Town to host meeting surrounding possible changes to septic system regulations

Nov 10, 2022

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An information session regarding possible changes to state septic tank regulations will be held at the Dartmouth High auditorium on Wednesday, Nov. 16 at 6 p.m.

The meeting, conducted by the town’s Board of Health, will go over the state proposal, new regulations surrounding watershed permits, and the financial implications these changes could have on Dartmouth residents.

Earlier this year, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection released a recommendation to update the state’s Title V regulations, which require inspections of septic systems and cesspools prior to a home being sold or enlarged.

The new rules, which are currently in draft form, would require that all septic systems within watersheds feeding into Buzzards Bay be upgraded to active nitrogen removal systems within five years. Such systems generally cost in the $10,000 to $15,000 range.

To help alleviate some of that financial burden, the state will allow impacted residents to apply for low-interest loans from their local boards of health for these new systems.

According to MassDEP, there are about 2,700 homes connected to septic systems in the Dartmouth watersheds that would be affected by the regulation change. 

Exemptions would exist should a town seek its own collaborative solution to the pollution. The town could enter into an agreement with neighboring communities on Buzzards Bay on a variety of nitrogen-reduction programs. 

Municipalities would have 20 years to reach these goals.

A second informational session will be held at a later date.

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Event Date: 

Wednesday, November 16, 2022 - 6:00pm