11/10/04 — Commissioners set septic-tank finder's fee

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Commissioners set septic-tank finder's fee

By Matt Shaw
Published in News on November 10, 2004 2:00 PM

Wayne County inspectors will now find most septic tanks and drainage fields for a flat $50 fee.

The county commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to offer the new service. The work will be done by the environmental health inspectors on request and as their schedules allow.

Property owners and developers have asked for the help in locating the septic systems so that they won't be damaged by construction or landscaping, county officials said.

The commissioners' discussion was about how much to charge.

Jack Best suggested that $50 was not enough to cover the county's cost of a field inspection.

But Commissioner Arnold Flowers argued that $50 was a reasonable charge. "We don't need to make money on it," he said. "Besides, we want to make sure that people don't find their septic systems by running them over with a cement truck."

Crushed drainage pipes are one of the main reasons that systems fail, said Kevin Whitley, environmental health supervisor.

Before the vote, Whitley gave the commissioners an update on the Environmental Health Department. Thirteen employees are working in two main areas: on-site wastewater inspections, which deal with the placement of septic systems, and food and lodging inspections, he said. Combined, they account for more than 3,200 inspections a year.

Environmental Health also deals with mosquito control; well sampling; suspected lead-poisoning cases; tattoo parlors; and pool inspections.

Other business

Also Tuesday, the county commissioners did the following:

*Held a closed-door session about an industrial prospect. No action was taken afterward.

*Extended a contract with the N.C. Coastal Land Trust to continue negotiations to buy land around Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

*Proclaimed Thursday as Veterans Day. County offices, including the landfill and convenience centers, will be closed.

*Gave the county manager the authority to declared equipment valued up to $20,000 as surplus without the commissioners' pre-approval.

*Set a public hearing for 9:15 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 23, to discuss Community Development Block Grant projects.

*Heard a presentation on Keep Wayne County Beautiful.