Septic Permits

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2021

Wastewater System (Septic) Permit applications may be submitted to our office between the hours of 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.  and 1-5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Applications may also be faxed, emailed, or mailed.

Wastewater Septic Permit Application 2022 (must open in Adobe Reader to enable electronic signature)

  • Wastewater System (Septic) Permit applications are available in our office or the link above.
  • Our office staff will help you fill out the application. Please do not hesitate to ask for help.
  • All on-site wastewater treatment system must follow Wastewater Treatment and Disposal Regulations

Process for Wastewater System (Septic) Permits

What You Need to Do

You must complete a Wastewater System (Septic) Permit application for the proposed wastewater treatment system. This application must be signed by all property owners on record for the subject property.

DEQ Approval

If the wastewater treatment system has received approval through the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Sanitation in Subdivision review, please provide a copy of the subdivision approval statement or subdivision name for our staff to obtain a copy of the approval.

Site Evaluation

If the wastewater treatment system has not received DEQ approval, a Site Evaluation must be completed. It is the property owner’s responsibility to schedule the Site Evaluation, pay the site evaluation fee, and hire an excavator to dig a soil test hole 8-12 feet deep while the RCEH representative is present. It is also the owner’s responsibility to mark the test hole with a 10-foot long, perforated 4-inch PVC pipe installed vertically to a depth of at least 8 feet.

Groundwater Monitoring

If the Site Evaluation identifies the need for groundwater monitoring (e.g., reveals evidence of seasonally high groundwater based on soil characteristics, observed groundwater, wetland vegetation, or irrigation), monitoring must be conducted during the seasonally high groundwater period, typically March to October. RCEH will conduct the monitoring after the owner has completed a groundwater monitoring application and paid the applicable fees.

Floodplain Determination

If the proposed wastewater treatment system is within 300 feet of a delineated floodplain, a floodplain determination is required prior to issuance of the permit. Please contact the Ravalli County Planning Department (375-6530) for a floodplain determination.

Non-degradation Analysis and Water Sample

If the permit is for a new dwelling or structure, Non-degradation analysis is required. For an increase in use (increasing bedroom count or commercial use) you may need a non-degradation analysis, depending on the previous approved use. For parcels with DEQ approval, a non-degradation analysis should have already been completed as part of the DEQ review process. For parcels without DEQ approval, the analysis will require a water sample test for total nitrogen (nitrate plus nitrite) completed from the nearest well.

Our office may provide the water sample container, but the sampling, submittal, and the cost for analysis will be the responsibility of the property owner. For RCEH to conduct the Non-degradation analysis, the following must be submitted:
  • Completed Non-degradation Analysis application
  • Non-degradation analysis fee payment
  • Background nitrate test results
  • Aerial map marking the location of the well where the sample was taken. Our office can provide the aerial map and the applicant mark the location. 

What You Need to Bring

Please be able to provide the following items:
  • Septic Permit application signed by ALL property owners on record 
  • Property address (we will not be able issue a permit without a legal address)
  • Property Tax ID #
  • Name of Certified Installer (if known)
  • Fee payment (see Fee Schedule for amounts)
Much of this information can be obtained from your tax assessment and/or property records. We may also be able to assist you with locating this information.