Proposed Increases to Water Quality Permit & Service Fees

As part of our preparation for formal rulemaking, ADEQ is engaging stakeholders early in the process by holding informal webinars regarding proposed fee increases authorized by the Arizona Legislature | View Stakeholder Meetings & Materials >

The formal rulemaking process will begin this fall with the proposed rule to be filed in late 2022 or early 2023. When available, related information will be posted on ADEQ’s Active Rulemaking Page | Visit Page >

Over the last decade, ADEQ has significantly improved our processes by eliminating waste and deepening our technical expertise.

ADEQ Key Performance Metrics and Progress | View >

Specific results achieved by our Water Quality Division (WQD) since 2011 include:

  • WQD is issuing permits 75% faster.
  • Facilities are returning to compliance 80% faster.

Protecting Arizona’s water quality has never been more critical. In addition to increasing threats to drinking water sources from new contaminants and a growing number of impaired surface waters, Arizona is facing a significant reduction in water from the Colorado River water deliveries, a drop in the statewide average rainfall of ~4" since 1995, and ongoing severe drought conditions.

With the majority of the WQD’s permitting and services fees established more than a decade ago (2011), the Arizona Legislature granted ADEQ the authority during the 2022 legislative session to increase fees and equip ADEQ to protect the quality of Arizona’s water resources through fully funded programs. The WQD is currently operating with a deficit. These fees must be established in rule by July 2023 to ensure the agency has the appropriate funding in place to continue critical mission work in Fiscal Year 2024.

With a fully funded WQD, ADEQ can:

  • Continue to focus on impaired waters and implement the monitoring and assessment programs as recommended by the Auditor General
  • Continue issuing environmentally protective permits faster
  • Maintain the progress we have made to ensure that public drinking water system customers are served drinking water that meets state and federal requirements
  • Quickly return facilities to compliance with state and federal requirements
  • Improve the wastewater and drinking water operator programs
  • Update aquifer water quality standards
  • Jumpstart the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program
  • Investigate a nonpoint source program