Town of Barre, MA
Worcester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Barre Board of Health 10-28-1996. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Water supply from a private well is a regulatory area with multiple enforcement in the State of Massachusetts. There are state statutes enforceable by the Board of Selectmen (MGL c. 40, § 54) and by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management (Well Completion Report).
These regulations, hereby adopted by the Barre Board of Health in accordance with MGL, c. 111, § 31, serve as a summary of existing laws.
Since a private source of water is not supervised by anyone other than an individual homeowner, it is imperative that a homeowner be aware of the factors which govern approval of a water supply as fit for human consumption.
MGL c. 40, § 54, states that a building permit for a residential dwelling shall not be issued unless there is a potable (approvable) source of water. This law is enforceable by the Board of Selectmen through the Building Inspector.
Department of Environmental Management regulations, 313 CMR 3.00, require that a Well Completion Report be submitted to the state, the local Board of Health, and the landowner.
MGL c. 21, § 16, requires that all well drillers must be registered with the state, which includes meeting state qualification requirements. The local Board of Health requires that only licensed well drillers fill out applications for well installation. The Board of Health also requires that, prior to any well driller being given approval for well installation, a copy of his/her well driller's license must be on file at the Board of Health office.
Drilled artesian wells must be constructed according to guidelines detailed by the Department of Environmental Management. The guidelines, basically, state the following:
The well casing must be sealed off into ledge.
The well cap must be at ground level and visible.
The soil around the capped well casing must be sloped to shed runoff water.
The water should be chlorinated after drilling and then pumped off.
The water must be tested by a state-approved lab for bacteriological quality. A test result of 0 coliform/100 ml is the minimum acceptable test result.
The Barre Board of Health does not require that water be tested for chemical quality. The Board does have information available concerning the primary and secondary water quality standards, which are both Federal EPA and Massachusetts DEP standards.
The Barre Board of Health does not require that pump testing be completed on all water supplies. However, to ensure an adequate water supply, the following water yield to well depth table is suggested:
Well Depth
Minimum Recommended Yield
(gallons per minute)
100 – 300
5 or greater
300 – 600
3 or greater
600 – 900
1 or greater
If the yield is not adequate according to the above chart, it may be necessary to incorporate a larger storage tank into the home system to ensure adequate storage capacity.
If any provision of these rules and regulations, or their application, is deemed to be invalid, such invalidity shall not affect any provisions of the rules and regulations not specifically deemed to be invalid.