School Convenes Experts to Assist Local Governments in Managing Public Health and Drinking Water Issues

When an event affects the supply or safety of drinking water, local governments are on the front lines to assist with a variety of needs, from obtaining alternative water supplies to getting reliable information about health risks. 

To meet this need, the School of Government convened and is facilitating a Drinking Water Working Group—made up of 20 subject matter experts, local government officials, and other relevant stakeholders. Led by faculty member Jill Moore, this group is working to develop a practical toolkit for local governments to use when an incident creates a real or perceived risk to the safety of local drinking water.

Through the review of case studies and identification of relevant resources, group members will design a set of tools that will guide local governments toward informed decision-making when the safety of local drinking water is at risk. Upon completion, they will advise the School on tactics for its dissemination to local governments throughout the state.

Once the toolkit is released, local governments can utilize it when responding to events such as floods, discharges into water supplies, power outages, water main breaks, and similar circumstances that may threaten drinking water.

In order to ensure the toolkit will address the needs of potential users, group members are asking relevant local government officials to complete a survey by Sunday, March 10.

The Drinking Water Working Group is supported by funding from the North Carolina Policy Collaboratory and coordinated by the School of Government’s ncIMPACT Initiative. The Collaboratory facilitates and funds research related to the environmental and economic components of the management of the natural resources within the state of North Carolina and of new technologies for habitat, environmental, and water quality improvement.

For more information about the survey or the working group, please contact ncIMPACT Engagement Director Emily Williamson Gangi at