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Fort Neck - Ninigret Pond

Town of Charlestown - On-Site Wastewater Management Program

The Wastewater Management Office operates as part of the Public Works Department under Town Ordinance No. 210 and at the direction of the Wastewater Management Commission. The Wastewater Management program was initiated to protect our most important natural resources in Town, our groundwater and surface water bodies including our Salt Ponds. 

All of Charlestown relies solely on groundwater for drinking water (through private and public wells) and every household and business in Charlestown relies on septic systems for sewage disposal. Therefore, malfunctioning and failing septic systems have the potential to significantly impact human health and the environment. 


Proper maintenance and care of your septic system is of utmost importance. Charlestown’s septic system maintenance program is designed to enhance your septic system performance and longevity, while minimizing costs. The program tracks the status of all septic systems in Town through a required inspection process and records are maintained in a comprehensive database. All Septic System Inspections must be conducted by one of the Town Approved Septic Service Providers.

If you have an Advanced or Denitrification Septic System please see the Advanced/Denitrification Septic System Page.

An important element of the program is the flexibility of inspection frequency, which is based on your septic systems history: How often you have your system inspected can be adjusted in order to match the need for pumping, and thus can vary from one to five years. 

Town Required Inspections:

There are three types of inspections that are required by the Town:

1. A baseline inspection (First Maintenance Inspection) for all new conventional septic systems is required three years from the startup date. All existing septic systems in Charlestown were required to have a first maintenance inspection completed by 2006. The purpose of the first maintenance inspection for existing systems was to inventory the systems in Charlestown and identify those in need of repair or replacement. A pumpout is not an inspection. 

2. Subsequent Routine Maintenance Inspections at intervals of between three to five years, depending on the results of your previous inspection are then required for your septic system. Additionally, all septic systems are required by Ordinance to be inspected at or before a point of sale by an approved septic system inspector.

3. Point of Sale Inspection - At any point of sale or property transaction, if a septic system inspection has not been conducted in one year, a point of sale inspection must be conducted prior to the property transfer. These inspections are required to protect the potential buyer and to identify systems in need of upgrade or repair. All inspectors should be following the standardized guidelines set forth in the Septic System Check-Up Handbook when conducting a functional inspection. One of the important components of a functional inspection is to accurately determine the hydraulic capacity of a system. For more information on functional inspections Click Here

All inspections must be conducted by a Town of Charlestown Approved Septic Service Provider who is required to upload the inspection information to the Towns Septic System Database. First Maintenance and Routine Maintenance Inspections are completed using this Town of Charlestown Conventional OWTS Inspection Form. You will receive a copy of this completed form from your service provider who will also provide the Town Office of Wastewater Management with a digital copy. 

Septic History / Property Search Using

Homeowners and realtors are now able to perform a limited search of the Town’s Septic System Database using Users can access inspection reports, property information and learn about the septic system inspection process. To search for information on your property, please visit the website above and use the search criteria to find your property. You can then click "view history" to bring up septic system inspection reports.


The information provided in this program is provided "as is" and is for reference use only. The user expressly agrees that the use of this web site is at the user's sole risk. The documents published on this website may be incomplete and contain technical inaccuracies or typographic errors. The database is constantly updated and these changes may not be immediately reflected on this website.

If you have any questions or would like to report any inaccuracies of the data please e-mail us at