Town of Williamstown, MA
Berkshire County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Health of the Town of Williamstown 6-25-2001. Amendments noted where applicable.]

§ 157-1 Purpose and authority.

Purpose. It is the purpose of these regulations to protect the public health, safety and welfare by ensuring that all on-site sewage treatment and disposal systems as defined by 310 CMR 15.00, Title 5, of the State Environmental Code are properly constructed and maintained. This will be accomplished through a comprehensive septic management plan, which will incorporate educational, training, maintenance and inspectional programs administered by the Berkshire County Boards of Health Association (BCBoH).
Authority. They are enacted under the authority of MGL c. 111, § 31, and any other power thereto enabling.

§ 157-2 Statement of local conditions.

The most recent revisions to Title 5 of the State Environmental Code are by far the most technical to date. As more septic systems are repaired and new systems installed, it is imperative that contractors have the technical skills necessary to properly construct these systems. This is particularly important with respect to new and constant changes in alternative technologies. Since training for contractors is not currently required or offered in this area, the Board of Health intends to address this need for training through an on-going educational and certification program to be conducted by the Berkshire County Boards of Health Association (BCBoH).

§ 157-3 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
The Board of Health, or its designated agents.
An on-going educational and training program conducted by the Berkshire County Boards of Health Association (BCBoH) for the purpose of providing disposal system installers a broad understanding of the regulatory issues, construction practices and updates associated with 310 CMR 15.00, State Environmental Code, Title 5.
A person licensed in accordance with 310 CMR 15.019, Title 5, of the State Environmental Code who constructs, repairs or replaces on-site subsurface disposal systems.
Effluent filters placed in the outlet tee of the septic tank for the purpose of further removal of suspended solid material from entering the soil absorption system, and as described in 310 CMR 15.289(4), Title 5, of the State Environmental Code.
Any terms not specifically defined herein are to be construed in accordance with the definitions of 310 CMR 15.00, State Environmental Code, Title 5.

§ 157-4 Septic tank filter installation.

Any septic tank installed or repaired after the effective date of these regulations shall be fitted with a septic tank effluent filter.

§ 157-5 Inspection.

[Added 11-3-2014,[1] effective 1-1-2015]
The Board of Health, or its designated agent, will witness all septic systems inspected under Section 15.300, and following, of 310 CMR 15.000. A fee, set by the Board of Health, will be collected prior to inspection.
Any inspection of the septic system for a dwelling that has been unoccupied will undergo a follow-up inspection six months after the date of reoccupation.
[Amended 6-6-2016]
The Board of Health or its agent shall have the authority to determine whether a system in an unoccupied dwelling need undergo a follow-up inspection and, if so, the time frame to perform that inspection.
The determination shall be based upon, but not limited to: the age of the system, information about the system on file (designs, previous inspections, pumping records), soil surveys, condition of system components, and length of time the system has not been in use.
Editor's Note: This amendment also provided for the renumbering of subsequent sections.

§ 157-6 Contractor certification.

[Amended 1-5-2004]
Any person applying for a disposal system installer's permit must show proof of satisfactory completion of the contractor certification training as specified under § 157-3D of these regulations prior to issuance of said permit.
Continuing education. Contractor certification shall remain valid provided the contractor attend Berkshire County Boards of Health Association (BCBoH) or other recognized training sessions not less than once per calendar year.
Certificates not transferable. A contractor certification is not transferable from one person to another.

§ 157-7 Administration.

General enforcement. The State Environmental Code, 310 CMR 11.00, shall govern the enforcement of these regulations.
Amendments. These regulations or any portions thereof may be amended, supplemented or repealed from time to time by the Boards of Health, with notice as provided by law, on its own motion, or by petition.
The Board of Health may vary the application of any provision of these regulations with respect to any particular case when, in the Board's opinion, the enforcement thereof would do manifest injustice.
Every request for a variance shall be made in writing and shall state the specific variance sought and the reason therefor.
Any variance granted by the Board shall be in writing. Any denial of the variance shall also be in writing and shall contain a brief statement of the reason for denial. A copy of each variance shall be conspicuously posted for 30 days following its issuance and shall be made available to the public at all reasonable hours.

§ 157-8 Enforcement.

The Board shall have the authority to enforce these regulations and permits issued thereunder by:
Inspection and investigation;
The issuance of violation notices and administrative orders; and
Civil and criminal court actions.
Whoever, himself or by his servant or agent or as the servant or agent of any other person or firm or corporation, violates any of the provisions of these regulations is subject to a fine as stated in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article II, Noncriminal Disposition, of the Code of the Town of Williamstown. Each day of violation, after written notice, is a separate violation.
The Board of Health may, after written notice, suspend or revoke any septic system permit for violations of this chapter.

§ 157-9 Appeals.

[Added 2-7-2011]
Any person or persons aggrieved by any order issued under this chapter may appeal by filing a written petition for hearing to the Board of Health, which must be received within 10 days after the day the order was served.
The hearing shall be commenced not later than 14 days after the receipt of a petition.
At the hearing the petitioner and other affected parties shall be given an opportunity to be heard, to present witnesses or documentary evidence, and to show why an order should be modified or withdrawn. Failure to hold a hearing within the time period specified herein shall not affect the validity of any order.
The Board of Health shall sustain, modify, or withdraw the order and shall inform the petitioner.
Any person aggrieved by the decision of the Board of Health may seek relief therefrom in any court of competent jurisdiction, as provided by the laws of this commonwealth.

§ 157-10 Severability.

If a court determines that any provision of these regulations is invalid or unenforceable, the other provisions shall not be affected thereby, but shall continue in full force and effect.

§ 157-11 Effective date.

The effective date for this chapter is January 1, 2002.