Sewage management systems

There are a number of areas within the Maitland Local Government Area where a direct connection to Hunter Water reticulated sewer system is not available meaning that wastewater must be managed on site.

Council has a role of ensuring that on site wastewater treatment systems are installed, operated and maintained appropriately under the Local Government Act 1993.

Domestic wastewater treatment systems installed include:

  • septic tanks with evapotranspiration beds or absorption trenches
  • aerated wastewater treatment systems (AWTS)
  • effluent pump out system
  • composting systems (worm farms)
  • pump to sewer systems.

For enquires of premises connected to the reticulated sewer system please contact Hunter Water on 1300 657 657.

Please note: Whilst the same application is used, an approval to install, alter or construct an on-site sewage management system (OSSM) differs from an approval to operate and you must submit both depending on your circumstances.

Do I need approval before installing, altering or constructing an on site sewage management (OSSM) system?

Yes, approval is required from Council before a waste treatment system can be installed, altered or constructed.

To apply, please complete the application to install/construct and or alter a sewage management facility and submit your application in person at Council's administration building 285-287 High Street, Maitland (Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5.00pm) or by post to PO Box 220, Maitland 2320.

The application must include site plans, dwelling floor plan, system specification and NSW Health accreditation documents. Systems with on site effluent disposal will also require a site specific assessment report from an appropriately qualified Environmental Consultant. Application fees are payable at the time of lodgement.

It is important to contact Council's Environmental Health Officer on 02 4934 9700 before submitting an application to discuss any specific issues.

Do I need approval to operate an on site sewage management (OSSM) system?

Yes, every on site system requires an approval from Council to operate. An approval is issued once the application to operate a sewage management facility is received and where a satisfactory inspection is carried out, and/or where the service history indicates the system is regularly serviced and is in good working order.

Applications can be submitted in person at Council's administration building, 285-287 High Street, Maitland or by post to PO Box 220, Maitland 2320.

Property owners must comply with the conditions of their approval. Monitoring and inspections will be undertaken and the frequency of inspections depends on the risk level assigned to your system in accordance with council’s On-Site Sewage Management Policy.

Did you know? Approval to operate an OSSM system is not transferable. New owners must submit an application to operate an OSSM system within a period of three months after the date on which the land is transferred or otherwise conveyed to another owner.

It is an offence to operate an on site system without approval from Council.