[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Health of the Town of Dover 7-15-1995. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Groundwater Protection Districts — See Ch. 116.
Water — See Ch. 177.
Wetlands protection — See Ch. 181.
Manure — See Ch. 213.
Wells — See Ch. 233.
Wetlands protection rules and regulations — See Ch. 263.
The Board of Health ("Board") adopted these Regulations for Sewage Disposal, Chapter 217, on July 15, 2013, to supplement 310 CMR 15.000, Title 5 of the State Environmental Code ("State Code"). Title 5 sets the minimum standards for the protection of public health through the administration of construction of sewage disposal facilities. The Town of Dover has recognized that there are conditions in the Town which warrant additional consideration above that set under Title 5 in order to protect the health of the residents of Dover. Therefore, the Board of Health found it appropriate to adopt regulations containing requirements stricter than those contained in the State Code, pursuant to its authority under MGL c. 111, § 31, and 310 CMR 15.003. These regulations were originally adopted in 1995 and have been amended from time to time since then.
The State Environmental Code, Title 5, Minimum Requirements for the Subsurface Disposal of Sanitary Sewage (310 CMR 15.000) ("State Code"), will be enforced in the Town of Dover. Copies of the document can be purchased from the State House Book Store or viewed on line at the DEP website.
There are specific identifiable conditions in Dover which require more stringent regulations in addition to the State Code to protect public health and the environment. The more stringent regulations are set forth in this document with paragraph and subparagraph numbering to correspond with the applicable State Code section (as the State Code existed at the time these regulations were adopted). If the State Code is revised such that paragraph numbering changes, reasonable judgment should be used to correlate these regulations with the appropriate provision of the revised State Code. If the revisions to the State Code make the meaning of any provision of these regulations unclear, or if a provision of the revised State Code is more stringent than the corresponding provision of these regulations, the revised State Code shall govern with respect to that provision.
To provide ready reference for residents in regard to proper use and maintenance of septic systems, these Dover regulations are keyed to the State Code.
Fees shall be set from time to time by the Board of Health ("Board").
The Board hereby adopts the following amendments and revisions to the State Code, to be applied within the Town of Dover:
Change 15.019, Disposal System Installer's Permit, to read as follows:
No person shall engage in the construction, upgrade or expansion of any on-site system without first obtaining a Disposal System Installer's Permit. Disposal System Installer's Permits shall be renewable annually and expire at the end of the year in which they are issued. Applicants shall submit 2 references and pass a qualifying exam. A grade of 75% must be achieved in order for a permit to be issued. If not, the applicant may retake the test after 20 working days have expired. All questions are related to Title 5 and the Town of Dover's more stringent regulations. If a permit is not renewed within 1 year of expiration, the exam will have to be taken again. Because of the importance of proper installation of Disposal Systems, during such installation, there must be at least 1 person at the site at all times with an Installer's Permit issued by the Board.
In 15.020, Disposal System Construction Permits, insert after 15.020(5) the following:
In 15.100, General Provisions, insert after 15.100(2) the following:
In 15.102, Deep Observation Hole Test, insert after 15.102(5) the following:
In 15-104, Percolation Testing, change 15.104(6) to read as follows:
In 15.211, Minimum Setback Distances:
Add the following to (1):
For up-grades, repairs, or building a new house on a previously developed lot, all setbacks shall meet Title 5 separation distances. For new construction on a vacant lot, where no dwelling unit has previously existed, all parts of the proposed subsurface sewage disposal systems shall be not less than 100 feet from any open surface drain or any watercourse, including streams, brooks, ponds, swamps or other wetlands (as defined in MGL c. 131, § 40).
Insert after 15.211(3) the following:
In 15.221, General Construction Requirements for all Systems, add after 15.221(13) the following:
In 15.223, Septic Tanks, insert after 15.223(1)(c) the following:
Garbage grinders are not recommended, but septic tanks shall have the capacities as described in 15.223(1), (2) and (3), whichever applies.
In 15.240, Soil Absorption Systems:
Insert after 15.240(1) the following:
Insert after 15.240(4) the following:
Change 15.240(7) to read as follows:
No driveway, parking area or turning area or other impervious area shall be located above a soil absorption system - reserve area included. The Board or its Agent may waive this requirement on a case by case basis.
Insert after 15.241 the following:
All soils absorption systems shall be vented through the distribution pipe regardless of system location.
In 15.245, Soil Absorption Siting Requirements, insert after 15.245(1) the following:
In 15.248, Reserve Area, insert after 15.248(2) the following:
In 15.251, Trenches:
In 15.280, Alternative Systems, add the following:
The Board may establish any special conditions necessary to ensure adequate protection of public health and safety and the environment and to ensure appropriate evaluation and testing. Such conditions may include, without limitation: specification of site treatment or effluent characteristics; flow limitations; monitoring; testing; and reporting requirements; a requirement that a certified operator operate the system; or financial assurance mechanisms. The Board may also specify changes or modifications of requirements otherwise applicable to conventional systems that are appropriate for use of the alternative systems.
In 15.290, Shared Systems, add the following to (3):
In 15.300, Purpose and General Provisions, insert after 15.300(5) the following:
In Subpart D: Inspection and Maintenance of Systems, insert the following:
15.301(5). Under this section, "Expansion of Use" shall include demolition of a structure and replacement with a new structure. The Board reserves the right to have the septic system brought into maximum feasible compliance with Title 5 as a requirement for issuance of a demolition or building permit.
15.301(10). Upon submission of the Title 5 Inspection Report (Report), a fee as determined by the Board shall also be submitted. Reports for vacant properties shall be considered as Requiring Further Evaluation by the Board and may require additional inspections. The Report shall be submitted to the Board as required by Title 5, but at least 45 days before the sale of the property to allow review. Upon review of the Report, the Board reserves the right to request additional information or clarification as it deems necessary. If there are any questions, contact the Board, before performing the inspection or submission of the Report.
15.302(2)(e)9. Evidence of concrete deterioration, for example spalling or crumbling, shall be considered as Requiring Further Evaluation the by Board and will require repairs to or replacement if the septic tank or pump chamber is determined to be structurally unsound.
15.302(2)(f)5. Evidence of concrete deterioration, for example spalling, or crumbling, shall be considered as Requiring Further Evaluation by the Board and will require repairs to (if practical) or replacement of the distribution box.
15.302(4). The Board has determined that groundwater levels shall be determined by a Soils Evaluator, as part of the Inspection, if the septic system was installed prior to 1996 or no record of groundwater determination was made according to 15.103 Soil Profile by a Soil Evaluator. Prior to digging the test pit, a groundwater correction factor shall be determined (to assist with determination of test pit depth) based upon Board accepted comparison wells and the Frimpter method and applied to the test pit depth or observed water level results if NO "Mottling" was found. In any event, the test pit shall be dug at least 3 feet below the bottom of the soil absorption system where no "Mottling" is found or until groundwater is reached or the depth of the pit equals the correction factor. Test pit requirements may be waived, by the Board or its Agent, if the landscape position (e.g., gravel bank high above observed water levels) indicates little chance for groundwater mounding or intrusion. The Soils Evaluator must submit the test pit log and correction factor calculations as part of the Report.
15.303(1). The Board has determined that privies, cesspools or "porous tanks" (cesspools converted to a so called septic tank by installing an inlet and/or outlet tee) do NOT protect the Public Health, Safety and Environment and their presence is considered an automatic failure criterion and requires up-grading of the system to a Title V compliant system.
15.303(1)(a)7. The bottom of the SAS MUST be above Mottling or any corrected water level for the system to be considered passing. Any system within 6 inches of mottling shall be considered as Requiring Further Evaluation by the Board and may require up-grading.
In Subpart E: Procedures for Seeking and Receiving Local Upgrade Approvals and Variances from the Provisions of Subparts B and C of 310 CMR 15.000, add the following after 15.411(1)(b):
"Abutter" is defined as: any owner of land sharing a common boundary or corner of the site of the proposed activity in any direction within 300 feet of the site's property lines or corners. This shall include, but is not limited to, land located directly across a street, way, creek, river, stream, brook, canal, rail road or trolley line (active or abandoned).
Variance Notification Process
Obtain a certified list of abutters from the Town of Dover Assessor. Verify accuracy of property ownership as property sale may have occurred within the preceding 12 months and records may not be up-to-date. The current land owner must be notified, by hand if necessary. All abutters must be notified by certified mail or Certificate of delivery by letter detailing the variances being requested.
Indicate the abutter's property and subject site on the latest copy of the town Assessor's maps.
Submit to the Board of Health, items 1 and 2 with the application for sewage disposal works permit together with the original receipts from the US Post Office for the certified mailing clearly noting tax map number on each receipt. On the tax map clearly note property addresses for each receipt.
At the start of the Public Hearing present a copy of the certified abutters list (item 1) and the original USPO return receipt cards (Green Cards) or USPO certificate of delivery to the Board of Health and clearly note any that have not been returned. If any have not been returned, the Board will determine whether or not the Public Hearing can proceed or must be rescheduled.
If the Board determines that the assistance of outside consultants is warranted to determine compliance with Title 5 and/or local bylaws or regulations (including criteria for a variance), the Board may hire outside consultants pursuant to MGL c. 44, § 53G; c. 111, § 31, and this regulation. The hiring of outside consultants for this purpose shall proceed in accordance with this section.
In hiring outside consultants, the Board may engage engineers, planners, hydrologists, environmental consultants, attorneys or other appropriate professionals who can assist the Board in analyzing a project.
The reasonable costs for outside consultants will be borne by the applicant. The applicant and the Board shall work in good faith to agree upon the type and identity of outside consultants as well as the budget for their services. However, ultimate authority regarding the need for and identity of outside consultants (subject to the appeal procedure of Subsection F below) is retained solely by the Board and failure to cooperate with the Board on funding of outside consultants is grounds for denial of the application.
Any funds received by the Board to cover consultant review fees shall be deposited with the Treasurer of the Town of Dover, who shall set up a special account for this purpose pursuant to MGL c. 44, § 53G. Expenditures from this account shall be made only in connection with the specific project for which a review fee has been or will be collected from the applicant. However, expenditures from this account may be made at the discretion of the Board in connection with the application for which they were collected without further appropriation.
Review fees may only be spent for services, rendered in connection with a specific application for which they were collected. Accrued interest may also be spent for this purpose. At the completion of the Board's review of an application and the issuance of a decision on the application, any excess amount remaining in the account after the payment of all fees and costs associated with outside consultants, including interest, attributable to a specific project shall be repaid to the applicant. A final report of said account shall be made available to the applicant.
The applicant may take an administrative appeal from the selection of the outside consultant to the Board of Selectmen within 10 days of the Board selection of that outside consultant. The grounds for such an appeal shall be limited to claims that the consultant selected has a conflict of interest or does not possess the minimum, required qualifications. Minimum qualifications shall consist of either an educational degree in or related to the field at issue or three or more years of practice in the field at issue or a related field. The required time limit for the Board action on the application shall be extended by the duration of the administrative appeal. In the event that no decision is made by the Board of Selectmen on the appeal within 1 month of filing the appeal, the selection of the outside consultant made by the Board shall stand. If the appeal is denied, the applicant must pay the consultant fee within 10 days of the denial of the appeal or the permit will automatically be denied.
The municipal accountant shall submit annually a report of the special account to the chief elected body and chief administrative official of the municipality for their review.