Village of River Hills
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Chapter 13 Section 13


(1)       Sanitary Permit Required.

[a]        No person shall install, construct or reconstruct a private sewage system unless the owner of the property on which the private sewage system is to be installed, constructed or reconstructed holds a valid sanitary permit.

[b]        No person shall sell at retail a septic tank for installation unless the purchaser holds a valid sanitary permit.

[c]        A sanitary permit shall be valid for two (2) years from the date of issue and renewable for similar periods thereafter.

[d]       A sanitary permit may be transferred from the holder to a subsequent owner of the land, except that the subsequent owner shall obtain a new copy of the permit from the issuing agent.

[e]        Septic tank and effluent absorption systems or other treatment tank and effluent disposal systems that are approved by the Wisconsin Department of Industry, Labor and Human Relations may be constructed when no public sewage system is available to the property to be served.

[f]        When public sewer does become available to the premises served, the use of the private sewage system shall be discontinued within such period of time determined by the Village Board, but not to exceed one year.  At that time the building sewer shall be disconnected from the private sewage system and be connected to the public sewer.

[g]        When a failing or malfunctioning private sewage system is encountered, the sewage disposal system shall be corrected or its used discontinued within such period of time set by the Village Board, with a maximum time limit of one year.

(2)        Applicable Forms.

[a]        The issuing agent shall use the sanitary permit form provided by the department.

[b]        Application Process.  The applicant shall submit the completed application to the issuing agent who shall review the certified soil tester reports and verify the report at the proposed site, if necessary.  The issuing agent shall approve or disapprove all applications and assist applicants in preparing an approvable application.  In the event an application is disapproved, the issuing agent shall give written notice to the applicant which notice shall state the specific reason for disapproval and advise as to amendments to the application, if any, which would render the application approvable.  The issuing agent shall also inform the applicant of the right to appeal as provided in Subsection 9 of this Ordinance.

(3)        Definitions.

[a]        “Department” means the state department of Industry, Labor and Human Relations – Bureau of Plumbing.

[b]        “Issuing Agent” means the individual assigned the duties of administrating this ordinance.

[c]        “Private Sewage System” means a sewage treatment and disposal system serving a single structure with a septic tank and soil absorption field located on the same parcel as the structure.  This term also means an alternative sewage system approved by the department including a substitute for the septic tank or soil absorption field, a holding tank, a system serving more than one structure or a system located an a different parcel that the structure.

[d]       “Sanitary Permit” means a permit issued by the department or the issuing agent for the installation of a private sewerage system.

[e]        “Conventional private sewage system” or “conventional system” means a type of private sewage system of which all the components relative to the design, installation, operation and maintenance conform to the standards addressed or permitted under Ch. SPS 383, Wis. Adm. Code.  Types of conventional systems include:

1.  Gravity flow soil absorption systems;

2.  Pressure distribution soil absorption systems;

3.  Mound system; and

4.  Holding tanks.  (Rep & Rec Ord #537, 10/16/19)

[f]        “Holding Tank” means an approved water tight receptacle for the collection and holding of sewage.

[g]        “Alternative private sewage system” or “alternative system” means a type of private sewage system of which all or part of the design involves new or innovative concepts for the disposal of wastewater either not addressed or permitted by the standards of Ch. SPS 383 Wis. Admin. Code relative to soil conditions, site conditions, construction techniques or operation or maintenance practices.  (Rep & Rec Ord #537, 10/16/19)

[h]        “Dosing Soil Absorption Systems” means a system that employs a pump or automatic siphon to elevate or distribute effluent to the soil through the use of a seepage trench or bed.  Distribution piping in seepage trenches or beds shall be four (4) inch perforated pipe approved by the department.

(4)        Issuing Agent.  The Plumbing Inspector or the Village of River Hills shall act as the Village issuing agent, and is hereby assigned the duties of administering the private sewerage disposal system.

(5)        Fees.

[a]        The fee for a sanitary permit shall be as set forth in the schedule of fees as adopted and subject to amendment from time to time by Resolution of the Village Board.  The Resolution and the applicable schedule of fees shall be kept on file in the Office of the Village Clerk and will be posted on the village website.

[b]        The Village shall not charge more than one fee for a sanitary permit or the renewal of a sanitary permit in any twelve (12) month period.

[c]        The issuing Agent shall forward a copy of each valid sanitary permit and fee as set forth in the schedule of fees as adopted and subject to amendment from time to time by Resolution of the Village Board to the department within ninety (90) days after the permit is issued, and shall forward the fee as set forth in the schedule of fees as adopted and subject to amendment from time to time by Resolution of the Village Board to the department as a groundwater fee.  (Am. 03/06/19, Ord # 535)

(6)        State Code.  This ordinance shall be subject to the provisions of Chapter 145, Wisc.  Stats., and all administrative rules and regulations thereunder regulating private sewerage systems.

(7)        Inspection.

[a]        The issuing agent shall inspect all private sewerage systems after construction, but before backfilling, no later than the end of the next workday, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, after receiving notice from the plumber in charge.

[b]        The issuing agent shall file reports and conduct surveys and inspections as required by the Village or the department.

(8)        Violations.  The issuing agent shall investigate violations of this private sewerage system ordinance and Sec. 146.13, Wis. Stats., and issue orders to correct the violations.

(9)        Lot size; Minimum Area.

[a]        In the event application is made for a private sewerage system, involving any lot, tract, or parcel of land which existed in single ownership, separate and distinct from any abutting property, on the date of the enactment of the “ZONING REGULATIONS” (Chapter 7 of the consolidated ordinances of the Village), or involving any lot, tract or parcel of land existing in single ownership, separate and distinct from any abutting property, on the effective date of the ordinance annexing the territory within which said parcel is located, and which said parcel is of less area than that required in Chapter 7, the Village Engineer shall certify in a written statement, signed by him and delivered to the Village Clerk before any such permit may be issued, that the public health, safety and general welfare of the district within which said parcel is located, will not be impaired by the installation of such private sewerage facilities, constructed in compliance with the Village ordinances.  In no case shall a permit be issued for the installation of any private sewerage system, unless the premises to be used for residence purposes in connection therewith have a minimum lot area of 34,000 square feet with no side of a lot less than 120 feet in length.

[b]        No permit for such private sewerage system shall be issued, unless at the time of making application therefor, there shall be a residence existing upon the premises covered by said application, or unless a building permit is issued simultaneously therewith for the construction of a residence upon said premises.

[c]        In the event the Village Engineer shall refuse to certify in a written statement, as provided in paragraph [a], above, or the Plumbing Inspector shall deny the owner’s application or refuse to issue a permit for the work desired, then the owner of the premises may direct an appeal to the Board of Appeals of the Village, in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 7 of the General Ordinances.  The said Board of Appeals, in each such case, shall determine all the facts with respect to the size of the lot, the sufficiency thereof, the date the present owner acquired same, the ownership of adjoining lots, and the effect of such contemplated use of said parcel of real estate upon the public health, safety, and general welfare of the district within which said parcel is located.  The said Board of Appeals shall have the authority to determine said appeal and make its ruling pursuant to the provisions of Section 62.23 of the Wisconsin Statutes.