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New Sewage Treatment Systems - Owners

Step-By-Step Process For Obtaining A New OWTS Construction Permit - Property Owner Information

(Effective May 1, 2007)

1.  If your property has not yet been developed, you can contact Environmental Health Services (EHS) to speak with a Public Health Sanitarian to arrange for a Site Evaluation.  A Site Evaluation is an "inspection" of the proposed parcel to determine whether it is suitable for construction of an on-site wastewater treatment system (OWTS).  If the site is suitable, specifications will be made as to the type and location of the OWTS. Refer to the Fee Schedule for the latest Site Evaluation Fee.  The fee must be received in advance of the Site Evaluation or at the time of the Site Evaluation.  When you call, be sure to mention the Town that you are proposing to build in.  Different sanitarians are assigned to cover different towns in a particular geographic region.  If the specific sanitarian for your area is not available, it is possible for another sanitarian to assist you.

2.  Prior to scheduling the Site Evaluation with a sanitarian, you will need to make contact with a contractor to have them also come to the proposed site with a backhoe or excavator.  Test holes will be required.  The type of soil will dictate how deep the holes must be and whether there will be a need for a percolation ("perc") test.  Perc Tests are typically only required when it is believed that the soil is porous and a conventional system is desired.  The sanitarian should be able to tell you whether a "perc test" is required based on their knowledge of the types of soils in the area where you're hoping to build. For the perc test, the Sanitarian will have to witness the test and may assist the contractor with performing the perc test.
    
3.  After the site evaluation has been conducted and the site evaluation fee has been received, the Sanitarian will complete a Site Evaluation Form with the specifications for the sewage treatment system that will be proposed for the site.  If the site is not capable of being developed as desired by the land owner, that information will be explained on the form.

4.  A Sewage Treatment System (STS) Construction Permit will only be issued to a "Registered Contractor".  For a list of Registered Contractors, click HERE.  You will be able to use the Site Evaluation Form to contact Registered Contractors to get estimates for constructing the specified type of system.  If contractors have any questions about the Site Evaluation that are not evident from the form, they are welcome to contact the witnessing Sanitarian and get further clarification. If you are planning to construct the OWTS yourself, you can claim an exemption to the "contractor registration" requirement.  To do so, you will need to complete a "Homeowners Registration Exemption Form".  To download a copy of that form, click HERE.

5.  Make sure that you have decided what contractor you would like to construct the septic system before you have them obtain a permit.  They may want you to sign a contract with them prior to getting a permit.  The Contractor may also make it part of their contract with you that "YOU" are responsible for applying for and paying for the permit.  This is fine, but the permit will still be issued to a Contractor, not to the property owner.

6.  Once the permit has been issued to the Contractor, that Contractor listed on the permit must perform the work.  However, if you decide to change your mind, you could pay the "permit transfer fee" and have the permit issued to a different Contractor, as long as that Contractor is registered with this Department.  Check the Fee Schedule for the current permit fee and/or permit transfer fee for a new STS.  If a contractor that is not registered constructs your system, this Department will not issue an approval of the system until that contractor has properly and legally registered with the County Health Department.

 

Chemung County Health Center
103 Washington Street
Elmira, NY

Public Health
607.737.2028
cchd@co.chemung.ny.us

Environmental Health
607.737.2019
ehs@co.chemung.ny.us
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