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Parliamentary Questions

Question On Notice No. 2567 asked in the Legislative Council on 15 October 2019 by Hon Tim Clifford

Question Directed to the: Parliamentary Secretary representing the Minister for Health
Minister responding: Hon R.H. Cook
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

(1) I refer to comments made by the Minister for Health in an Echo Newspaper article on 20 July 2019 in relation to the Chalet Rigi restaurant in Piesse Brook in which the Minister was quoted saying “I am prepared to grant the development an exemption from the sewer requirement and allow the use of an on-site wastewater system, subject to compliance with the conditions imposed by the DOH”, and I ask:
(a) has this exemption been granted; and
(b) will the Minister please provide details of what the exemption relates to:
(i) including the type of wastewater system;
(ii) the location and size of the system; and
(iii) any conditions placed on the exemption by the Department for Health?
(2) The wastewater system relates to a development application to increase the patronage at Chalet Rigi from 80 to 480. A previous application to increase the maximum number of patrons was rejected based on Department of Water advice, that to avoid risk of groundwater contamination a maximum of 80 patrons would be appropriate. What circumstances have changed that led the Minister to provide the exemption given the risks noted previously by the Department of Water?
(3) Is the Minister aware that Chalet Rigi is located in the Middle Helena Catchment Area P2, which is protected for drinking water?
(4) In making this decision, did the Minister consider the affect the wastewater system would have on the dams in the area that provide drinking water for 5 households?
(5) If yes to (4), what conclusions did the Minister draw about the effect of the wastewater on the quality of the drinking water in the area?

Answered on 19 November 2019

I am advised: 

(1)(a)-(b) Yes.

(i) Biomax C80.

(ii) The location details are determined from the information provided with the application to install the wastewater system. The Biomax C80 is capable of treating 14,4 kl/day of wastewater.

(iii) The development is required to comply with other legislation, including the Planning and Development Act 2005

(2) Higher effluent quality is produced by the Biomax system compared to a standard septic tank system and disposal calculations, as per Australian Standard 1547:2012 – On-site domestic wastewater management. 

(3)-(4) Yes. 

(5) The wastewater system produced is better quality than a septic tank, with effluent disinfected to achieve faecal coliforms (E coli) <10 colony-forming unit (cfu)/100ml, and there is adequate separation distances from water courses.