A DEP 45 day notice is used by the Department of Environmental Protection to notify a property owner of an aged water main that is most likely comprised of lead/galvanized metal. The DEP usually becomes aware of these conditions after attempting to install a new water meter at the premises.
Another common scenario for the DEP becoming aware of the violation is if the property owner, engineer or property manager is attempting to renew permits. This will trigger a DEP review of the property and existing piping conditions. It is important to rectify the existing conditions to avoid additional fees and related charges in accordance with New York City law.
If you pipe is made of lead or galvanized metal it is most common to replace the existing piping conditions with copper pipe. In addition to compliance with the DEP, it is a large health benefit to remove all of the existing lead pipes and install new copper pipes. Lead pipes have been proven to cause disease, most commonly with young children and pregnant women.
Grounds for Requesting an Extension
Provide a legitimate reason for requesting an extension. This could include unforeseen challenges, delays in obtaining necessary documentation, materials, or access to the property.
It is important to stress the importance of having a valid reason, as frivolous requests are likely to be denied upon review.
Preparing Your Extension Request
There is not a standard form when requesting an extension. It is suggested to clearly outline the essential reason for your extension request. Clearly identify the exact notice you are requesting to gain an extension for. Provide a clear and concise explanation of why the extension is necessary.
Any documentation you can provide to support the case if crucial. This will assist the reviewer in making an informed decision.
What is the next step?
In most cases the property owner or the property manager will be required to schedule a few calls for further clarification. Where it is not required, it is always suggested that you follow up with your submission until you receive a formal and documented approval for your extension. In many cases the approval will be in the form of updating the internal DEP system. If possible, it is always a positive to have a formal email or letter granting the extension.
Regardless of the extension request approval, the property owner will be required to resolve the infraction. You should contact a licensed plumber that has experience with replacing lead water mains with copper. You should understand the possibility of a repair and if a repair is compliant with the violation notice that you have issued.
In most cases the property will be required to replace the existing lead pipe with copper from the street main, into the building with a new control valve. Once the new main is installed the DEP can continue with their installation process.