United Water Co. has completed the long-awaited Level A mapping of the aquifer that lies under New Milford.

The map was released Oct. 1 by the Department of Environmental Protection, and the town expects to receive the final, more detailed, adopted version any day.

The map delineates the Aquifer Protection Area, which runs roughly from the Boardman district in the north, under the Housatonic River, then south along Route 7.

That area becomes the regulatory boundary for land-use controls designed to protect active public water supply wells from contamination.

Mayor Patricia Murphy reinstated the town's Aquifer Protection Agency and, with the Level A

mapping in place, the agency is expected to have authority to protect the aquifer.

"There will be regulations adopted concerning commercial/industrial building in the area of the map," said Ken Bailey, superintendent of the town's Water Pollution Control Authority.

"There will be a meeting early next month of the Aquifer Protection Commission to go over the DEP regulations, fine tune them and adopt the regulations for the town," he added.

The DEP has established a model of aquifer regulations and standards that could be adopted as is or expanded by the town, explained spokesman Dennis Schain.

Existing businesses would be grandfathered in, with requirements to meet regulation standards. New businesses allowed in the Level A Aquifer area would have to get Aquifer Commission approval.

Resident Anne Cutter, who is running for a seat on the Town Council, said she is committed to aquifer protection and is pleased the Level A mapping is complete.

"When you have a resource that you have no recourse to replace if something happens, you have to protect it," she said.

"As soon as some details are clarified by our town attorney, we will be able to use the mapping in our Plan of Conservation and Development," Murphy said. "This is something we've been waiting for."

Contact Susan Tuz

at stuz@newstimes.com

or 860-355-7322.