Town of Fort Edward, NY
Washington County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward 3-27-1989 byL.L. No. 3-1989. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Mobile homes - See Ch. 71.
Site plan review - See Ch. 81.
Subdivision of land - See Ch. 87.
Zoning - See Ch. 108.

§ 80A-1 Title.

These regulations shall be known as the ”Town of Fort Edward Sanitary Code." The Town of Fort Edward is hereinafter referred to as the "town."

§ 80A-2 Applicability.

These regulations shall govern the disposal of sewage and the design and installation of all sewage disposal systems within the town, except that this chapter shall not govern the design or installation of, or disposal of sewage by means of, a community or public sewer or of those systems that come under the jurisdiction of the New York State Department of Health. The transportation and/or dumping of sewage off-site shall comply with all current New York State Department of Health and Department of Environmental Conservation regulations regarding such.

§ 80A-3 Statutory authority.

Enactment of these regulations is pursuant to Article 3 of the Public Health Law and Article 27 of the Executive Law of the State of New York.

§ 80A-4 Purpose.

The purpose of these regulations is to promote the health, safety and general welfare of town residents by providing, through the location, construction and use of properly designed facilities, that sewage and other wastes are disposed of in a manner that will not create a health hazard, adversely affect the environment or impair the enjoyment or use of property.

§ 80A-5 Prohibited acts.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to construct, alter or extend any facility or part of such facility intended or used for the discharge of sewage without having first complied with requirements herein.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to cause to be discharged, within the town, any sewage except by systems designed, installed and approved in accordance with the requirements of these regulations.
C. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to use or maintain any individual sewage disposal system that is unsafe, is a source of pollution to any surface waters of the town, permits the seepage of sewage to ground surface or interferes with the enjoyment or use of property.

§ 80A-6 Preapplication procedure.

A. 
Prior to making an application for a disposal system permit, the applicant shall make a preapplication to the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator. The preapplication shall consist of a written report of a percolation test and soils analysis of the site of the proposed facility. The percolation test and soils analysis shall be determined by methods described in Appendix A[1] of these regulations and shall be conducted by a qualified person approved by the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator. If the applicant so chooses, the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator will arrange to have the percolation test and soils analysis done by a third party; however, the applicant shall bear all cost incurred.
[1]
Editor's Note: See § 80A-22.
B. 
The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may conduct such investigations, examinations, tests and site evaluations as it deems necessary to verify information contained in the preapplication for a sewage disposal permit, and the applicant or owner of land on which the system is proposed shall grant the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator or his agents permission to enter on his land for these purposes.
C. 
Site data which may affect the type, size and design of a disposal facility may include, but not be limited to, soil type, topography, depth to seasonal high groundwater, depth to impervious material, depth to bedrock and distance to wetlands or surface bodies of water.
D. 
The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator shall have the authority to require certification or retesting to verify information submitted as part of the application.

§ 80A-7 Determination of system type.

Subsequent to the submission of the preapplication data, the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator shall make a determination as to whether the site requires a conventional septic tank/soil absorption system or an alternative disposal system.

§ 80A-8 Disposal system permit applications.

[Amended 6-13-2005 by L.L. No. 6-2005]
Application for a disposal system permit may be made only by the owner or lessee of the lot for which the system is proposed, or his duly authorized agent or assigns, and shall be in writing, signed by the applicant, in such form as determined by the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator. A fee shall accompany each application for a sewage disposal permit in the amount adopted by the Town Board pursuant to Town Code § 50-1 and listed on the Fee Schedule.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: The Fee Schedule is on file in the Town offices. See § 50-1.

§ 80A-9 Application information for conventional septic tank/soil absorption system.

The following information shall be provided, on forms provided by the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator, for any proposed conventional system:
A. 
House location.
B. 
Location and details of the sewage disposal system, including septic tank, distribution box and leaching facility and must include a fifty-percent-expansion area.
C. 
Location of well or location of public water main and house connection.
D. 
Location of driveways, swimming pools or other structures.
E. 
Location of any watercourses, ponds, lakes or wetlands on or within one hundred (100) feet of the proposed system.
F. 
Location of all wells and sewage disposal systems within two hundred (200) feet of the proposed system.
G. 
Location of all deep test holes and percolation test holes. A minimum of one (1) deep test hole and two (2) percolation test holes are required.
H. 
Title box indicating owner of property, town, street address, date and scale.
I. 
Design criteria to include number of bedrooms, percolation rate, sewage application rate and leaching area.
J. 
Locating and discharge points for gutter, footing, storm and curtain drains.

§ 80A-10 Application information for alternative system.

The following information must be provided for any proposed alternative system:
A. 
Letter of authorization for engineer or architect.
B. 
One (1) set of plans bearing the seal and signature of a professional engineer, registered architect or land surveyor (with a pre-1971 7208N exemption from the New York State Education Department) licensed and registered to practice in New York State. These plans shall be scale showing the following:
(1) 
Plot plan, including major physical features drawn to scale on a Tax Map of the property.
(2) 
House location.
(3) 
Plan and cross section of the sewage disposal system, to include fifty-percent-expansion area, and construction details of system components, including septic tank distribution box and leaching facility.
(4) 
Location of driveways, garages, swimming pools or any other structures.
(5) 
Location of well or location of public water main and house connection.
(6) 
Two-foot contours of the property. If ground is to be cut or filled, both existing and proposed contours must be shown.
(7) 
Location of any watercourses, ponds, lakes or wetlands on or within one hundred (100) feet of property line. Stream index number and classification or wetland designation must be noted.
(8) 
Accurate location of all deep test holes and percolation test holes. A minimum of one (1) deep hole and two (2) percolation test holes is required.
(9) 
Location of all well and sewage disposal systems within two hundred (200) feet of the proposed system or a note stating that none exist within two hundred (200) feet.
(10) 
Title box indicating owner of property; location, including street and municipality; name and address of design engineer or architect; date of drawing, including dates of revisions; and scale.
(11) 
Location and discharge points for gutter, footing, storm and curtain drains.
(12) 
Design criteria to include number of bedrooms, soil percolation rate, application rate, etc.
(13) 
Site location sketch and North arrow.
(14) 
Copy of house plans to verify bedroom count for design calculations.
(15) 
If water service is to be from a community public water supply, a letter from the owner of the supply stating its willingness and ability to supply the water.
(16) 
Certification by designer.

§ 80A-11 Issuance of permit.

Once all pertinent site data has been verified and certified, all permit fees have been paid and the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator has determined that the proposed action in the application complies with all the specifications contained in these regulations, a disposal system permit will be issued to the applicant.

§ 80A-12 Permit disapproval; expiration.

A. 
The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may disapprove of an application for a disposal system permit if it determines that:
(1) 
The individual sewage disposal system, as proposed, will not conform to the requirements or specifications of these regulations or an order of the Consolidated Board of Health.
(2) 
The applicant has failed to supply all data necessary to make a determination as to whether or not such individual sewage disposal system conforms to the requirements or specifications of these regulations and has failed to supply such information for sixty (60) days after a written request for such additional information has been mailed.
B. 
The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may, by written notice, order all further work stopped on any individual sewage disposal system which is being constructed or installed in violation of these regulations.
C. 
Expiration of permits. Unless otherwise specified in the permit, all permits shall expire within one (1) year of issuance. In the event that a permit expires with the disposal system as yet incomplete, the applicant must obtain a permit renewal. There shall be no charge to renew a permit.

§ 80A-13 Disposal system use certificate.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any unauthorized person to cover or utilize any individual sewage disposal system unless a disposal system use certificate has been issued therefor.
B. 
It shall be the duty of the holder of the disposal system permit to notify the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator when the installation is ready for inspection. The inspection shall be made as soon thereafter as practical by the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator. The Building Inspector/ Zoning Administrator may also make inspections during construction to ensure that the system is being installed in accordance with the application and these regulations. Any part of installation which has been covered prior to final approval shall be uncovered upon order of the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator.
C. 
A disposal system use certificate shall not be granted until the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator has determined that the individual sewage disposal system has been installed in compliance with the application and these regulations. The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may make such a determination only after he has made an on-site investigation of the system or received a certification from the individual designing and installing the system that the system conforms to the specifications as set forth in the application and these regulations. The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may withhold a determination until after an on-site investigation has been completed, notwithstanding that the system has been certified as properly installed and designed.
D. 
The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may waive the required on-site inspections when the system has been installed by a person who has met the qualifications and been designated as a certified installer by the town.

§ 80A-14 Site inspections.

A. 
The filling of an application for a disposal system permit represents permission by the applicant for the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator and/or other designated person to conduct such examinations of the disposal system site.
B. 
The Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator may inspect an individual sewage disposal system built before or after these regulations take effect to ensure that it is being maintained in proper working order. It shall be unlawful for the owner or occupant of the property to deny such official or his designee access to the property at reasonable times for the purpose of making such inspections. Where the Building Inspector/ Zoning Administrator determines that a system is not being maintained in compliance with these regulations, it may order that use of the system cease and/or that the defects be corrected and/or misuse abated. If the prescribed action is not taken within the time fixed by the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator, it may revoke the use permit for the system and/or refer the matter to the Consolidated Board of Health for appropriate corrective action.

§ 80A-15 Existing systems.

A. 
Subject to the provisions of these regulations, the use or maintenance of a properly functioning preexisting individual sewage disposal system may be continued. This section shall not be construed to permit any unsafe use or structure or permit such structures or their use when such structure or use constitutes a threat to public health, safety, welfare or environmental quality; permits the seepage of sewage waters to ground surface; or interferes with the enjoyment or use of property.
B. 
Alteration, enlargement or extension of a system.
(1) 
It shall be unlawful to alter, enlarge or extend a preexisting individual sewage disposal system except in conformity with the provisions herein. However, emergency repairs may be made to a system without prior approval from the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator, if they are done by a certified installer. In the event that such emergency repairs are made, the certified installers shall make a de facto report of such repairs to the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator.
(2) 
It shall be unlawful to use any system that has been extended or undergone major alterations unless a disposal system use permit is issued pursuant to §§ 80A-6 to 80A-14 of this chapter.
C. 
Any existing system which is not functioning properly shall be subject to penalties as provided in this chapter.
[Added 3-14-2005 by L.L. No. 3-2005]

§ 80A-16 Design standards for convention systems.

Design standards for the construction, alteration or extension of any conventional sewage disposal system addressed in these regulations shall conform to the criteria and guidelines of the most recent issue of the Wastewater Treatment Handbook - Individual Household Systems, published by the New York State Health Department.

§ 80A-17 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Any person owing, controlling or managing any building, structure, land or premises therein or whereon there shall be placed or there exists a structure or system in violation of these regulations; and any person who shall commit or assist in the commission of any violation of these regulations or who shall build, erect, construct or attempt the same any structure contrary to the plans or specifications submitted to the authorized official and by him certified as complying with these regulations; and any person who shall omit, neglect or refuse to do any act required by this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $500 to be recovered by the Town Board of Fort Edward in any court of competent jurisdiction. Every such person shall be deemed guilty of a separate offense for each day that such violation, disobedience, omission, neglect or refusal shall continue. Where the person committing such violation is a partnership association or corporation, the principal executive officer, partner, agent or manager may be considered to be the person for the purposes of this section.
B. 
In the case of a violation which creates a nuisance or condition potentially detrimental to public health, the Town Board shall also exercise the powers and duties provided in New York Public Health Law, Article 13. These powers and duties include, but are not limited to, entering upon, inspecting and examining any premises where such a nuisance or condition is known or believed to exist and ordering the suppression and removal of any nuisance or condition detrimental to life and health.
[Added 3-14-2005 by L.L. No. 3-2005]

§ 80A-18 Variances.

[Amended 3-14-2005 by L.L. No. 3-2005]
When the Town Board finds that extraordinary and unnecessary hardships may result from strict compliance with these regulations, it may vary the regulations so that substantial justice may be done and the public health and safety secured, provided that such variations will not have the effect of nullifying the intent and purpose of these regulations.

§ 80A-19 Waivers.

[Amended 3-14-2005 by L.L. No. 3-2005]
Where the Building Inspector/Zoning Administrator finds that, due to special circumstances, certain preapplication procedures or application information requirements contained herein are not necessary in the general interest of the public health, safety and general welfare, he may waive such requirements.

§ 80A-20 Most restrictive provisions to prevail.

Where the conditions imposed by any provisions of these regulations are less restrictive than comparable conditions imposed by any other provisions of these regulations or of any other statute, ordinance, local law, order, rule or regulation, the provisions which are more restrictive shall govern.

§ 80A-21 Effect of regulations.

The adoption of these regulations shall not affect or impair any act done, offense committed or right accrued or required or liability, penalty, forfeiture or judgement incurred prior to the time these regulations take effect.

§ 80A-22 Appendix A, Procedures for Site Evaluation.

APPENDIX A
Procedures for Site Evaluation
A.
Soil borings/visual analysis.
(1)
Soil borings shall be of any type of boring or excavation capable of revealing the characteristics of the soils penetrated in detail:
(a)
Each boring or excavation shall be made to a depth at least two (2) feet deeper than the bottom of the proposed system.
(b)
Each hole shall be numbered, and its location shall be plotted on a dimension sketch of the lot or building site.
(c)
Soil texture and firmness of soil texture shall be recorded by depth and notations made where texture changes occur.
(2)
Particular effort shall be made to determine the highest known water table.
(a)
Record the first occurrence of mottling in the hole.
(b)
If mottling is not encountered, the open test holes may be backfilled immediately.
B.
Percolation tests.
(1)
For standardizing test hole dimensions:
(a)
Each test hole shall be a minimum of twelve (12) inches square, have vertical sides and be dug to one-half (1/2) the depth of the proposed individual sewage treatment system. If more than one (1) soil type is encountered in a test hole, a percolation test shall be done in each soil type.
(b)
Each test hole shall be numbered, and its location shall be plotted on a scale map of the real property of building site.
(2)
For proper preparation of the test hole:
(a)
The bottom and sides of the hole shall be carefully scratched to remove any smearing and to provide a natural soil surface into which water may penetrate.
(b)
All loose material shall be removed from the bottom of the test hole and two (2) inches of one-fourth- to three-fourths-inch stone shall be added to protect the bottom from scouring.
(3)
For proper soil saturation and swelling.
(a)
Presoak the test hole by periodically filling the hole with water and allowing the water to seep away. This procedure shall be performed at least four (4) times and shall begin one (1) day before the test except for clean sand and gravel.
(4)
For proper percolation rate measurement:
(a)
In sandy soils, adjust the water depth to eight (8) inches over the soil at the bottom of the test hole. From a fixed reference point, the drop in the water level shall be measured in inches to the nearest one-sixteenth (1/16) inch at approximately ten-minute intervals. A measurement can also be made by determining the time it takes for the water to drop one (1) inch from an eight-inch reference point. If eight (8) inches of water seeps away in less than ten (10) minutes, a shorter interval between measurements shall be used, but in no case shall the water depth exceed eight (8) inches. The test shall continue until three (3) consecutive percolation rate measurements vary by a range of no more than ten percent (10%).
(b)
In other soils, adjust the water depth to eight (8) inches over the soil at the bottom of the test hole. From a fixed reference point, the drop in the water level shall be measured in inches to the nearest one-sixteenth (1/16) inch at approximately thirty-minute intervals, refilling between tests to maintain an eight-inch starting head. The test shall continue until three (3) consecutive percolation rate measurements vary by a range of no more than ten percent (10%). The percolation rate can also be made by observing the time it takes the water level to drop one (1) inch from an eight-inch reference point if a constant water depth of at least eight (8) inches has been maintained for at least four (4) hours prior to the measurement.
(5)
For calculating the percolation rate:
(a)
Divide the time by the drop in water level to obtain the percolation rate in minutes per inch.
(b)
Percolation rates determined for each test hole shall be averaged to determine the final soil treatment system design.
(6)
For reporting the percolation rate, worksheets showing all calculations and measurements shall be submitted to the Department of Code Enforcement.
(7)
A percolation test shall not be run where frost exists below the depth of the proposed soil treatment systems.