Flushing your waste could cost you even more if septic proposal is enforced

Flushing your waste could cost you even more if septic proposal is enforced
By: Arnold Wyrick
In the very near future it could cost you a lot more to push the handle down and flush away your household waste.  The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency is proposing issuing permits to people who own septic systems.
And the proposal would also require homeowners to provide two samples yearly for testing of their septic system discharge.
"It's really an IEPA requirement, they would have the permit.  But then if there's other issues that relate to enforcement, or things to do with the maintenance of that system that's where we would probably be involved," says Kevin Gillespie Director of Environmental Health in Jackson County.
The cost to the homeowner for the septic water testing could cost anywhere from $166 to $230 per test.
The testing facilities have yet to be identified by IEPA.
But some manufactures of septic systems say the proposal is good for the state's water table.
"What's prompted this is basically people haven't been totally taking care of their systems.  And they've been letting it discharge onto the surface.  And it eventually gets into a neighbors property or something like that," says Cliff Skelcher of Skelcher's Concrete in Carbondale.
Still some homeowners aren't so happy to hear that they'll be the ones collecting the samples and paying for the testing of those samples.
"I don't want any more fees.  I don't think we'd know how to do it right.  We've never had any problems with our septic tank.  It doesn't smell.  I just think it's totally unnecessary for the little person to have to have the same requirements that a major commercial user has to have.  I'm very much against it," says Julia Stallings of Murphysboro.
Like it or not this proposal by IEPA is now headed to a series of public hearings to be scheduled towards the end of this year, or the beginning of next year.
If someone wants to get on the mailing list for the public hearing in their area, they have to send a hand written request to;

ILLINOIS ENVIROMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
WASTE WATER PERMIT SECTION
1021 NORTH GRAND AVENUE EAST
P.O. BOX 19276
SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS
62794