus
removal, and microfiltration or a Department-approved equivalent technology
to microfiltration, as required by these rules and regulations;
(iii) New and existing wastewater treatment plants with
subsurface discharges may commence or continue to operate, provided that
the treated effluent is also subject to sand filtration and phosphorus
removal, and for SPDES permitted discharges greater than 30,000 gallons per
day (gpd), disinfection, as required by these rules and regulations.
(f) Design, Operation and Maintenance Requirements
(1) This subdivision (f) shall apply to new and existing
wastewater treatment plants.
(2) The criteria used by the Department to approve the
design for any new wastewater treatment plant or the portion of any new or
existing wastewater treatment plant which is being expanded or altered or
modified shall be all applicable requirements of law, including the
standards set forth in the following documents:
(i) "Design Standards for Wastewater Treatment Works,
Intermediate Sized Sewerage Facilities", New York State Department of
Environmental Conservation (1988); and
(ii) "Recommended Standards for Wastewater Facilities",
Great Lakes--Upper Mississippi River Board of State Public Health and
Environmental Managers (1990).
(3) The Department shall not approve a wastewater treatment
plant, or any proposed expansion of a wastewater treatment plant, which
discharges within the watershed, if there is inflow or infiltration into a
sewerage system connected to such wastewater treatment plant which causes
either:
(i) The State authorized flow limit of the wastewater
treatment plant to be exceeded; or
(ii) The strength of the sewage influent to the wastewater
treatment plant to be diluted to a level that adversely affects the
efficacy of the State permitted and Department approved treatment process.
(4) The Department shall not approve a wastewater treatment
plant, or any proposed expansion of a wastewater treatment plant, if there
is an indication of exfiltration from a sewerage system connected to such
wastewater treatment plant.
(5) All wastewater treatment plants shall meet the
following requirements to insure uninterrupted reliable operation:
(i) All wastewater treatment plants shall provide standby
power units sufficient to run the entire plant in order to ensure
uninterrupted reliable operation in the event of utility power failure and
these units shall be equipped with an alarm and automatic start-up
capability;

(ii) All vital plant structures, mechanical and electrical
equipment of new or existing wastewater treatment plants located or
designed within the 100-year flood plain shall be protected from damage
from a 100-year flood that may affect or disrupt its function or general
performance. Such structures and equipment shall remain fully operational
in a 25-year flood.
(iii) The disinfection system shall be provided with backup
units, an alarm and equipment that will insure processing of the plant flow
without interruption and the backup electrical and/or mechanical equipment
shall be equipped with automatic start-up capability.
(iv) In wastewater treatment plants with a SPDES permitted
surface discharge of 50,000 gpd or less, there shall be a minimum of two
(2) sand filters, each rated to handle the full plant flow. In wastewater
treatment plants with a SPDES permitted surface discharge greater than
50,000 gpd, there shall be a minimum of three (3) sand filters, each rated
to handle one-half (1/2) of the full plant flow;
(v) All wastewater treatment plants must be equipped with
a flow meter that includes a recording device; and
(vi) All alarm systems shall require telemetering to a
central location with around the clock operator presence or, in the
alternative, to an operator's residence so that a response shall be
initiated immediately.
(6) The following requirements shall apply to all
wastewater treatment plants with subsurface discharges or absorption fields
located in the watershed:
(i) The loading rate to the absorption trench may be 25
percent greater than that required under the design standards listed in
subdivision (f)(2) of this section;
(ii) An additional area of at least 50 percent of the
absorption field area shall be set aside as a reserve field area;
(iii) At a minimum, one percolation and one deep hole test
shall be performed in both the primary absorption field area and in the
reserve absorption field area. An applicant shall notify the Department in
writing at least 7 business days prior to performance of such tests, and
specify the location and the time of the tests. At the option of the
Department, a Department representative may witness these tests; and
(iv) The use of pumping, mechanical dosing or other
mechanical devices requires a pump chamber equipped with an alarm to
indicate malfunction, a backup pump, and any other safety features required
by the Department to prevent overflow.
(7)(i) All owners or operators of Department approved
wastewater treatment plants in the watershed shall, prior to commencement
of construction of such wastewater treatment plants, deposit with the
Department a performance bond for the completion of the construction of the
wastewater treatment plant and an additional bond or other guaranty for the
payment of labor and material furnished in the course of such construction.
Upon completion of construction and payment of labor and materials, such
bonds or other guaranties shall be released. Additionally, prior to
commencement of operation of the approved wastewater treatment plant, the
owners or operators of the approved wastewater treatment plant shall
provide a surety bond, or a reasonable guaranty, that they shall continue
to maintain and operate the system for a period of five years. The surety
bond or guaranty shall be in an amount sufficient to insure the full and
faithful performance by the owners or operators of the wastewater treatment
plants, and their successors and assigns, with regard to their obligation
to properly maintain and operate the wastewater treatment plants in
accordance with all requirements of law and according to the conditions set
by the Department in its approval; provided, however, that such surety bond
or guaranty shall not be required by the Department where the owners or
operators of the wastewater treatment plant have provided a surety bond or
guaranty for the maintenance and operation of the wastewater treatment
plant to the local governing body, in an amount necessary to insure the
full and faithful performance of the operation and maintenance of the
wastewater treatment plant; provided further, that such surety bond or
guaranty shall not be required where the owner or operator of the
wastewater treatment plant is a village, town, county or city. The
Commissioner may, at his or her discretion, increase the amount of such
surety bond or guaranty, but not to exceed an amount necessary to insure
the full and faithful performance of the operation of the wastewater
treatment plant. All such bonds shall be prepared on the forms of bonds
authorized by the City of New York and shall have as a surety such company
or companies that shall be approved by the City of New York and are
authorized to do business in the State of New York.
(ii) The Commissioner may authorize the provision of other
security, including cash, if the Commissioner finds that compliance with
the bond requirement is not reasonably possible and the public interest
would be served by such authorization. The alternative security shall be
deposited with the Comptroller of the City of New York.
(iii) Whenever an owner or operator of a wastewater
treatment plant deposits securities or other obligations with the City of
New York, in lieu of a performance bond, it shall be with the understanding
that the Comptroller of the City of New York, or his or her successors, may
sell and use the proceeds thereof for any purpose for which the principal
or surety on such bond would be liable under the terms of the approval. If
money is deposited with the Comptroller, the owner or operator of the
wastewater treatment plant shall not be entitled to receive interest on
such money from the City of New York.
(8) The transfer of any approval or permit issued by the
Department for the construction and/or operation of any wastewater
treatment plant shall require Department approval. The Department shall
approve such transfer provided that the transferee demonstrates sufficient
financial, technical, and professional capability to construct, operate
and/or maintain the subject wastewater treatment plant in compliance with
applicable laws, as cited in section 128-3.6(a)(1), the provisions of these
rules and regulations, and the terms and conditions of any approval or
permit granted by the Department.
(g) Application requirements.
(1) An application for review and approval of a new
wastewater treatment plant shall include the following information:
(i) A Department application form and an Environmental
Assessment Form (EAF Long Form);
(ii) A facility plan which shall include: a description of
the project, flow and waste load estimations, site characteristics,
evaluation of existing system, if applicable, and existing local or related
facilities, including any related water quality problems, examination of
the project service area, estimation of growth, examination of alternative

solutions and explanation of why the proposed option was chosen, analysis
of potential impacts, analysis of hydraulic and organic capacities
(including Waste Assimilation Capacity analysis), description of unit
processes and explanation of sizing, operation under emergency conditions,
and sludge processing, storage and disposal methods, estimation of costs,
proposed financing methods and anticipated user fees, outline of operation
and maintenance requirements (including cost projections), and regulatory
review and permitting requirements;
(iii)An engineering plan which shall include: location plan,
site plan, schematic of plant hydraulic profile, piping schematic,
location, dimension and elevations of plant process units and
appurtenances, mechanical system layout, electrical system layout, and
erosion and sediment control and stormwater management plan.
(iv) Construction specifications, including material and
equipment specifications;
(v) Construction schedule;
(vi) In cases where a draft environmental impact statement
("DEIS") is to be prepared for an activity and the DEIS complies with the
requirements of Article 8 of the Environmental Conservation Law and the
regulations promulgated thereunder, and includes the information required
in this part, the DEIS may constitute all or part of the application for
review and approval under this part. In such case the applicant will
provide the Department with notice and a copy of the DEIS; however, no
approval shall be issued by the Department prior to review of the FEIS and
issuance of a finding to approve; and
(vii) A copy of the draft SPDES permit, if any, and, when
issued, a copy of the final SPDES permit. Copies of any revisions to the
draft SPDES permit shall also be provided to the Department as they become
available to the applicant.
(2) An application for review and approval of an expansion
or of an alteration or modification of a new or existing wastewater
treatment plant shall include all of the information required in
subdivision (g)(1) of this section where applicable, and shall either:
(i) Certify that the wastewater treatment plant is in
compliance with all of the requirements of this section, and all
requirements of its SPDES permit; or
(ii) Certify that a schedule for the wastewater treatment
plant to come into compliance with the requirements of this section and
with the requirements of its SPDES permit has been submitted to the
Department for approval. A copy of such compliance schedule shall be
attached to the application.
(3) An application for review and approval of a plan for
bringing an existing wastewater treatment plant into compliance with the
requirements of this section shall include the operation and maintenance
manual for the wastewater treatment plant.
(4) All approvals for new or expansion of existing
wastewater treatment plants are conditioned on the applicant s submission
of record drawings and an operation and maintenance manual once
construction is complete.

Effective Date: 
Wednesday, July 8, 1998
Doc Status: 
Complete