The purpose of this paper is two-fold:

To identify alternatives and/or improvements to conventional septic systems for residential sewage collection and treatment for small communities and residential developments.

To research existing ordinances that require on-going management of residential and community septic systems, disposal of septage, and develop a model septic system and septage management ordinance that can apply to Kent County communities.

It is hoped that this study’s recommendations will be adopted in Kent County. Eventually, Kent County’s model program can be used to effect statewide implementation of responsible environmental policies that will improve our environment and public health. The desired outcomes of better management approaches are the protection of human health and welfare, and protection of water resources from disease-causing bacteria, nitrates in groundwater, and high nutrient and pollutant levels.


Kent County, Michigan, Domestic Sewage, Sewage Collection, Sewage Treatment, Septic Systems


Natural Resources Management and Policy