Technical Advisory Council


Onsite Wastewater Treatment

March 2, 2006


Call to Order


Meeting held March 2, 2006 Michigan State University, Agronomy Farm.


Members and alternates present: Chuck Cousino, Bill Danly, Tony Drautz, Ric Falardeau, Ben Foster, Randy Gregory, Corky Overmyer, Dan Wagner, and Regina Young.


Guests present: none


Review of agenda. Approved.


Meeting Minutes Reviewed. Motion by Corky, second by Ric, that the minutes of the January 16, 2006 minutes be approved. Approved with one descending vote.




MOWRA web postings-- Ben F. has posted approved minutes Regina will forward the 2006 revised members list for updating. Ben will look at changing the chronological order of the minutes so that the most recent are on top. Discussion about keeping all minutes on the web versus deleting those over two years. Consensus was to keep all minutes on the site but to reverse the chronological order.


Caution Tape—Ted needs to get the caution tape and sign order form to Ben F.


Commercial Flow Study—No progress reported. Chuck will get together with Del to see who could assist.


Concrete Septic Tank Manufacturer’s Association --- Dan sent out an inspection document for review and comment. Regina suggested additional pictures. Ben will forward some to Dan. Group discussed adding a section on effluent filters and pre-cast baffles. Regina, Tony and Randy will provide comment to Dan. Chuck discussed getting the publication completed and submit an article to MEHA for spring or summer newsletter. The intended audience is inspectors, installers and manufacturers. Discussion recognized that codes already state that watertight tanks are required. The document could serve as a pre-cursor to creating a TAC model policy on watertight septic tanks.


Dan has attended NPCA committee work for septic tanks. They are working on a homeowner’s guide. The NPCA Board has accepted the committee’s recommendations for septic tank specific plant certification. The tank only certification will be implemented at a reduced cost (below the cost of the full NPCA certification). Tank only certification will involve announced and unannounced inspections. A Quality Control manual to be used by the inspectors (private)  has been created. To be certified, there are laboratory and/or on-site (compression) testing equipment requirements. Dan discussed the financial outlay for a tank manufacturer to become equipped to be certified.


Training Center Update --- Discussion on how to get feedback from respective members of our associations regarding the curriculum. Tony suggested that any posting to MALEHA should be in the format of a survey. Consider an email out to the MEHA members. Discussion on the level of courses (beginners versus advanced). Chuck will put together a survey for distribution.


Community Systems --- Ric reported activity at MDEQ. There has been an increased level of interest and an increase in the number of proposals for private investor owned systems. The engineering proposals have shown a need for an improved process. The MDEQ has taken a step back to look at the entire process. A workgroup has been formed with MALEHA to create a whitepaper, which will ultimately be presented to the MDEQ Director. The draft entitled “Regulatory & Technical Guidance for Community On-site Wastewater Treatment Systems Utilizing Subsurface Dispersal” will be moving forward.


Total Inorganic Nitrogen limits have been recently implemented for Rule 2216 systems. The findings resulting from MDEQ compliance activities has identified elevated levels of nitrogen being discharged from constructed wetlands. Ric presented excerpts from the Part 22 Rules and specifically Rule 2204(f). Discussion followed on the current pre-treatment technologies and inability to reduce nitrogen to the level (less than 10 mg/L) that has been implemented.


Community wastewater systems processes and technologies will continue to change.


EPA Alternative Systems Database---Regina contacted Rod Frederick of EPA regarding the database. It is not yet available. Look for the release on the EPA website.


Technology and Education Transfer: tabled to next meeting


Water Softener Wastes--- Tony will contact Jim Rutherford and Bryant Wilke.


Statewide Code Taskgroup: Corky contacted Senator Birkholtz’s office regarding the status of SB71.




MDEQ Regulatory Structure:  The document needs to be updated. There have been changes since the 2003 version.


Alternative System Sampling:  Ric posed question of value of a TAC document regarding grab samples from alternative systems. All agreed that would be a valuable document.


Meeting adjourned at 12:40 PM.


NEXT MEETING  Thursday, April 20, 2006 at the Agronomy Barn




Regina Young, Secretary