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Health Department begins scheduling field work for well and septic permitting

BARAGA, GOGEBIC, HOUGHTON, KEWEENAW, and ONTONAGON – Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-70, allowed the resumption of work that presents a low risk of COVID-19 infection. Construction, real-estate activities, and work that is traditionally and primarily done outdoors, such as Environmental Health fieldwork performed by the sanitarians of the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department (WUPHD), resumed as of May 7th.

WUPHD began scheduling site evaluations for the on-site sewage disposal and water supply program as soon as weight restrictions on state highways lifted. Site evaluations are performed by WUPHD as part of the required permitting process for the installation of a septic system or water well, and existing system inspections for real estate transactions. Permits for septic systems and water wells are necessary before obtaining local building permits. Request for service forms for all Environmental Health services are available at www.wuphd.org. Payment for services can also be made online at www.wupdhd.org/make-a-payment/.

WUPHD is committed to resuming services in a manner that is protective of public health and safety for contractors and staff. Educational materials regarding COVID-19 prevention were recently provided to all licensed sewage system installers, water well drillers, and consultants such as local engineers and real estate agents. New policies call for staff to participate in daily health screenings, and a simplified

screening of contractors and property owners will be required prior to beginning on-site work. Strict social distancing will be maintained while providing outdoor Environmental Health services and staff will

not be allowed to enter private homes.

All WUPHD offices remain closed to the public for walk-ins. Entry into buildings is by appointment only. Face coverings and health screenings are required for entry. Environmental Health staff are available

for consultation via phone or email. The public is encouraged to obtain well and septic permit applications online, request them via email at requests@wuphd.org, or by calling the office. Water testing kits, radon test kits, and Lyme disease tick specimen kits are available upon request, and arrangements will be made for pick-up. The Hancock office, located at 540 Depot Street, has request for service forms and permit applications as well as water testing kits available for pickup in their entryway between normal office hours, Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is a 24-hour drop box for permit applications located at the Hancock office by the main entrance.

For more information, please contact the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department at (906) 482-7382.

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