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Kandiyohi County adopts new sewage treatment ordinance

WILLMAR -- A new county ordinance that incorporates state rules for septic systems was approved Monday by the Kandiyohi County Planning Commission.

The ordinance for individual subsurface sewage treatment systems goes into effect April 1.

It includes most of the old ordinance and new state rules counties were required to adopt.

The state approved the new Minnesota Pollution Control Agency rules in 2008. Counties have until February 2010 to adopt and implement the state rules. The new ordinance provides a set of minimum standards for regulation for subsurface sewage treatment systems to "protect public health and safety, groundwater quality and to prevent or eliminate the development of public nuisances."

The ordinance includes requirements for issuing permits for installation, altertion, repair or expansion of sewage systems and standards for the upgrade, repair, replacement or abandonment of a system. There are provisions for enforcement of the requirements and penalties for failure to comply.

As required by state law, the new ordinance also include an education component to ensure homeowners know how to maintain and operate their systems.

Homeowners who install a holding tank are required by the state to have an operating permit to make sure they're knowledgeable about managing it, and management plans are now mandated to require homeowners to practice basic maintenance routines.

Eric VanDyken, assistant zoning administrator, said a "universal" model ordinance provided by the Association of Minnesota Counties was used to develop the new county ordinance.

Other than the new state rules, he said, the new ordinance doesn't include additional county regulations. The county's previous regulations were transferred to the new ordinance, he said.

Also on Monday, the planning commission approved a preliminary plan for Robert and Helen Anderson and Dennis and Kayleen Ruhl for section 5 of Lake Andrew Township.

A conditional use permit for a home extended business was approved for Sandra K. Rykes in section 2 of Green Lake Township. Ryks intends to sell plants from May through July and fruits and vegetables from August through September in a detached garage at her home on Indian Beach Circle.

The commission said customer parking would not be allowed on the township road and that any signs for the business would not be allowed at the intersection of the township road because of sight limitations and safety concerns.

Carolyn Lange

A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.

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