Dakota County has septic system regulatory authority in the cities of Randolph and New Trier, Randolph and Waterford townships and the shoreland/floodplain areas in unincorporated portions of the County.
County Ordinance 113 – Subsurface Sewage Treatment Systems and Minnesota Rule Chapter 7080 detail septic system standards throughout Dakota County. The County maintains a list of standards found in County Ordinance 113 that are more restrictive than the state rule.
Any work on a septic system must be done by a licensed septic professional. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency maintains a list of septic professionals that are licensed to install, inspect, design and pump/maintain septic systems. Septic professionals may work anywhere in Minnesota and are not restricted to the city or county in which their company is located.
COVID-19 and your septic system
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a properly designed, installed and maintained septic system will safely manage the COVID-19 virus. There is no evidence to date that the COVID-19 virus has been transmitted by sewage systems, with or without wastewater treatment.
Minnesota septic systems are designed to avoid impacting drinking water supplies.
Only use toilet paper with septic systems
Even if toilet paper is in short supply, do not flush items that could be harmful to your septic system. Wipes, paper towels, napkins, rags and tissues are not designed for bathroom use and don't break down the same way as toilet paper. These items can clog pipes, tanks and be pushed to components of the soil treatment area. This can cause expensive repairs, more frequent pump-outs or the need for an entirely new septic system. Although many products are labeled flushable, don’t flush them.
Newly installed septic systems
An "as-built" compliance inspection consisting of a drawing and documentation on an inspection form specifying the final, in-place location, size and type of all septic system components is required for newly installed systems. The system must be inspected by a licensed inspector.
Compliance inspections for existing systems
Certain activities can trigger the need for a certificate of compliance on properties with existing systems. Some of these activities include:
- Expansion of a building served by a septic system.
- Changes in use of the property that could impact the system.
- Prior to the sale or transfer of property.
- Other times as specified in Ordinance 113.
If the system has not been issued a certificate of compliance in the last three years and is older than five years, a new inspection would be needed to recertify the system. A private Minnesota Pollution Control Agency-licensed inspector must do the compliance inspection. Compliance inspectors must submit their completed Compliance Inspection Reports to the local municipality with septic system jurisdiction.
According to Dakota County Ordinance 113, non-compliant systems must be upgraded to meet the standards of Ordinance 113 and Minnesota Rule Chapter 7080. After being notified of non-compliance by the local municipality, a homeowner has 30 days to resolve an imminent threat to public health or safety, and 10 months to permanently upgrade a non-compliant system.
Each city and township in Dakota County is responsible for their own administration, permitting, inspections and enforcement of their septic ordinance and program.
Each township (except Randolph and Waterford) and each city (except Randolph and New Trier) has their own municipal septic inspector.
For additional information on septic system records in Dakota County, contact Emily Gable at 952-891-7008 or firstname.lastname@example.org.