The Buncombe County Department of Health's division of environmental health
is responsible for septic permitting in the County. Correctly installed
septic systems protect public health by preventing groundwater contamination
resulting from improperly treated wastewater and sewage discharges
to the surface of the ground. Any person owning or controlling a
residence, place of business, or place of public assembly which
is not served by a public sewer must obtain a septic permit prior
to obtaining any building permits or initiating construction. Sites
proposed for development are evaluated for suitability of septic
systems in accordance with North Carolina sewage disposal laws and
rules under the authority of the Department of Environment and Natural
Resources (DENR). Roughly half of the population in Buncombe County
depends on septic tank systems for sewage disposal generating an
estimated 10 million gallons of wastewater per day to be treated
by ground absorption septic tank systems.
Effective January 1, 2005, the "Groundwater Protection Rules"
adopted by the Buncombe County Local Board of Health will require
that a well permit be obtained prior to drilling a well in the County.
Wells will be inspected by environmental health staff to ensure
compliance with existing State well construction standards. Properly
constructed wells reduce the chances of groundwater contamination
from surface contaminants. An application for a well permit must
be submitted in conjunction with all septic permit applications
except where municipal, community, shared, or other water supplies
are available to serve the intended project.
Applications for septic and well permits and required fees can
be submitted at the Environmental Health Division located on 30 Valley Street in downtown Asheville. Applicants will need to provide
the parcel identification number (PIN), a plat of the property,
as part of the application process. For additional information on
these and other services please contact us at (828) 250-5016 or visit
our office located at 30 Valley Street, Asheville, NC 28801.