The Todd Krafft Septic Health Initiative program (“the Initiative”), developed in 2000, is a long-term strategy for protecting water quality while allowing the continued use of on-site wastewater systems in the Town. The Initiative is a voluntary program that is available to property owners consisting of four major focus areas. The program offers free services along with financial assistance for septic pumping, repairs, or replacements. Free services from the Town include locating septic systems, discussing concerns about installation and maintenance, inspections to detect problems early, and a follow-up report that outlines system location and whether it is in need of pumping or repair. In some cases, the Town will assist as a mediator between the property owner and the contractor, or with necessary permitting. The Initiative is a one-of-a-kind program in the Outer Banks and the State and is one of a few in the Nation.
As a part of the Initiative, the Decentralized Wastewater Management Plan was created in 2005 (“the 2005 Plan”). The 2005 Plan states that over 85% of all developed properties (4,339 total) were using onsite systems, and of those, 95% of the properties were in residential use. These numbers continue to grow with both the development and redevelopment of commercial and residential properties.
The intent of this update is to evaluate the overall effectiveness of the Plan and the Town’s Septic Health program, recommend additional measures as necessary, and expand and integrate the Plan, taking into account the relationship between onsite wastewater, stormwater, and groundwater.
The Advisory Committee was appointed to provide guidance and feedback to staff and the consultant on the update and development of the Decentralized Wastewater Management Plan. Advisory Committee members help to identify and engage stakeholders, attend community meetings and provide feedback on the plan. Advisory Committee members were appointed by the Board of Commissioners at their November 4th, 2020 meeting. Advisory Committee members are: