Good Night! Irene

“What a mess…How can people live like that…How did you let it get that bad…” are only a few comments heard about the densely populated group of residences located on Irene Lane in Bell County. This 34 acre community is located 1.5 miles from the heart of the small Village of Salado, TX. This private road easement has 15 lots ranging from ½ to 3 acres each with only four permitted septic tanks. As this population grew to 30 water metered houses and sheds, this became a source of affordable rental residences for the construction boom in this region. Most of the lots were subdivided before the County Regulations set in 2001. As more mobile homes were moved in, they attached to the existing septic systems in their vicinity.

The public voiced their concern and asked us what we were going to do about it. We could not wipe it clean and start over so the Health District, County Commissioner, County Engineer, and Attorney met to form a game plan. The Health District’s Registered Sanitarian would submit a letter to the landowners of the lots. In the letter, the owners would have to provide documentation of permitted septic systems for each residence. If the residence did not have a legal tank, they would be given the option to obtain a legal permit and install new systems to comply with current laws. Some residences will not be able to comply since each lot has to meet a minimum of ½ acre to obtain a permit according to TCEQ regulations.

A period of time will be given to the owners to meet the requirements of the Health District. If they fail to do so, they will file a case with the Justice of the Peace. If the owners move future mobile homes to the property, they must submit a plan for a mobile home or RV park according to our current regulations. That plan will be reviewed by the County Engineer and meet guidelines for public/ emergency vehicle access. This is the plan we intend to enact to resolve the problem. Time will tell the outcome.

Submitted by Bryan Neaves, P.E. (4-28-15)

P.O Box 2573
Cedar Park, TX 78630
Phone: 512-260-1376

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