Requirements on Developers and Public Water Authorities


By Will Tate
On June 2, 2010, Governor Sonny Perdue signed the Water Stewardship Act of 2010 (the “Water Act”). The Water Act contains several new requirements concerning developers and builders. The first, codified at O.C.G.A. § 12-5-180.1(c), requires all multifamily residential buildings permitted on or after July 1, 2012 be constructed so as to allow metering of the water usage of each unit. However, this requirement does not apply to renovations of multifamily residential buildings or to reconstruction subsequent to a casualty or condemnation.

The second requirement is codified at O.C.G.A. § 12-5-180.1(d). This section of the Water Act extends the requirement for individual unit metering to multiunit retail and light industrial buildings. This section applies to all multiunit retail and light industrial buildings permitted on or after July 1, 2012. Of note, the Water Act contains an exception for office space. Multiunit office buildings and office units within a mixed-use development are not required to provide for individual metering of water usage.
Another requirement concerning developers and builders is codified at O.C.G.A. § 8-2-3. This section of the Water Act requires the use of high efficiency plumbing fixtures in new construction permitted on or after July 1, 2012. The table below summarizes the fixtures affected by the Water Act and the corresponding specifications for water usage.

Fixture Maximum Water Usage
Dual Flush Toilet 1.28 gal/flush (for either 2 reduced volume flushes or one full volume flush)
Single Flush Toilet 1.28 gal/flush
Urinal 0.5 gal/flush
Lavatory Faucet/Aerator Replacement 1.5 gal/min @ 60 psi
Shower Head 2.5 gal/min @ 60 psi
Kitchen Faucet 2.0 gal/min

Further, the Water Act prohibits the sale of toilets with a per flush water usage of higher than 1.28 gal/flush after July 1, 2012.