MPPDC considers remedy for title issues involving failed septic systems

by Bill Nachman - Posted on Dec 26, 2012 - 01:02 PM

The Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission received an update during its Dec. 19 meeting on a possible remedy for dealing with a failed septic tank where there is no clear ownership title.

Executive director Lewis Lawrence said the commission accepted the staff report on the matter and has heard that Del. Keith Hodges (R-Middlesex) has put in a bill for the General Assembly to consider this issue.

Lawrence said that there are instances where failed septic systems cannot be fixed because a property might be owned by many heirs and it is difficult to contact all of them to ascertain permission for repair.

As proposed, the septic tank could be fixed if the homeowner or another heir steps forward to pay the real estate tax bill, Lawrence said. In that way, all heirs would not to have to be notified. This would include instances where many individuals live out of state or even outside of the United States, he said, and failed septic systems could be more readily addressed.

Lawrence said that many families do not have clear title to their property. Without clear title, he said, it is almost impossible to get government or bank aid for improvements.

On a separate matter, the commission adopted a policy for nonperforming loans. Fortunately, the commission only has about $5,000 worth of nonperforming loans at present, Lawrence said, with one case where the loan recipient is behind on his payments for more than 1,000 days and another case that’s 600 days behind on making the loan payment.