Town of Abington, MA
Plymouth County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Abington as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 4-3-2006 ATM by Art. 8[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This Article also superseded former Art. I, Water Use Restrictions, adopted 4-30-2001 ATM by Art. 22, as amended.

§ 167-1 Authority.

This Bylaw is adopted by the Town under its police powers to protect public health and welfare and its powers under M.G.L. c. 40 § 21 et seq. and implements the Town's authority to regulate water use pursuant to M.G.L. c. 41 § 69B. This Bylaw also implements the Town's authority under M.G.L. c. 40 § 41A, conditioned upon a declaration of "Water Supply Emergency" issued by the Department of Environmental Protection.

§ 167-2 Purpose.

The purpose of this Bylaw is to protect and preserve the public health, safety and welfare whenever there is in force a state of water supply conservation or a state of water supply emergency by providing for enforcement of any duly imposed restrictions, requirements, provisions or conditions imposed by the Town or by the Department of Environmental Protection. This Bylaw is also intended to protect and preserve the public health, safety and welfare, by restricting and prohibiting unauthorized water use and/or unregistered water use by water users.

§ 167-3 Definitions.

PERSONS
Any individual, corporation, trust, partnership, association, or other entity which uses or is serviced by the Town's public water supply.
STATE OF WATER EMERGENCY
A state of water emergency declared by the Department of Environmental Protection under M.G.L. c. 21G §§ 15-17.
STATE OF WATER SUPPLY CONSERVATION
A state of water supply conservation declared by the Town pursuant to § 167-4 of this Bylaw.
UNAUTHORIZED WATER USE
All activations of water services, fire hydrants (excluding Fire Department personnel during fire emergencies), or other segments of the public water system by any person not authorized by the Water Department.
UNREGISTERED WATER USE
Any water utilized or taken from the public water system without a means of calculating actual consumption.
WATER USERS or WATER CONSUMERS
Any public or private users of the Town's public water system, irrespective of any person's responsibility for billing purposes for water used at any particular residence or facility.

§ 167-4 Declaration of a state of water supply conservation.

The Town, through its Board of Water Commissioners, may declare a state of water supply conservation upon determination by a majority vote of the Board, at a public meeting, that a shortage of water exists and conservation measures are appropriate to ensure an adequate supply and adequate water pressure to all water customers. Upon notification to the public that a state of water supply conservation has been declared, no person shall violate any provisions, restrictions, or requirements intended to bring about an end to the state of water supply conservation.

§ 167-5 Restricted water uses.

A declaration of a state of water supply conservation shall include one or more of the following restrictions, conditions or requirements limiting the use of water as necessary to protect the public water supply. The applicable restrictions, conditions or requirements shall be included in the public notice required under § 167-7.
A. 
Step One: Odd/even day outdoor watering restrictions. All outdoor water uses by water users with odd numbered addresses is restricted to odd numbered calendar days. All outdoor water uses by water users with even numbered addresses is restricted to even numbered calendar days.
B. 
Step Two: Hand held hoses only. All outdoor water uses are restricted to hand held hoses only. The odd/even outdoor watering restrictions shall also be observed.
C. 
Step Three: Outdoor watering hours. All outdoor water uses are restricted to hand held hoses only between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. or between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. The odd/even day outdoor watering restrictions shall also be observed.
D. 
Step Four: Outdoor watering ban. All outdoor water use is prohibited for all uses.

§ 167-6 State of water supply emergency; compliance with DEP orders.

Upon notification to the public that a declaration of a state of water supply emergency has been issued by the Department of Environmental Protection, no person shall violate any provision, restriction, requirement, condition of any order approved or issued by the Department intended to bring about an end to the state of emergency.

§ 167-7 Public notification.

Notification of any provisions, restrictions, requirements or conditions imposed by the Town as part of a state of water supply conservation, or by the Department of Environmental Protection as part of a state of water supply emergency, shall be given by the publication of at least one display advertisement in a newspaper of general circulation within the Town, by the posting of removable signs where any state highway crosses the Town line, and by such other means reasonably calculated to reach and inform all water users of the declaration of a state of water supply conservation and/or emergency. Any restrictions imposed shall not be effective until such notification is provided. Notification of the declaration of a state of water supply conservation shall also be simultaneously provided to the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection in writing by the Board of Water Commissioners.

§ 167-8 Termination of state of water supply conservation and/or emergency.

A state of water supply conservation may be terminated by a majority vote of the Water Commissioners, at a public meeting, upon a determination that the water supply shortage no longer exists. A state of water supply emergency shall be terminated by the Department of Environmental Protection upon a determination that the emergency no longer exists. Public notification of the termination of a state of water supply conservation and/or emergency shall be given by the publication of at least one display advertisement in a newspaper of general circulation within the Town, by the removal of all erected water supply conservation and/or emergency signs, and by such other means reasonably calculated to reach and inform all water users of the termination of the state of water conservation and/or emergency.

§ 167-9 Unauthorized water usage.

No person, water user or water commissioner shall activate, or cause to be activated, any water main and/or appurtenances to the public water system without prior authorization of the Water Department.

§ 167-10 Unregistered water usage.

No person, water user, or water consumer shall activate, or cause to be activated, water main and/or appurtenances to the public water system without first having a Water Department-approved metering device installed to calculate the amount of water utilized. No person, water user, or water consumer shall remove and/or alter any metering device.

§ 167-11 Violations and penalties.

Any person found to have violated § 167-5 and/or § 167-6 of this Bylaw will receive a written warning for the first offense and shall be liable to the Town in the amount of $100 for each subsequent offense within the same calendar year. Any person found to have violated § 167-9 of this Bylaw shall be liable to the Town in the amount of $300 for each offense. Any person found to have violated § 167-10 of this Bylaw shall be liable to the Town in the amount of up to $300 for each offense. Fines shall be levied and assessed by employees of the Water Department and/or authorized agents of the Board of Water Commissioners upon witnessing any violation, or after investigating and verifying that a violation in fact occurred. Violators shall be entitled to appeal the assessment of any fines with the Board of Water Commissioners, and said appeal shall be held at a public meeting of the Board. Fines shall be recovered by indictment, or on complaint before the District Court, or by non-criminal disposition in accordance with M.G.L. c. 40 § 21D. Each day on which a violation of § 167-5 and/or § 165-6 occurred shall constitute a separate offense.

§ 167-12 Severability.

The invalidity of any portion or provision of this Bylaw shall not invalidate any other portion or provision hereof.