Water Department

Find water departments, districts, authorities, boards, and services. Water departments are municipal utilities that provide information on drinking water, treatment plants, sewage treatment, conservation and testing.

What is a Water Department?

Water departments are local municipal utilities that provide residences and business with access to clean drinking water while also providing water treatment, sewage treatment, water conservation efforts, and safe water testing. Depending on your local area, water departments may also be called districts, authorities, boards, or services.

Typically, water departments are either government run, local non-profits or quasi-public utilities. This helps ensure that customers aren't overcharged. As a natural monopoly, water companies are highly regulated by the government to help control the price of their services.

Water Departments are responsible for

  1. Maintaining Infrastructure. Water departments are responsible for maintaining the public portions of the infrastructure related to water delivery and the removal of waste water. This includes the pipes that deliver the water into residences, as well as sewer lines. Water departments also maintain water treatment plants, sewage treatment plants, and other necessary facilities.
  2. Providing clean water. The water department's primary role is to ensure all customers have access to clean water. As mentioned above, this includes the infrastructure but also covers the water itself. Drinking water is tested on a regular basis to maintain a safe water supply
  3. Waste water removal. Along with providing safe water, these departments are also responsible for removing waste water. Use of sewers typically accomplishes this.
  4. Water treatment. The department provides water treatment services, to ensure water remains safe to drink. These services take incoming water and put it through the steps required to ensure it's potable before being sent onward to customers.
  5. Sewage treatment. Waste water must also be treated to ensure public safety. These processes either sanitize it or ensure its disposal.

Are there different types of Water Departments?

Generally, no. These departments provide similar services no matter what their individual names are. And, they all accomplish these tasks in similar ways. However, the same water departments may operate under different names in different service areas. For example, some large cities may have multiple water departments to meet the needs of the population. However, in less populated zones, a single department may support the needs of an entire county.