The current wastewater system was constructed as a result of resident concerns about the impact of failing wastewater systems on their lake. Hartland and Tyrone Townships petitioned the Drain Commissioner in 1986 to construct a system that would eliminate these impacts. The Drain Commissioner’s office constructed the system under Chapter 20 of the Michigan Drain Code. Construction of the system finished and became operational in 1989. It currently serves 184 homes around the lake.
The wastewater treatment facility is located on a 30 acre piece of property, north of the lake and utilizes collection tanks and ten separate septic fields to discharge the wastewater into the ground. As a result, this system is considered a “groundwater discharge” system. A system which discharges to a water body such as a river or stream would be considered a “surface water” discharge system. The collection portion of the system consists of buried pipe that runs around the perimeter of the lake, as well as the individual septic tanks and pumps at each of the home sites.
The maintenance of the system is overseen by the Livingston County Drain Commissioner’s office. It is a mandated function of the office to maintain any infrastructure built pursuant to the Michigan Drain Code. In some ways, it is similar to a County road system in which the County Road Commission has an obligation to maintain the public roadways in Livingston County. The responsibilities include maintaining compliance with State law, repairs, inspections, general site upkeep, emergency response, and any other function generally considered due diligence for wastewater facilities.