Tuesday Mar 10 2009
Supervisors support rollback of septic-system inspections
By: Gus Thomson Journal Staff Writer
Placer County supervisors have added their support to a bill by Assemblyman Ted Gaines to stave off mandatory septic-system inspections. Supervisors voted at Tuesday’s meeting to sign on to a letter of support for the Roseville Republican’s Assembly Bill 268. Jill Pahl, county environmental health director, said the Gaines bill would repeal provisions of state law established nine years ago to start an inspection program for all septic tanks and wells. It’s one of several bills now moving through the Legislature in response to the State Water Resources Control Board proposal to start enforcing the 2000 legislation next year. Pahl said the Gaines bill best addresses draft regulations that would create onerous requirements on property owners and local governments. Gaines introduced his bill after hearing from a parade of speakers at a public forum on sewer and water issues in Auburn early last month. There are 26,000 septic-system sites in Placer County facing mandatory inspections and what Pahl said were unnecessary monitoring costs of $325 every five years. The Gaines bill would remove the financial burdens coming from inspections and the possibility of expensive upgrades, Pahl told supervisors. At the same time, AB 268 would ensure public health through existing local and state water-quality protections, she said. Supervisor Jim Holmes said that the state rural counties association is also working on rolling back the regulations. Holmes and other supervisors voted unanimously to write a letter outlining problems with statewide in-spections. The Journal’s Gus Thomson can be reached at gust@goldcountrymedia. com.