FAQs – Attached Properties, Municipal Water Requirements
Municipal Water Requirements
Town of Madison – Attachment to the City of Madison, October 31, 2022
Q1. How will I be notified of upcoming water related requirements?
An official notice will be mailed to you shortly after the scheduled attachment date. The notice will outline the requirements and corresponding due dates specific to your property.
Q2. Do I have to connect to municipal water?
If municipal water is available, you are required to connect to the public water system within 180 days of the attachment date [Madison General Ordinance (MGO) 13.07]. For the Town of Madison Attachment, connection must be made by April 30, 2023.
Q3. What if I currently don’t have access to municipal water?
Once municipal water is available (the water main is extended), you will be required to connect to the public water system within 90 days of the water main extension. In the interim, your private well will continue to be the source of water for your home but you must obtain a well operation permit from the Madison Water Utility.
More information regarding well permitting requirements can be found on the Private Well FAQ; MGO 13.21; and on our Private Wells web page.
Q4. What is the process for making a residential water service connection?
To establish water service, a water service application and fee must be submitted to Madison Water Utility. The application is available for download on our Plumbers & Contractors web page, or it may be requested by calling (608) 266-4646. The fees associated with establishing water service, approximately $260 for a standard residential service, are based on the size of service and include the water meter and inspection fee along with the corresponding charge for sanitary sewer. Questions regarding sanitary sewer requirements and fees can be addressed by City Engineering staff at (608) 266-4751.
The application and fee may be submitted by either the property owner or a licensed plumber. However, all applications must be signed by a licensed plumber; in certain cases, the owner may also be required to sign the application. Once the application is approved, scheduling of the project will generally be coordinated by the plumber. After the service lateral is connected to the house, the owner will need to provide access to the inside of the house for utility staff to set the water meter in place.
Q5. What should I do first?
In order to meet the connection deadline, we encourage you to start this process as soon as possible. Obtaining estimates can take several weeks and this type of work is often scheduled several months out.
Our experience shows that delays are inevitable, often due to the weather. We recommend that you start discussions with your contractor before the ground thaws this spring.
Q6. Who is qualified to connect my property to municipal water?
The connection work must be completed by a licensed plumber who has been approved to do plumbing work in the City of Madison. When you contact contractors to obtain an estimate, please ask them if they are licensed and approved to perform work in the City of Madison.
A list of prequalified contractors approved to work on utilities in the City right of way may also be found on the City of Madison Public Works Department web page.
Q7. What is the average cost of connecting to municipal water?
The cost of connecting to municipal water can vary from one property to another and depends on a number of factors. The primary factors include the size of service needed to meet your water needs; the setback distance from the water main to your home; and the rates of the licensed contractor you choose. Generally, the greater the setback distance from the water main to your home the greater the cost.
Madison Water Utility recommends obtaining bids from a minimum of two licensed plumbers prior to selecting your contractor and signing a contract. Additionally, some savings may be achieved by coordinating the work to coincide with neighboring properties also being attached to the City of Madison. We encourage you to get the estimated costs and the scheduled start date in writing from the contractor you plan to use.
If there is a deferred water assessment, it must either be paid in full in conjunction with the water service application or the assessment can be financed over a period of five years through the City Finance Department. For more information, please contact City finance staff at (608) 266-4008.
Q8. What if my estimates are dramatically different in price?
When you receive your estimates, it is important to make sure you are comparing “apples to apples”. Your estimate should include items such as the meter application and water service fee; street opening permits (if applicable); tapping of the water main; specific pipe material type, quantity and size (copper, PEX, galvanized; 5/8”, 1”, 1.5”, etc.); street restoration costs; and internal connection costs from the water meter to your existing internal plumbing lines.
Q9. Can I keep my private well?
Yes, private domestic wells are permissible in the City of Madison with a valid well operation permit (MGO 13.21). If municipal water is available upon attachment, the private well may continue to be used for outdoor use only. If you decide to abandon the well after connecting to municipal water, the work must be performed by a licensed well driller or pump installer. Financial assistance, in the form of a well abandonment rebate, is available from the City of Madison.