Water Operators

NOTICE FOR THOSE RENEWING: THE LICENSE RENEWAL POSTCARDS YOU RECEIVED IN THE MAIL MAY HAVE INCORRECT CE INFORMATION. PLEASE REFER TO THE LICENSE LOOKUP PAGE TO VERIFY YOUR CURRENT NUMBER OF CE HOURS ON RECORD WITH THE DEPARTMENT. THE NUMBERS ON THE LICENSE LOOKUP WEBSITE ARE CORRECT.
 

Water Operator means the individual or individuals responsible for making decisions regarding the daily operational activities of a public water system, water treatment facility, and/or distribution system that will directly impact the quality and/or quantity of drinking water.

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Requirements for Licensure

To qualify for licensure as a (Grade I – VI) Water Operator you must:

  1. Be in adequate physical condition
  2. Be able to read and write the English language
  3. Produce evidence of satisfactory attendance at operator’s training meetings or short courses, or completion of education courses available that are consistent with the applicable grade.
  4. Be able to maintain logs and records of operation and perform maintenance consistent with the applicable grade.
  5. Produce evidence of good moral character, integrity, ability to cooperate with others, industry, reliability, initiative, and judgement to the degree necessary to secure satisfactory operating results.
  6. If the water system is sharing an operator, the application must include the following information:
    1. The name of the operator;
    2. The grade of the certificate held by the shared operator;
    3. The classification of the systems involved;
    4. The distance between the systems;
    5. The signatures of the operators;
    6. The signature of the owner(s) of each of the systems; and
    7. The date(s) the agreement is signed.

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Procedures to Apply for Licensure

To apply for licensure as a Grade I Operator , you must submit the following:

  1. A completed application
  2. Documentation of a Bachelors of Science Degree (with special courses in sanitary sciences); and
    • 3 years in charge of a public water system; or
    • 3 years as a regulatory agent of a public water system; or
    • 3 years as a provider of technical assistance to public water systems OR

4 years of college; and

    • 4 years in charge of a public water system; or
    • 4 years as a certified operator of a public water system; or
    • 4 years as a regulatory agent of public water supply systems; or
    • 4 years as a provider of technical assistance to public water systems OR

High school education or equivalent; and

    • 6 years in charge of a Class II or III water system; or
    • 8 years operation of a system under a person licensed as a Grade I operator; or
    • 8 years as a regulatory agent of public water systems (e.g. State or Federal Safe Drinking Water Act enforcement experience; or
    • 8 years as a provider of technical assistance to public water systems
  1. Licensure Fee of $115
  2. Documentation of prior successful completion of the Grade II Licensure Exam
  3. Successful completion of Grade I Licensure Examination

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To apply for licensure as a Grade II Water Operator , you must submit the following:

  1. A completed application
  2. Documentation of 2 years of college; and
    • 3 years responsible charge of public water supply system; or
    • 3 years as a certified operator of a public water system; or
    • 3 years as a regulatory agent of public water supply systems; or
    • 3 years as a provider of technical assistance to public water systems OR

Documentation of a high school diploma or equivalent; and

    • 6 years responsible charge of a Class III public water system; or
    • 6 years operation of a system under the supervision of a person possessing a License as a Grade I or Grade II Operator; or
    • 6 years as a certified operator of a public water system; or
    • 6 years as a regulatory agent of public water supply systems; or
    • 6 years as a provider of technical assistance to public water systems
  1. Licensure fee of $115
  2. Documentation of prior successful completion of the Grade III Licensure Exam
  3. Successful completion of Grade II Licensure Examination

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To apply for licensure as a Grade III Water Operator , you must submit the following:

  1. A completed application
  2. Documentation of a high school diploma or equivalent and 2 years responsible charge of a community water system; or

High school diploma or equivalent; and

  • 3 years operation of a system under the supervision of a person possessing a License as a Grade I, Grade II or Grade III operator of a public water system; or
  • 4 years as a regulatory agent of public water supply systems; or
  • 4 years as a provider of technical assistance to public water systems
  1. Licensure fee of $115
  2. Successful completion of the Grade III Licensure Examination

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To apply for licensure as a Grade IV Water Operator , you must submit the following:

  1. Completed application
  2. Documentation of a high school diploma or equivalent
  3. Successful completion of a validated Grade IV Water Operator examination following:
    1. 6 months experience as a water operator or
    2. A basic training course for water system operators recommended by the Council and approved by the Director or
    3. A correspondence course recommended by the Council and approved by the Director

4. Licensure fee of $115

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To apply for licensure as a Grade V Water Operator , you must submit the following:

  1. A completed application
  2. Documentation of demonstrated ability in the collection of water samples, interpretation of results of biological examination and the maintenance of required records
  3. Successful completion of a validated Grade V Water Operator examination
  4. Licensure fee of $31

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To apply for licensure as a Grade VI Water Operator , you must submit the following:

  1. A completed application
  2. Proof of successful completion of an examination following a minimum 32 hour course which includes hands-on instruction recommended by the Council and approved by the Director on the subject of cross connections, backflow preventer operation, maintenance, testing, and repair. Such examination shall include a written test as well as a hands-on portion to test actual testing and repair proficiency.
  3. Licensure fee of $115
  4. Evidence of at least 19 years of age (i.e.: driver’s license, birth certificate, marriage license, school transcript, US State ID card, Military ID, or similar documentation);

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Examination Information

An applicant is required to complete an examination to be licensed as a water operator, grades (1-4).  The examination is given either in conjunction with a classroom course or by appointment with the field offices in North Platte, Grand Island, Norfolk, Omaha, or Lincoln.  The examinations are given by the Department of Health and Human Services, Licensure Unit,  Division of Public Health.

To register to take an examination and/or one of the classroom courses contact:

Nebraska Public Water Supply Program
Doug Woodbeck, Program Manager
Phone: (402) 471-0521
e-mail: doug.woodbeck@dhhs.ne.gov  

Mike Wentink, Training and Licensure Officer
Phone: (308) 535-8135
E-mail: mike.wentink@dhhs.ne.gov

The applicant must pay a fee for the classroom course and textbooks (See the section of Fees).

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Provisional License:

Provisional licenses may be issued to any applicant for a Grade I, ll, lll, or lV license for that period in which experience is being acquired. A provisional license is non-renewable, must be issued on a case-by-case basis, and must be site specific. All education, training substitutions, and experience requirements for the applicable grade must be met during the provisional period.

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Fees

pdf icon Fee Schedule

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Applications

These forms may be completed on-line, however, they cannot be submitted via e-mail due to the fact that all applications and forms require original signatures. If you complete the form on-line, you must print the form and mail it to the address below.

Fees (if applicable) are payable to the "Licensure Unit".

Licensure Unit
PO Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509-4986

Click here for the application for Water Operators, or contact:

Doug Woodbeck, Program Manager
Phone: (402) 471-0521
E-mail: doug.woodbeck@nebraska.gov  

pdf icon Duplicates/Reissue Form
pdf icon Name Change Form

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Renewal

  • All licenses expire December 31st of every odd year.
  • To renew a license, the license holder must submit the completed renewal application, obtain 10 hours of continuing education and pay the licensure fee.
  • Renewal fees are the same as the initial licensure fees.
  • A renewal notice will be sent to the last known address of record at least 30 days prior to expiration.

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Reinstatement

            An individual whose credential has expired, been placed on inactive status, voluntarily surrendered unrelated to discipline, may apply for reinstatement at any time.  The applicant must:

1.    Submit a completed reinstatement application;

2.    Obtain 10 hours of continuing education within the preceding 24 months;

3.    If the licensee does not have the continuing education hours, she/he will need to successfully complete the applicable Grade Licensure examination.

4.    Pay the fee(s):

·      If the credential is expired, inactive, lapsed or non-disciplinary revocation, the reinstatement fee of $35 and the renewal fee; or

·       If the credential was voluntarily surrendered, the renewal fee.

An individual whose credential was suspended or limited may apply for reinstatement at any time.  An individual whose credential has been revoked may apply for reinstatement after a period of two years has elapsed from the date of revocation.  An individual whose credential was voluntarily surrendered may apply for reinstatement according to the order entered by the Director.   To apply for reinstatement, the individual must contact Nebraska’s Public Water Supply Program for further direction. (402-471-0521)

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Continuing Education

Ten hours of approved continuing education are required for renewal of your license. Licenses are renewed every odd year. These credits must have been earned between the effective date of the license and 12/31 of the year of expiration. Hours completed prior to this time will not be accepted as meeting the required continuing education hours. Hours earned in excess of the requirement may not be carried over to the next renewal period.

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Name and Address Change

To request an address change, you can contact Patti Owens at (402) 471-2299 or e-mail patricia.owens@nebraska.gov   

If you wish to change your name on your licensing record, you must mail a pdf iconwritten request with your signature notarized along with a copy of the legal document verifying name change to:

Licensure Unit
Water Operators
PO Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509-4986

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Duplicates/Reissue

Duplicates: A duplicate large license or small license card may be requested at the time of initial licensure.

A duplicate large license or small license card may be requested at the time of initial licensure.

Reissue: A large license and/or small license card may be reissued when the licensee requests: additional documents; replacement of original document(s) due to loss, mutilation or destruction; or replacement of document(s) due to a name change.

A large license and/or small license card may be reissued when the licensee requests: additional documents; replacement of original document(s) due to loss, mutilation or destruction; or replacement of document(s) due to a name change.

The Department will charge a fee of $10.00 for a duplicate of an original or reissued certificate.

To request a reissued license, you must submit a pdf iconrequest for reissuance to:

Licensure Unit
Water Operators
PO Box 94986
Lincoln NE 68509-4986

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Certifications/Verifications

Certification and Verification information can be obtained by checking the website at: www.dhhs.ne.gov/lis/lisindex.htm

OR

To request either a certification or verification or your license to be sent to another state licensing agency, send your request in writing along with the proper fee to the our office. Checks should be made payable to the Licensure Unit.

Certification

  1. Fee - $25.00
  2. Certification includes:
    1. Name
    2. Profession
    3. License number
    4. Issuance date
    5. Expiration date
    6. Whether the license was granted by examination, waiver, or reciprocity
    7. Examination information, if available
    8. Whether disciplinary action has been taken against the license. If so, the type(s) and date(s) of the action will be included.
    9. SEAL of the Nebraska Department of Health & Human Services

Verification

  1. Fee - $5.00
  2. Verification includes:
    1. Name
    2. Profession
    3. License Number
    4. Expiration Date
    5. Department Staff Signature

A verification does not include the SEAL of the Nebraska Department of Health & Human Services nor information relating to discipline, or examination.

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Rules and Regulations/Statutes

pdf iconRegulations Relating to Operator Licensure - 179 NAC 10

pdf iconStatutes Relating to Nebraska Safe Drinking Water Act

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Contact Us

Office Address:

Mailing Address Physical Address
Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services
Licensure Unit
Licensing & Regulatory Affairs
PO Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509-4986
Nebraska State Office Building
301 Centennial Mall South
14th and M Streets
3rd Floor
Lincoln, Nebraska

Phone: (402) 471-2115
Fax: (402) 471-3577

 

Office Hours:

8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (central time)
Monday through Friday

For Scope of Practice Questions, Examination Information, Applications and correspondence or training course information contact:

Nebraska’s Public Water Supply Program
Doug Woodbeck, Program Manager
Phone: (402) 471-0521
E-mail: doug.woodbeck@nebraska.gov  

Mike Wentink, Training and Licensure Officer
Phone: (308) 535-8135
E-mail: mike.wentink@nebraska.gov

For Continuing Education Questions:

Mike Wentink, Training and Licensure Officer
Phone: (308) 535-8135
E-mail: mike.wentink@nebraska.gov

For Individual Water Operator Licensure (must pass examination before license is issued):

Patti Owens, Health Licensing Specialist
Phone: (402) 471-2299
E-mail: patricia.owens@nebraska.gov    

Rene Tiedt, Program Manager
Phone: (402) 471-2299
E-mail: rene.tiedt@nebraska.gov

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Complaints

To file a complaint, please contact Doug Woodbeck or Mike Wentink of the Water Operator Program:

E-mail: doug.woodbeck@nebraska.gov
Phone: (402) 471-0521

Mike Wentink, Training and Licensure Officer
E-mail: mike.wentink@nebraska.gov
Phone (308) 535-8135 

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