Certain provisions of the SDWA will come into force on December 31, 2012. These provisions include those relating to agreements with accredited operating authorities of drinking water systems and provisions for the standard of care for municipal drinking water systems. In particular, section 14 will prescribe the content of an agreement between the owner of a drinking water system and an accredited operating authority that is in charge, but not the owner, of the system. Section 14 provides that the owner may, in the agreement, delegate a duty imposed on the owner under the SDWA to the accredited operating authority.
Section 19 prescribes the standard of care for owners of municipal water systems and applicable individuals, such as the directors and officers of a corporation that owns a municipal drinking water system. Each individual listed in section 19 must exercise the level of care, diligence and skill in respect of a municipal water system that a reasonably prudent person would be expected to exercise in a similar situation and act honestly, competently and with integrity, with a view to ensuring the protection and safety of the users of the municipal drinking water system.