Appeal Process

On-Site Wastewater

All staff decisions concerning septic systems may be appealed to the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). However, since there is a fee for these appeals, it is recommended that you first thoroughly discuss the reasons for your denial with a staff sanitarian.


You have the right to apply for a variance from the particular requirements of the rules or standards pertaining to the subsurface sewage disposal system for which you were given a denial. A variance may be given if the variance officer finds:


a. A subsurface sewage disposal system will function in a satisfactory manner so as not to create a public health hazard or cause pollution of the public waters of the State of Oregon.
b. Special physical conditions exist which render strict compliance unreasonable, burdensome or impractical.


Variance application forms can be obtained from the Subsurface Sanitation Program or from the local DEQ office.


NOTE: before applying for a variance consider carefully whether the system will function satisfactorily. Denials based on extremely severe soil or topographical conditions will probably not be granted a variance. It is recommended that you discuss your variance potential thoroughly with the Subsurface Sanitation Program personnel before applying.


Building Safety

If a permit applicant wishes to challenge the decision of an inspector or plans examiner, they may contact the Building Official directly. Beyond the Building Official, the Oregon Residential Code requires that the local jurisdiction establish an appeals procedure in accordance with OAR 918-020-0090(1)(c). This requirement is satisfied by the Building Appeals and Advisory Board established by Lane Manual 3.520. A written appeal may be made to this boards along with the appropriate appeals fee. Any person aggrieved by the final decision of an appeals board at the local level may appeal to the appropriate advisory board at the State Department of Consumer and Business Services in accordance with ORS 455.690.


Please visit the Lane County Planning Program home page for information on appeals processes associated with land use and zoning decisions.