Water & Sewer Administration

Mission Statement

The mission of the Water and Sewer Administration Division is to provide support to the operating divisions of the Department. This includes establishing "policy" pursuant to City guidelines and coordinating with other departments whose facilities or personnel may be affected by our operations. This Division monitors personnel actions, purchasing, and payroll functions of the Department and provides the interface for handling citizen complaints.

Congratulations to Robert J. Bolton, Director of Water and Sewer

Rob was named the Government Engineer of the Year! This award is given by the Florida Professional Engineers in Government to the engineer who has made the most outstanding contribution to the advancement of engineers in government.

In addition to many other accomplishments, a few of the more notable ones were:

  • The Septic Tank Effluent Pump (STEP) System which was an attempt to reduce nutrient levels in the Indian River Lagoon.
  • The Upgrading Solids Handling Wastewater Treatment Plant Facilities – Clean B Residuals Treatment which will ultimately provide a more cost effective process.
  • The development of a storm water pump station project which helps to reduce the amount of dissolved nitrogen entering the Indian River Lagoon.


 Vero Beach, FL Code of Ordinances

Sec. 78-83. - Private wastewater disposal systems; septic tank effluent pump (STEP) system program

(a) Private wastewater disposal systems. 

(1) Where a public sewer is not available for connection to a building sewer, the owner of the building sewer shall connect the building sewer to a private wastewater disposal system in accordance with this section, section 22­.181. and any applicable requirements of the county public health department and the state department of health. The owner shall operate and maintain the private wastewater disposal system in a sanitary manner at all times, at no expense to the city. 

(2) Within 75 days after a public sewer becomes available for connection to a property served by a private wastewater disposal system, the .property owner shall directly connect the building sewer to the public sewer in compliance with this Code, including this chapter, and any applicable resolutions. The property owner shall abandon and seal off any septic tanks, cesspools, and similar private wastewater disposal facilities located within or on the property. 

(3) Property owners constructing, operating, and abandoning private wastewater disposal facilities shall comply with all applicable state and local laws and regulations in addition to complying with those requirements expressly stated in this article. 

(4) Commencing January 1, 2016, each owner of a private wastewater disposal system shall cause the pump out of the system on a regular frequency not to exceed every five years. In addition to the pump out, the owner shall have a licensed septic tank contractor perform an inspection of the private wastewater disposal system. For each such inspection the septic tank contractor shall complete a septic tank pumping inspection report in the form specified by the director and file such report with the city within ten business days. 

(b) Septic tank effluent pump {STEP} system program. 

(1) Program established. A septic tank effluent pump (STEP) system program is hereby established to facilitate the conversion of properties utilizing private wastewater disposal systems (e.g., septic systems) to a modified septic tank effluent pump (STEP) system and thereby enable an affordable and convenient method for the capture and transmission of effluent to the city wastewater treatment plant for proper treatment and disposal. Each STEP system shall be a component part of the municipal wastewater utility system owned by the city and constructed, connected, operated, and serviced pursuant to the provisions of this section and all other applicable codes, laws, regulations, resolutions, and specifications. 

(2) Ownership/title. All city-provided components of the STEP system and facilities are owned by the city before, during, and after completion of the installation on the real property of each individual property owner, or other utility customer, and title to such components remains with the city. The city consents to transfer of the property owner's individual interest in the subject real property so long as the city's ownership of the STEP system, the access easement required pursuant to this section 78-83. and any outstanding STEP system special assessment or lien are appropriately noticed and reserved in the documents of conveyance. 

(3) Participation voluntary,• exceptions. Not with standing any provision of this Code to the contrary, participation in the STEP system program and connection to a city low pressure sewage collection system when it becomes available shall not be mandatory except at such time there is a failure of the private wastewater disposal system. In addition, abandonment and sealing of the septic tank and other private wastewater disposal facilities shall not be mandatory upon installation of a STEP system on a property and connection to a city low pressure sewage collection system, but only to the extent such facilities are operational within applicable regulations and specifications and are used in conjunction with the STEP system. 

(4) Application required. Installation of a STEP system shall require submittal and approval of a STEP system application as provided in this subsection (b). 

a. Form of application. The STEP system application shall be in the form prescribed by the director and shall be submitted with copies of all permits and letters of coordination required from all other regulatory agencies together with the applicable fees. The application shall include agreement of the property owners to be bound.