Legislative UpdatesMay 2023
New legislation to revise the Septic Code are being introduced at the state level, they are: HB 4479
General ProvisionsHB 4480
Technical Advisory Committee
Senate bills are identical to the House bills. SB 299SB 300
Below is a summary of the bills:
MSTA ISSUE SUMMARY: SEPTIC CODE LEGISLATION HOUSE BILL 4479 ISSUES: EGLE And Public Health Department Capacity To Meet Staffing, Training, Implementation and Enforcement Under (Section 12752 (2))
Delegated Authority For Conventional (Section 12803) and Alternative (Section 12805) Systems
Defaults To EGLE In Absence Of Delegated Authority To Local Health Department
Funding & Staffing Issues Permit For Installation, Construction, Alteration Or Repair Requires Permit (Section 12807)
Need to remove “repair” from installation, construction, or alteration permit requirements.
Need definition of “repair” to avoid unintended consequences and delay/damage to systems which need simple and common repairs or upgrades (new product to replace old existing product performing the same function. e.g. new upgraded filter replacement)
“Repair” means replacement of original parts, adjustment of existing fixtures or the addition of new or upgraded materials or fixtures which do not significantly alter the original or approved design of the system. It shall also include additions necessary to immediately address system malfunctions or failures such as installing a clean out pipe to unblock a clog. Proprietary Product Registration (Section 12811)
Does an existing product commonly used in a conventional system that happens to be “proprietary” need to be registered for use upon the effective date of the act or it use is prohibited even though it has been in use for years? Periodic Inspection Requirements (Section 12821)
Upon enactment, does 5-year inspection requirement apply immediately to all 1.2 million systems in the state all at once? (Section 12818(1)
Concern that pumping within 30 days of inspection will interrupt the normal operating condition during inspection and not be representative of normal operating condition of the soil treatment component. If pumped within 30 days a hydraulic load test should be performed by the certified inspector.
Inspection requires documentation of tank level before pumping, pumping out the tank, etc. (Section 12821(2)(C) Implies pump out is done by inspector or at time of inspection? Logistics and logic of having haulers certified as inspectors? Onsite Wastewater Inspection Certification (Section 12823)
Grandfathering of existing inspectors authorized either by state code or local health department.
Definition of Registered Inspector and requirements (statewide code requirements)
EGLE approval of local health department inspector qualification
Add third party certification for inspectors? National Association of Wastewater Technicians (NAWT), National Onsite Water Recycling Association (NOWRA)
Application Fee Paid to State and not local health department if delegated to local? Elimination of Pre-Existing Local Government Point of Sale Laws Or Regulations (Section 12831)
Allow local units of government to choose whether to require “point of sale” inspection. Definition of “Failure”
Does tank have to be shown to be actively leaking or potential to leak above normal operating level?
If one finds a piece of toilet paper on top of effluent filter does this assume it got there due to water above the invert and thus fails even if currently operating normally?
evidence of high-water event in tank constitute failure? HOUSE BILL 4480 ISSUES: Registered Inspector Qualifications (Section 12815(1)(f)
Grandfather existing registered or certified inspectors under local government programs
Potential elimination of local point of sale inspection programs and registered inspectors under Section 12831 of HB 4479.
Allow for third party certification of individuals other than EGLE or health department staff