What is a Private Sewer Lateral?

A private sewer lateral is the portion of sewer system, beginning at the junction with the building plumbing system, usually located within two (2) feet of the foundation of the building and extending to and including the connection to the public sewer main. The private sewer lateral is owned by the owner of the property receiving service through the lateral. The property owner is responsible for all costs related to the installation, connection, maintenance, repair, construction, abandonment or removal of sewer laterals and private sewers.

Private sewer laterals that are defective are a source of infiltration and inflow (I/I) and if not regularly maintained become inoperable because tree roots enter the line and block the flow or misalign the pipe joints causing sewer backups and spills. Damages caused by sewer spills are very costly not only for property owners but also for the environment, particularly waterways.

The Private Lateral Replacement Grant Program is designed to help the property owner defray a portion of the costs required to replace or repair their lateral including the connection.