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Explanatory Memorandum to Water and Sewerage Services (Northern Ireland) Order 2006

Articles 118–123 Private supplies

59.These Articles set out DOE’s general functions regarding private supplies, and replace the existing provisions on private water supplies contained in the Water and Sewerage Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1973. They allow it to take all steps necessary to keep itself informed of the wholesomeness and sufficiency of private supplies, including maintenance of a register. Where a private supply is, has been or is likely to become unwholesome or insufficient, DOE may serve notice on the relevant person. The contents of the notice are specified as are the steps a person may be required to take. Any notice may not take effect until the specified period has elapsed. Where an objection is received the notice cannot take effect until the objection is withdrawn or the notice confirmed by the Appeals Commission. The role of the Appeals Commission is outlined, and a person has 28 days in which to appeal from the date a notice is served, with exceptions to this rule specified. The steps DOE can take should a person fail to comply with a notice within the specified period are described, as is the fact that any requirement of a notice is a statutory charge.

60.Article 122 provides DOE with powers to do works where it is designated to take steps in relation to private water supplies. In those circumstances, certain provisions of Part VIII apply as if they applied to DOE.

61.Article 123 provides DOE with a power to obtain information on private water supplies. Failure to comply with a notice served by DOE is an offence.

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