St. Mary's Health Department to Suspend PERC Testing

LEONARDTOWN, Md. (April 30, 2009)—Due to declining seasonal groundwater levels, St. Mary's County Health Department's Environmental Health Services division has suspended wet season perc testing for all soil types. Health department staff will be conducting the last perc tests for the season Friday, May 8.

"We must take this action because of the declining groundwater levels," said Daryl Calvano, Environmental Health Director, St. Mary's County Health Department. "We have noted this decline throughout our network of monitoring wells in the county."

Perc tests applications received during the last week of the season, which have not yet been scheduled, will be placed on hold and scheduled first when ground water levels are adequate for the next "wet season," expected in 2010. Applicants may request a refund; however, they must reapply when the "wet season" returns and will lose their place in line for scheduling.

St. Mary's County was forced to make a similar move last year due to dry conditions. They suspended testing for 2008 on March 21.

Perc tests are required to test the soil conditions to see if a building lot can sustain a septic system. If the lot passes the test, the results are also used to determine the specifications of the septic system that must be installed.

The inability to pass the perc test will prevent a home from being built on the lot.


St. Mary's Suspends Perc Testing Until 2009, March 25, 2008

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