Massachusetts regulates on-site wastewater disposal systems through 310 CMR 15.000 (Title 5 Regulations). A new or replacement septic system design requires a Disposal System Construction Permit (DSCP) from the Board of Health and is based on a site plan stamped by a Civil Engineer or Registered Sanitarian. This plan is site-specific and based on the results of soil evaluations and perc tests done on the property as well as the topographical survey and location of buildings, wells, driveways and other components on the site. There are several steps included in the DSCP approval process:
- Engineer/Sanitarian submits the DSCP along with two sets of plans and application fee. The application fee varies based on the scope of work as well as whether it is a new or replacement system. Per the BOH fee schedule, the fees are as follows:
- Minor (D-Box and pipe replacment only): $50 Fee
- Major Repair/Replacement: $100 Fee
- New Construction: $250 Fee
For a replacement system the proposal often also includes what is called a "Local Upgrade Approval" which allows the BOH to grant minor allowances to ensure the septic system fits into the site. Note that LUA requesting reduction to groundwater requires that a licensed soil evaluator from the BOH witnessed the soil evaluation.
2. Plan Review: Once the application and fees are received by the BOH, the plan gets reviewed for compliance with 310 CMR 15.000 using a checklist. The designer receives feedback from this review process and sometimes is required to submit a revised plan. Once the plan is approved, the BOH Agent will approve the DSCP application, which indicates that they are satisfied with the proposal. NOTE: This is not a permit, but rather, an indication that the plan has been reviewed and accepted. Activities proposed within 100' of a wetland or 200' of a perennial stream will be referred to the Sandisfield Conservation Commission, who can be reached at email@example.com.
3. Issuance of a Disposal System Construction Permit (DSCP): A DSCP will be issued directly to the chosen licensed septic installer, typically shortly before the installation is about to take place. The installer must notify the BOH at least a week prior to start of work and keep the BOH informed of progress so inspections can be done at different points of construction.
4. Issuance of a Certificate of Compliance (CoC): A CoC will be issued once the septic system has been fully installed, inspected by the designer and BOH, all fees and paperwork have been received, and the following documents have been submitted:
- State CoC Form signed by the designer and installer, or a letter, indicating that the septic system has been installed according to the plan and 310 CMR 15.000.
- As-Built Plan that includes tie-off locations to all septic components
- Sieve Analysis, when applicable, from the material used to build the septic system.