Concerned about failing septic systems leaking into groundwater, the Washington County Board took action last week to help property owners replace them.

The county will administer a low-interest loan program, using funds from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Eligible residents can repay the loans through an assessment on property taxes.

Large portions of the county are served by private septic systems, and the county has said that failing systems lead to groundwater and surface water pollution.

Funds will be available to any property not connected to city sewer services. The county will administer applications, loans and payments, and perform financial reviews.

Recipients must live outside the Metropolitan Urban Service Area, where city sewer service is unavailable.

Kevin Giles