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Land Use
The Land Use Development Team oversees new construction demand services and performs monitoring inspections for alternative sewage treatment systems (ASTS). Demand or construction type services include permitting and/or oversight of water wells, septic systems (domestic and commercial), and land use development plan reviews.

Waste Water Disposal
The primary objective of proper wastewater disposal is to reduce and/or eliminate the potential contamination of groundwater, surface water, or the environment and its inhabitants. All projects that use onsite wastewater disposal require land review, permitting, inspection, and, in some cases, monitoring.

Tuolumne County Environmental Management is responsible for all onsite sewage disposal systems in the county. Sewer connections within city limits and some unincorporated areas of the county are served by a utilities district.

Building Project Clearances
Any building project which requires onsite sewage disposal, or that will increase sewage flow that could possibly impact existing or reserve sewage disposal areas will require a land use review. All new dwellings require a sufficient water supply of at least one gallon per minute, per dwelling. Larger projects, including commercial facilities, may require use permits.

Site Evaluations
The purpose of a site evaluation is to determine soil application rates for sewage disposal systems, locate limiting conditions such as groundwater or hardpan, discuss setback distances, and ultimately verify if a proposed project is feasible. Site evaluations are required when an onsite sewage disposal will be required for a new dwelling / structure / winery, for a septic system expansion or upgrade, and in some cases, for repairs.

A site evaluation is conducted by a Tuolumne County inspector alone or in conjunction with a qualified professional.

Alternative Sewage Treatment Systems
Alternative Sewage Treatment Systems (ASTS) systems are used when a conventional standard system cannot be installed due to site constrains. These systems usually consist of multiple septic tanks, recirculation tanks and pre-treatment systems, and pump tanks which evenly disperse effluent to a variety of pressurized drain-field types. Because these systems often use pumps, pre-treatment units, control panels, and alarms, they require additional monitoring and maintenance.

ASTS Monitoring
Due to the complexity of these systems and the site constrains which required their installation, all newly constructed ASTS systems are required to enter into the monitoring program. The monitoring program requires each system have a contracted service provider that monitors and maintains the system.

Water Wells
Applications will be reviewed for setback distances, proximity to hazmat sites, and proposed use. Water well applications for parcels located within flood zones or within the groundwater deficient area may have special requirements. Only licensed well drillers may apply for permits.

Geothermal Wells
Applications will be reviewed for setback distances, proximity to hazmat sites, and proposed use. Water well applications for parcels located within flood zones or within the ground water deficient area may have special requirements. Only licensed well drillers may apply for permits.

It is highly recommended that well drillers have previous geothermal well experience or training.

Hiring an Environmental Consultant
Although the County cannot recommend or endorse any particular consultant, the following is a list of known environmental consulting companies that are capable of performing work relating on-site wastewater systems and water wells for land development: Non-Exclusive List of Environmental Consultants

Environmental Health
Email

Physical Address:
A.N. Francisco Building
Floors 3 and 4
48 Yaney Ave
Sonora, CA 95370

Mailing Address:
2 South Green Street
Sonora, CA 95370

Telephone: 209-533-5633
FAX: 209-533-5616

Hours:
Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Telephone: 7:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Inspections Line:
209-533-5992