New Mexico environment secretary calls for answer to septic tan...

Citing septic tanks as the top cause of ground water contamination in New Mexico, the state environment secretary Thursday called for weaning New Mexicans off the self-contained sewage systems. Full Story
PAUL F MILLER

Gilbert, AZ

#1 Jun 12, 2009
I invite my neighbors in New Mexico to consider the problem as outlined and disclosed by their government’s environmental spokesperson was at best selective with an overtone of bias or total misunderstanding of the circumstances which create the problem. The New Mexico environment spokesperson appears to use interchangeably the terms septic tank and cesspools, though in reality they are quite different animals and perform quite different functions. It is usual and customary to differentiate between septic tank systems and cesspools, the latter quite often do not utilize any form of tank, the cesspool being the place of all containment, treatment and disposal. Increasing the regulation on septic tank installation does not necessarily lead to increased regulation of cesspool installations

I do not live in New Mexico, I reside next door in Arizona whose environmental regulators successfully massaged the rules to “increase regulation of all septic tank systems.” Under their auspices Arizona has in rule approx. 140 pages of “law” reputedly governing the design, construction, installation, operation, maintenance and re-sale of residential property upon which is installed a septic tank system.

These rules which reputedly stipulated everything from the size of type required on permits, to on-site water testing of all septic tanks installed anywhere in Arizona, to mandatory certification of residential septic system as part of any sale of residential property upon which such as system is installed. Fast forward to June 2009, the landscape today is not much different than it was prior to January 2000 as Arizona state environmental regulators (city, state, county) have chosen for a variety of reasons NOT to enforce thereby contributing to continued pollution of the water provided to others as their source of potable (drinking) water. Sold to Arizona citizens as “one” set of rules applicable everywhere in Arizona has today been allowed to evolve into regulation and interpretation by choice by each of Arizona’s 15 separate county’s. Those aspects thought most advantageous to contributing to decreasing, if not overtime actually preventing, water pollution are summarily disregarded by every environmental regulator. There is NO enforcement of the requirement for mandatory on-site water testing of every septic tank installed. the mandatory re-sale septic certification program is a virtual travesty and serves only to put $50 into the State coffers while actually performing no viable function as it was by design developed to hold absolutely NO one accountable save “caveat emptor.” Oh, yes, Arizona realtors were quite vocal in diluting and making sure this “magic” piece of paper was absolutely meaningless, hey, but it is CYA.

CONTINUED IN ANOTHER POST
PAUL F MILLER

Gilbert, AZ

#2 Jun 12, 2009
CONTINUED FROM POST ABOVE ......
Surely, I jest, as this is NOT information provided to you by Arizona’s regulators at your seminars, conventions or other regional or national gatherings. Read my lips … let’s all get together under the format of two-way dialog and I’ll show up and you invite any/all Arizona regulator(s) and in a public forum allowing full, open, honest, timely disclosure let’s see what transpires … OK … call me when you’re ready…?

The simple solution is to conveniently point one’s finger, wagging it at the Arizona state environmental regulators chastising them for NOT enforcing to the letter of the law the 140 pages of highly prescriptive rules they so desperately sought to promulgate only to find its implementation to be a nightmare.

I too, want to point my finger and hold the Arizona state environmental regulators solely accountable and responsible for the debacle our vaunted Unified Permit Rules as they were called in January 2000 have become. The truth is –“we”– that’s you and me – did not want these rules to succeed as they in one-fell swoop upset everyone’s apple-cart.“We” were unwilling to make and take the time necessary to honestly build “buy-in” from the public, as that is a long and messy process fraught with peril. Taking a more convenient and politically expedient route “we” chose to mandate and stipulate – but – chose NOT to provide any EDUCATION expecting instead immediate compliance on the part of all Arizona citizens. How foolish…? But such a posture should be understandable when Arizona chooses to rank in the bottom five among the 50 states in most categories ranking commitment and funding of education…?

The reality is and evidence is available from EPA as well as Small Flows at the following email address … info@mail.nesc.wvu.edu … which clearly and concisely delineate how residential septic systems are viable aspects to a well orchestrated wastewater profile for communities to consider. Pulling septic tanks out of the ground as part of governmental preference for “big-pipe” gravity sewer systems, with sewage pumping stations, wastewater treatment plants and their attendant ancillary accruements is not in all cases the better long term solution. The residents of New Mexico might choose to talk to the “man-in-the-street” in Lake Havasu City or Bullhead City, Arizona and get their honest appraisal of how this “big-pipe-is-the-solution” process was unfairly and unjustifiably shoved down their throat by Arizona environmental regulators…?

Newer technology, bigger pipe, fancy wastewater systems do not necessary provide the better long term solution to many rural and smaller community searching for answer to their vexing issues respecting on-going pollution to their potable (drinking) water. The solution is “we”– that’s you and me – need to be individually accountable and responsible for all how we use water, dispose of water, consume water, in all aspects of our lives. This is a paradigm “we” are at the moment just beginning to comprehend.

We can continue to be the problem or we can choose to become the solution the choice is solely ours individually to make.

What’s yours…?

Respectfully,
Lagoon

Albuquerque, NM

#3 Jun 12, 2009
"I'm optimistic that we're going to be able to make a lot of headway, but it's not without the good cooperation with Farmington," Henderson said.
Henderson is our county rep but we never see him except when he walks the streets running for reelection. He never asks, just dictates.
Kirtland needs their own sewer system paid for by Kirtland residence, not Farmington or the County.
Bringing the Casino sewage to Farmington was bad enough but,pumping Kirtland waste 10 miles uphill to go into Farmington's system is a big waste of taxpayer money and the wrong people are paying for it !!!!
FIRE - FIRE - FIRE Henderson and Mayes
Dying Duck

Albuquerque, NM

#4 Jun 12, 2009
I am glad to see the State of New Mexico stepping up to the plate to force San Juan County to do something. Every time I fly over the San Juan River or the lakes by the power plants they are laden with my dead family members.
Taxpayer

Albuquerque, NM

#5 Jun 12, 2009
PAUL F MILLER wrote:
I invite my neighbors in New Mexico to consider the problem as outlined and disclosed by their government’s environmental spokesperson was at best selective with an overtone of bias or total misunderstanding of the circumstances which create the problem. The New Mexico environment spokesperson appears to use interchangeably the terms septic tank and cesspools, though in reality they are quite different animals and perform quite different functions. It is usual and customary to differentiate between septic tank systems and cesspools, the latter quite often do not utilize any form of tank, the cesspool being the place of all containment, treatment and disposal. Increasing the regulation on septic tank installation does not necessarily lead to increased regulation of cesspool installations
I do not live in New Mexico, I reside next door in Arizona whose environmental regulators successfully massaged the rules to “increase regulation of all septic tank systems.” Under their auspices Arizona has in rule approx. 140 pages of “law” reputedly governing the design, construction, installation, operation, maintenance and re-sale of residential property upon which is installed a septic tank system.
These rules which reputedly stipulated everything from the size of type required on permits, to on-site water testing of all septic tanks installed anywhere in Arizona, to mandatory certification of residential septic system as part of any sale of residential property upon which such as system is installed. Fast forward to June 2009, the landscape today is not much different than it was prior to January 2000 as Arizona state environmental regulators (city, state, county) have chosen for a variety of reasons NOT to enforce thereby contributing to continued pollution of the water provided to others as their source of potable (drinking) water. Sold to Arizona citizens as “one” set of rules applicable everywhere in Arizona has today been allowed to evolve into regulation and interpretation by choice by each of Arizona’s 15 separate county’s. Those aspects thought most advantageous to contributing to decreasing, if not overtime actually preventing, water pollution are summarily disregarded by every environmental regulator. There is NO enforcement of the requirement for mandatory on-site water testing of every septic tank installed. the mandatory re-sale septic certification program is a virtual travesty and serves only to put $50 into the State coffers while actually performing no viable function as it was by design developed to hold absolutely NO one accountable save “caveat emptor.” Oh, yes, Arizona realtors were quite vocal in diluting and making sure this “magic” piece of paper was absolutely meaningless, hey, but it is CYA.
CONTINUED IN ANOTHER POST
So what are you sayin'?
Taxpayer

Albuquerque, NM

#6 Jun 12, 2009
PAUL F MILLER wrote:
CONTINUED FROM POST ABOVE ......
Surely, I jest, as this is NOT information provided to you by Arizona’s regulators at your seminars, conventions or other regional or national gatherings. Read my lips … let’s all get together under the format of two-way dialog and I’ll show up and you invite any/all Arizona regulator(s) and in a public forum allowing full, open, honest, timely disclosure let’s see what transpires … OK … call me when you’re ready…?
The simple solution is to conveniently point one’s finger, wagging it at the Arizona state environmental regulators chastising them for NOT enforcing to the letter of the law the 140 pages of highly prescriptive rules they so desperately sought to promulgate only to find its implementation to be a nightmare.
I too, want to point my finger and hold the Arizona state environmental regulators solely accountable and responsible for the debacle our vaunted Unified Permit Rules as they were called in January 2000 have become. The truth is –“we”– that’s you and me – did not want these rules to succeed as they in one-fell swoop upset everyone’s apple-cart.“We” were unwilling to make and take the time necessary to honestly build “buy-in” from the public, as that is a long and messy process fraught with peril. Taking a more convenient and politically expedient route “we” chose to mandate and stipulate – but – chose NOT to provide any EDUCATION expecting instead immediate compliance on the part of all Arizona citizens. How foolish…? But such a posture should be understandable when Arizona chooses to rank in the bottom five among the 50 states in most categories ranking commitment and funding of education…?
The reality is and evidence is available from EPA as well as Small Flows at the following email address … info@mail.nesc.wvu.edu … which clearly and concisely delineate how residential septic systems are viable aspects to a well orchestrated wastewater profile for communities to consider. Pulling septic tanks out of the ground as part of governmental preference for “big-pipe” gravity sewer systems, with sewage pumping stations, wastewater treatment plants and their attendant ancillary accruements is not in all cases the better long term solution. The residents of New Mexico might choose to talk to the “man-in-the-street” in Lake Havasu City or Bullhead City, Arizona and get their honest appraisal of how this “big-pipe-is-the-solution” process was unfairly and unjustifiably shoved down their throat by Arizona environmental regulators…?
Newer technology, bigger pipe, fancy wastewater systems do not necessary provide the better long term solution to many rural and smaller community searching for answer to their vexing issues respecting on-going pollution to their potable (drinking) water. The solution is “we”– that’s you and me – need to be individually accountable and responsible for all how we use water, dispose of water, consume water, in all aspects of our lives. This is a paradigm “we” are at the moment just beginning to comprehend.
We can continue to be the problem or we can choose to become the solution the choice is solely ours individually to make.
What’s yours…?
Respectfully,
So what's your point? Just kidding. Well written.:-)
vermillion

Albuquerque, NM

#7 Jun 12, 2009
I live out in the county, and when I saw they were puting in the sewer line on HWY 64 to the casino, past my neighborhood I thought, finally I can get on the city sewer system, but from what I understand it's all just for the casino, I know several of my neighbors, including my self would rather be on the city sewer system,than a septic system.
C Lee Nickel

Albuquerque, NM

#8 Jun 13, 2009
In my neighborhood, there's a moratorium on new septic tanks, and there is no sewer service available, nor any sewer service planned.

When the moratorium approached, several people put septic tanks in on their vacant lots just so the lots didn't become worthless. Those who didn't, now own vacant lots that cannot be built upon, thus people now own land that cannot be used for anything but the cultivation of weeds.

Septic tanks are a tried and true method of dealing with human waste in rural areas. Properly operating septic systems do no harm to the environment.

Stand up to those who wish to become your masters by taking away your right to build your own home on your own property.

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