BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
MONTROSE – The Lee County Board of Supervisors will hear the first reading Tuesday of a new ordinance that will require septic system contractors to be registered with the county.
The new language is being proposed for Title V of Lee County Code under Chapter 2 which oversees sewage treatment options, and will require all contractors working within the county to be registered with the county. To be registered, contractors must provide a $15,000 bond or letter of credit payable to the Lee County Treasurer and be certified by the state.
At last week’s Supervisors meeting, Lee County Health Departments’ Environmental Services Program Director Rosa Haukedahl made the proposal in order to bring the county in line with other counties in the state. Haukedahl said the cities of Fort Madison and Keokuk also require a bond for any septic system work within their respective city limits.
Haukedahl told supervisors the new ordinance will give the county more authority to help homeowners who may run into problems with septic system repairs or installation.
“What we want is for the homeowners to look a little deeper into the contractors that they’re hiring,” she said Tuesday. “We want to make sure the contractor is registered with the county and that we have the information. Then the homeowners know how to get a hold of this person if something goes bad.”
The new ordinance would add definitions for “Contractor” under the chapter on sewage treatment as well as “Registered Contractor”.
It also adds a section that outlines how contractors are now to be registered with the county, under what circumstances the Lee County Board of Health can forfeit the bond or letter of credit, as well as how an appeal process would work in the event the county did find reason to forfeit a contractor’s bond or letter of credit.
The ordinance also provides a $65 annual registration fee with the county, in addition to the bond or letter of credit.
In other action Tuesday morning, supervisors will consider:
• approval of a Lee County Personnel Policy
• approval of a tax abatement resolution
• approval of several county employee step pay increases