Information on Your Waushara County

In the next couple weeks, the Waushara County Zoning Department will begin notifying many County residents by mail that it is time to have their POWTS (Private Onsite Wastewater Treatment System) or septic system maintenance verification completed.  Notices will be sent on or around April 1st and owners will have until June 15 to have the required maintenance completed and verified to our office. 

The monitoring of the septic systems by the County is required by State law and is not optional.  Changes adopted by the Wisconsin Legislature in 2005 necessitated changes to the state plumbing code, (DSPS 383.225).  Those changes mandate that all POWTS located in the County must be inventoried and notices sent to the owners informing them of the POWTS Inventory maintenance regulations set forth in state code.  

The purpose of proper septic system maintenance is to protect the ground and surface waters of the state, and to protect the health and safety of all residents.  Continued inspection and maintenance of a septic system is important to make sure that the wastewater from your home or other structure is being treated properly. In addition it is helpful in identifying systems that are showing signs of malfunctioning. If a problem is found early, quite often the problem can be addressed before serious damage is done.

Also, keep in mind that when a failing septic system contaminates surface or drinking water, it can affect many more people than just the owner of the septic system. And finally, a properly maintained septic system may also prolong the life expectancy of the system and can reduce the need for costly repairs and replacement, which become more likely if the system isn’t monitored and maintained on a regular basis.

Waushara County is home to many seasonal residents and vacation homes with limited use.  The state mandate does not differentiate between systems that are used continually, seasonally, or not at all.  Systems with infrequent or no use can still be vulnerable to damage from Wisconsin winters and vehicular traffic. 

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