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Basic Information about the NDWAC

Responsibilities of the Council

The National Drinking Water Advisory Council (NDWAC) provides EPA with advice and recommendations related to the national drinking water program. EPA engages the NDWAC on key issues and allows EPA to gain broad perspectives from states, NGOs, academia and others, regarding the delivery of safe drinking water to the nation's consumers.

All NDWAC full council and NDWAC working group meetings are open to the public. Dates and locations of meetings are posted in the Federal Register in the Public Notice – Meeting Announcements section.

The NDWAC's charter, shown below, identifies the NDWAC's role and objectives. The charter is renewed every two years.

1. Committee's Official Designation (Title):
National Drinking Water Advisory Council

2. Authority:
This charter renews the NDWAC in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C. App.2.

NDWAC is in the public interest and supports the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or Agency) in performing its duties and responsibilities. The Council was created by Congress on December 16, 1974, as part of the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974, P.L. 93-523, 42 U.S.C. § 300j-5.

3. Objectives and Scope of Activities:
NDWAC will provide advice, information, and recommendations on matters related to activities, functions, policies, and regulations of the EPA Designated Federal Official under the Safe Drinking Water Act, including:

  1. Providing practical and independent advice on matters and policies related to drinking water quality and public health protection.
  2. Maintaining an awareness of developing issues and problems in the drinking water area and advising EPA on emerging issues.
  3. Advising on regulations and guidance as required by the Safe Drinking Water Act.
  4. Recommending policies with respect to the promulgation of drinking water standards.
  5. Recommending special studies and research.  
  6. Assisting in identifying emerging environmental or health problems related to potentially hazardous constituents in drinking water.
  7. Proposing actions to encourage cooperation and communication between EPA and other governmental agencies, interest groups, the general public, and technical associations and organizations on drinking water quality.
  8. Analyzing sustainable infrastructure issues with special emphasis on the security of the nation's drinking water systems.

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4. Description of Committees Duties:
The duties of NDWAC are to provide advice to EPA.

5.Official(s) to Whom the Committee Reports:
The NDWAC will report its advice and recommendations to the EPA Administrator.

6. Agency Responsible for Providing the Necessary Support:
EPA will be responsible for financial and administrative support. Within EPA, this support will be provided by the Office of Water.

7. Estimated Annual Operating Costs and Work Years:
The estimated annual operating cost of NDWAC is $252,000 which includes approximately 1.0 person-years of support.

8. Designated Federal Officer:
A full-time or permanent part-time employee of EPA will be appointed as the Designated Federal Official (DFO). The DFO or a designee will be present at all meetings of the advisory committee and subcommittees. Each meeting will be conducted in accordance with an agenda approved in advance by the DFO.

The DFO is authorized to adjourn any meeting when he or she determines it is in the public interest to do so and will chair meetings when directed to do so by the official to whom the committee reports.

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9. Estimated Number and Frequency of Meetings:
NDWAC expects to meet two (2) times a year. Meetings are expected to occur approximately once every six (6) months or as needed and approved by the Designated Federal Officer (DFO). 

As required by the Safe Drinking Water Act, EPA will pay members’ travel and per diem expenses when members are “away from their homes or regular places of business in the performance of services for the Council.” 42 U.S.C. § 300j-5(c).

As required by FACA, the Council will hold open meetings unless the EPA Administrator determines that a meeting or a portion of a meeting may be closed to the public in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552b(c). Interested persons may attend meetings, appear before the committee as time permits, and file comments with the NDWAC.

10. Duration and Termination:
As provided in the Safe Drinking Water Act, “section 14(a) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (relating to termination) shall not apply to the Council.” 42 U.S.C. § 300j-5(d). However, the Charter is subject to the renewal process upon the expiration of each successive two-year period following the date of enactment of the Act establishing this Council.

11. Member Composition:
NDWAC will be composed of fifteen (15) members who will serve as Special Government Employees (SGE). Members are appointed by EPA’s Administrator after consultation with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.

As required by the Safe Drinking Water Act: 

  • Five (5) members will be appointed from appropriate State and local agencies concerned with public water supply and public health protection; 
  • Five (5) members will be appointed from private organizations or groups demonstrating an active interest in the field of water hygiene and public water supply, of which two (2) members will represent small, rural public water systems; and
  • Five (5) members will be appointed from the general public. 42 U.S.C. § 300j-5(a).

In addition, up to five (5) Federal employees will be appointed as technical advisors to the Council which may include:

  • Individuals representing the EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB),
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Environmental Health and National Center for Infectious Diseases, and
  • Such additional Federal officials as the EPA deems necessary for the NDWAC to carry out its function.

Technical advisors may participate in Council discussions, but not Council deliberations.

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12. Subgroups:
EPA, or NDWAC with EPA’s approval, may form NDWAC subcommittees or working groups for any purpose consistent with this charter.  Such subcommittees or working groups may not work independently of the chartered committee and must report their recommendations and advice to the chartered Council for full deliberation and discussion. Subcommittees or working groups have no authority to make decisions on behalf of the chartered Council and they cannot report directly to the Agency.

13. Recordkeeping:
The records of the committee, formally and informally established subcommittees, or other subgroups of the committee, will be handled in accordance with:

  • National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) General Records Schedule 26, Section 2,
  • EPA Records Schedule 181, or
  • Other approved agency records disposition schedule.

Subject to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552, these records will be available for public inspection and copying, in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act.

November 13, 2014
Agency Approval Date

December 10, 2014
Date Filed with Congress

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NDWAC Roster

Updated December 5, 2016  
Carrie M. Lewis, Chairperson Superintendent
Milwaukee Water Works
841 N. Broadway – Room 409
Milwaukee, WI 53202
William Alley
Director of Science and Technology
National Ground Water Association
4731 Winona Avenue
San Diego, CA 92115
Jeanne-Marie Bruno
Vice-President/General Manager
Central Basin Liberty Utilities
P.O. Box 7002
9750 Washburn Road
Downey, California 90241-7002
Ann Marie Chischilly
Executive Director
Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals
Northern Arizona University
P.O. Box 15004
Flagstaff, AZ 86011-5004
Marilyn Christian
Environmental Health Programs
Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services
101 South Richey, Suite G
Pasadena, Texas 77506
Cathy P. Kellon
Green Infrastructure Program Director
Geos Institute
4549 SE 60th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97206
James McCauley
Lower Brule Rural Water System
P.O. Box 205
Lower Brule, South Dakota 57548
Wilmer Melton, III
Director of Public Works
City of Kannapolis
Post Office Box 1199
Kannapolis, North Carolina 28082-1199
Randy A. Moore
Iowa American Water
5201 Grand Avenue
Davenport, Iowa 52807
Howard M. Neukrug
Principal, CASE Environmental LLC
225 St. Mark’s Square
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Sarah Pillsbury
Drinking Water and Groundwater Bureau
New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services
29 Hazen Drive, P.O. Box 95
Concord, New Hampshire 03302
James Salzman
Donald Bren Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law
Bren School of Environmental Science and Management
University of California, Santa Barbara
4418 Bren Hall
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-5131
Mark S. Sanchez
Executive Director
Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority
P.O. Box 568
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87103
June Anne Swallow, P.E.
Rhode Island Department of Health
Center for Drinking Water Quality
3 Capitol Hill, Room 209
Providence, RI 02908
Chris J. Wiant
President and CEO
Caring for Colorado Foundation
4100 E. Mississippi Avenue
Suite 605
Denver, Colorado 80246
Dr. Max Zarate-Bermudez, MS, MPH, Ph.D.
NCEH/Environmental Health Services Branch
Centers for Disease Control
Department of Health and Human Resources
4770 Buford Highway, NE, Mailstop: F60
Atlanta, GA. 30341-3724
Dr. Kimberly L. Jones., Ph.D.
Professor and Chair
Department of Civil Engineering
Howard University
Washington, D.C. 20059
Dr. Vincent Hill, Ph.D., PE
Acting Branch Chief
Waterborne Disease Prevention Branch
Division of Foodborne, Waterborne and Environmental Diseases
Centers of Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Rd, NE, Mailstop C-09
Atlanta, GA 30329