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Perry County Commissioners Agree to Address Unsanitary Conditions in Three Unsewered Areas

In a settlement with Ohio EPA, the Perry County Board of Commissioners has agreed to develop a plan to alleviate a public health nuisance in the unincorporated areas of Rehobeth, Old Rainer Rd. and Moore’s Junction (also known as Six Mile Turn).

The Rehobeth area consists of approximately 30 homes along State Route 345. A number of these homes have inadequate or failing on-site sewage disposal systems that pose health hazards and water pollution concerns as they discharge untreated or partially treated sewage to Rush Creek. There are approximately 25 homes along Old Rainer Rd., and a number of them discharge waste from inadequate or failing on-lot systems to a tributary of Moxahala Creek. Many of the approximately 50 homes in the Moore’s Junction area along State Routes 13, 37 and 93 and a few businesses there discharge improperly treated wastewater to ditches leading to Moxahala Creek.

After investigating complaints and concerns, the Perry County Health Department asked Ohio EPA to take action to eliminate unsanitary conditions. Ohio EPA sampled the three areas and found significant counts of fecal coliform and E. coli as well as untreated or poorly treated sewage and odors in streets, ditches and stream crossings. The data demonstrated a public health nuisance as pollution was entering waters of the state.

Since many of the homes in these areas are situated on lots that are too small to properly modify existing systems or install fully functioning systems, the Perry County Board of Commissioners agreed to submit a plan for sewage improvements or other methods of correcting the unsanitary conditions and pollution concerns.

The commissioners agreed to identify alternatives for treating sewage in the area (for example, decentralized or centralized treatment; connecting to sewers; and directing sewage to the nearest regional wastewater treatment plant). The plan also should propose, if appropriate, locations of collection and treatment facilities and a schedule for submitting permit applications, obtaining detailed plan approval and attaining compliance.

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