Tricounty News

Money available to help homeowners replace septic systems

Funding to assist homeowners in replacing subsurface sewage treatment systems is available from the State of Minnesota. The Stearns County Environmental Services Department can apply for these state grants on behalf of homeowners.

Eligibility for the grant requires that the homeowner have low income, the property is homesteaded by the applicant, and that the sewage treatment system is found to be an imminent threat to public health and safety. A sewage treatment system which is discharging sewage or sewage effluent to the ground surface, drainage system, ditch, storm water drain or directly to surface water, or causes a reoccurring sewage backup into a dwelling or other establishment is an imminent threat to public health and safety.

These funds are available for a limited time only. Residents of Stearns County who think they may qualify as low income and have a septic system that is an imminent threat to public health should contact Hank Schreifels or Mark Latterell at the Stearns County Environmental Services Department at (320) 656-3613, or (800) 450-0852. Applications need to be completed and in to Stearns County’s Environmental Services Department by Monday, Sept. 23, 2013.

The purpose of these grants is to protect and restore water quality. The source of the funding is the Minnesota Clean Water Fund, one of four funds established by the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment in 2008.

In the last three years, Stearns County’s Environmental Services Department received $900,000 to help low-income homeowners replace their septic system.