Government Owned Property


First off, I tried asking this somewhere else but couldn’t find a sourced answer. If there is a publicly owned water source that everyone uses (like a public fountain of water), is there an issue with using it for Netilat Yadayim? In this case the liquid is clean. Would it be an issue of using property you don’t personally own for a Mitzvah? Although in this case it’s useable for everyone and publicly funded. Source of responsa/Halacha appreciated please



  1. There is no problem using the water whatsoever. The fact that it is not owned by you is not an issue as there is no source that I am familiar with suggests that the water you use needs to belong to you. Even assuming that the water is for drinking purposes and you use it wash your hands, there is no problem because the government or the municipality does not insist that the water from the fountain can be used only for drinking. The official body that owns the fountain and the water is perfectly aware that people use the water for all kinds of uses and not just for drinking.

    I apologize for not being able to furnish you with any sources for what I have written but, as I mentioned, I am not familiar with any.

    Best wishes from the Team