The Crow Wing County Land Services Department reports that the number of septic systems being inspected in the county has increased by 44 percent since 2007.
A total of 455 existing septic systems were inspected in 2007 compared to 771 in 2012, an increase of 316 inspections.
The county Land Use Ordinance requires septic systems to be inspected in order to apply for land use permits, variances, conditional use permits, subdivision of land or transfer of property.
The Land Use Ordinance also requires that septic systems located within a 1,000 feet of a lake or 300 feet of a stream be assessed every three years to determine if the system needs to have the tanks pumped. This process insures that septic systems within the county are routinely inspected for compliance and proper maintenance.
There are approximately 23,600 septic systems within Crow Wing County. Only St. Louis and Anoka counties have more septic systems.
A recent report from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency estimates that only 3 percent of these systems in Crow Wing County are not in compliance with none being an imminent threat to public health. This coincides with actual data on file in the Land Services Department.
“The county is dedicated to insuring that septic systems are properly functioning and being maintained,” said Land Services Supervisor Chris Pence. “Making sure that septic systems are operating properly is important to keeping our lakes, rivers and groundwater clean.”
Citizens are encouraged to have their septic system assessed every three years to determine if the tanks need to be pumped. In addition, it is recommended to use minimal amounts of anti-bacterial soaps, bleaches and heavy duty cleaners as this can affect the system operations. It is also important to conserve water through repairing leaky water fixtures within the house as excess water can cause a system to fail prematurely.
The University of Minnesota Extension Office will provide a class on septic system care from 6:30-8 p.m. Monday, April 8, in the Land Services Building in Brainerd. There is no cost for this workshop and reservations are not required.
For more information, call 218-828-2326.