Technical Advisory Council


Onsite Wastewater Treatment

March 11, 2004


Meeting held, March 11, 2004 at Michigan State University, Turfgrass Research Center.


Members and alternates present:   Ted Loudon, Del Mokma, Ric Falardeau, Steve Aguinaga, Ron Lindsay, Larry Stephens, Chuck Cousino, Dan Wagner, Ben Foster, Gary Rowe, Dan Stock, and Gary White.


Guests present:  Steve Brown,


Meeting called to order by Chuck Cousino, Chairman.


Motion by Ted, support by Dan Stock, that the minutes of the January 20, 2004 meeting be approved as distributed with minor amendments discussed. 




Filter Fabric Specifications for Use Over Drainfields--- After further discussion on this subject, the following were suggested as the beginning set of fabric specifications:


Weight --- Not to exceed 1 oz. per square yard

Apparent Opening Size --- Between 20 and 70 Seive Size


Trapezoidal Tear --- to be provided

Puncture Strength --- to be provided


Ben will prepare a letter to be sent to several manufacturers with these specifications, asking for feedback and samples of fabric they make that would meet these specifications.  We will try to have this information by the next meeting so that we can begin to wrap this up and prepare a recommendation.


Commercial Flow Study --- Ted passed out some preliminary study information done by one of the students at MSU.  He will probably need to put another student on the project because the current student is graduating.


Residential Flow Study --- Larry explained his thinking on a rational method of interpreting the flow study results in the design of cluster systems.  The process would involve a statistical evaluation of 1,000 or more actual records of individual residential flow records.  T.A.C. members are encouraged to feed any individual flow records, or ways to obtain them, to Larry for use in this effort.


Site Compaction Advisory --- Del passed out and the T.A.C. reviewed a draft of his cover document on soil compaction.  Members contributed some editorial comments to Del’s work.

Del will finalize this for adoption as a formal advisory at the next meeting.


Ted did check with the University on the possibility of selling the signs through the training center.  MSU says it can be done.  Del and Ted will put together the final details for distribution.  Those interested in purchasing signs should get in touch with Ted or Del.


Operating Permits --- Ric has not had much time to work on this effort.


MEHA Ready Reference --- Gary reported that Tony Drautz of Oakland County was working on finalizing the wastewater section of this manual for the MEHA conference next week.


Michigan Concrete Tank Association --- Dan Wagner reported that the association of tank manufacturers has now been formed.  Dan introduced Steve Brown of Brutsche Concrete Products, Battle Creek, as an interested tank manufacturer.  Dan has been trying to find out what is under consideration nationally with regard to a precast septic tank standard, thinking that if something was being done nationally, we might be able to benefit from that effort.


Dan also passed out some information he has done in testing a product called KrytonKim HS, a concrete additive that basically creates a concrete tank that “heals itself”.  Over time, the additive reacts to leaks and forms a seal.  The use of the product would add an estimated $30 to $50 to the cost of a concrete tank.




Statewide Code --- Ric, Ted, Chuck and Larry filled members in on the first meeting of a Taskforce that has been formed to work with DEQ staff on the development of a uniform statewide code for onsite wastewater treatment.  Meetings are to be held about every two weeks.  Several TAC members are representing different groups on the taskforce.


Revision of Guidance Document for Cluster Systems --- This document was made obsolete by the recent Court of Appeals decision, and has been removed from the MOWRA website.  DEQ has had some internal meetings on this subject, but has not come to any decision in the matter.


TAC Recommendations for Septic Tank Effluent Filters --- Dan Wagner brought up a request by Washtenaw County Health Department for the TAC to issue recommendations on effluent filters.  This points to another area of need, but it is also another area of product approval that the TAC does not have the means to address at the current time.


Training Center --- Ted brought up a need to have the facilities at the Training Center repaired and updated.  This generated significant discussion on the need for training of new employees at County Health Departments. 


Australian International Wastewater Conference --- Ted recently attended an International Conference on Wastewater Treatment in Australia.  He reported some of the interesting technology he observed.  The proceedings will be available on CD. 




Next Meeting – April 28, 2004


Location --- MSU, Turfgrass Research Center




Future Meeting Dates:  


 June 8, 2004




                                                                                    Larry D. Stephens, P.E., Sec.