Seneca County will begin inspecting private septic systems after supervisors adopt new local law

The Seneca County Board of Supervisors approved a local law mandating inspections of private septic systems within 250 feet of lakes and canals.

The law applies to properties being sold that have septic systems now.

It’s the Seneca County Watershed Protection Law and takes effect April 1, 2022. The weighted vote to adopt the local law won by a 535-157 margin.

Supervisors Ernie Brownell (Junius), Michael Reynolds (Covert), David Hayes (Romulus), and Ron McGreevy (Tyre) all opposed the law. Brownell even made a motion to send the local law back to committee. However, the motion fell short of the needed 376 weighted votes to send it back.

“Rather than cut and paste a law from another county, maybe you should make it specific to Seneca County,” Tom Scoles said during a public comment period. The meeting in Ovid was streamed live on “I don’t see any administrative support, and I think it needs revisions, even though it has merit.”

The law requires regular inspections by certified individuals. Deficiencies would be fixed by approved contractors. Inspections will take place every five years.

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