Source Water Protection Plan (SWPP) - City of Dover
Monday, August 17, 2015
Posted by: Gay Dawn Oyler
Dover’s municipal drinking water is taken from the Pend O’0reille River, making the river the “source” of the City’s drinking water. Keeping the water intake free from turbidity and hazardous wastes such as gasoline, oil, toxic substances and leaching septic tanks are primary goals of the Source Water Protection Plan. Bonner Soil and Water Conservation District helped the City of Dover with a grant to improve their Source Water Protection Plan, beginning in 2012.
As part of the SWPP, the city worked on numerous outreach projects to include: establishing a riparian buffer along the city shoreline, with the help of local conservation volunteer’s; signage on water quality and the important role riparian buffers play; a two year outreach campaign, developed under a grant provided by the IDEQ to Bonner Soil and Water Conservation District’s Lake*A*Syst (LAS) program. This campaign included a landowner’s guidebook outlining best management practices for source water protection. Guidebooks were hand delivered to over 161 homeowners, businesses and renters residing near the water, providing an opportunity to speak directly to the public. The LAS guidebooks, along with brochures related to source water protection are now provided with each new building permit, are placed in Dover Bay rental units, and are available to the public at Dover City Hall; local radio announcements were created and played during the highest tourist months for a two-year period; signage stating “Drinking Water Protection Area” was posted along Hwy 2 and at the local marina; 6 “Doggie Do” stations are located in the City’s waterfront park, which is a heavily populated dog park/walking area; aquatic specialists spoke to homeowners on aquatic noxious weed control and identification in order to prevent irresponsible aquatic herbicide application. Additionally, the City’s website includes the SWPP and associated water quality links. Most recently, the city established a septic tank “inspection” and pumping schedule for all Dover residents on septic systems. More than 200 volunteer and personnel match hours went toward these efforts.
February 25, 2015, the City of Dover was recognized by IDEQ as having a “State Certified Plan”. This certification covers a five-year period. In March 2015, Idaho Rural Water Association awarded the City of Dover the Source Water Protection System of the Year award. The City of Dover has proven to the State that they are actively pursuing measures to protect the public’s drinking water.
This type of program can be replicated with assistance from available resources at Idaho Rural Water Association, grants, conservation groups, volunteers, city council members, and many other community based organizations and groups focused on source water protection.
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