Skip to page body Home About Us What's New City Government City Services Community Visitors Business How Do I...
Does the City offer Mediation Services?
How do I dispose of my old prescription medicine?
What do I do with my old batteries from home?
I have a septic tank. Who do I call?
There is a sewer backup in my house. What should I do?
There is sewage bubbling out of the ground or street. What should I do?
How much of my sewer lateral am I responsible to maintain?
I am thinking of adding a second unit to my house and was told I need to obtain a Sewer Connection Permit. Since my house is already connected to the sewer, do I need to do this?
If I have a project to expand or remodel my house, will I need to replace the sewer line?
Can I tie into my neighbor’s sewer lateral, or do they have the right to be using mine?
I have been reading about the sewage treatment plant being overwhelmed during heavy rainstorms. I thought sewers were separate from storm drains. How can this happen and is there anything I can do?
Who do I call if I have a sewer problem?

Q: Does the City offer Mediation Services?
A:

Mediation thumbnailLooking for Mediation Services?  The City of Mill Valley participates in the County of Marin Mediation Services Program to offer mediation services to residents of the City of Mill Valley. Click here to learn more.

 

Q: How do I dispose of my old prescription medicine?
A:

Outdated prescription medicine, pharmaceuticals you no longer use and sharps should be returned to your pharmacy for proper disposal.  Do not flush medicine and sharps down the toilet!  Some compounds used in making medicine can pass through wastewater treatment plants and into the Bay which can harm aquatic life. 

Some pharmacies will accept your old medications and sharps. Contact the County of Marin for a list of free drop off locations.

Q: What do I do with my old batteries from home?
A:

The City of Mill Valley participates in a battery recycling program. You can drop off your old household and cell phone batteries (sorry, no automotive batteries) at one of the following collection points:
City Hall
Library
Public Safety Building
Community Center 
SASM Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Look for the Blue Battery Recycling Barrel.

 

Q: I have a septic tank. Who do I call?
A:
If you own a septic system and need assistance with your system, contact Marin County Environmental Health Services: 415-499-6907.  Or visit their website.
Q: There is a sewer backup in my house. What should I do?
A:

During business hours, call the Department of Public Works at 388-4033. If they are unavailable, call the Police Dispatch Center at 389-4100.


 

Q: There is sewage bubbling out of the ground or street. What should I do?
A:

If the sewage is in your yard, contact a sewer service company immediately. Most local sewer service companies have after hours response crews. If it appears to be from a City main, contact the Department of Public Works at 388-4033 during business hours and the Police Dispatch Center at 389-4100 after hours.

 

Q: How much of my sewer lateral am I responsible to maintain?
A:

The City’s Municipal Code states that the owner of a sewer lateral is responsible for maintaining their sewer lateral all the way to the City main, including the portion within the right-of-way. This includes the fitting that branches the lateral off the main.


 

Q: I am thinking of adding a second unit to my house and was told I need to obtain a Sewer Connection Permit. Since my house is already connected to the sewer, do I need to do this?
A:

Click here to download the Sewer Connection Permit

The connection referred to here is not the physical connection of sewer pipe. It refers to allowing a dwelling unit to have its sewage transported by the City system and processed by the SASM treatment plant. The connection charge for second units is $1250 for dwelling units less than 700 Square feet and $4000 for units greater than 700 square feet. In addition, an annual Sewer Service Charge of $297 is levied on the second unit. The physical connecting of a second unit may also require a Plumbing Permit from the Building Department for work on private property and an Encroachment Permit for that portion of the work in the right-of-way.

 

Q: If I have a project to expand or remodel my house, will I need to replace the sewer line?
A:

If any work increases the number of plumbing fixtures, you will need to replace your sewer lateral unless you can demonstrate to the Department that it is a tightline pipe in good condition. A tightline pipe is either steel or plastic, so all clay piping will need to be replaced, and with the proper permits.

 

Q: Can I tie into my neighbor’s sewer lateral, or do they have the right to be using mine?
A:

Shared laterals are discouraged except for extreme circumstances where it is technically or environmentally infeasible to install a lateral into a City main sewer. This is because of the difficulty of assigning and accepting responsibility when repairs are needed or emergencies occur. Cost is not considered a qualifying factor. In the event that the Department concurs that a shared lateral is the only feasible alternative, a maintenance agreement between the parties must be prepared and recorded.

Regarding another property using your lateral, you should first refer to the title report for the property to find if there is a recorded easement. If there is no recorded easement, the property owner using your lateral may have continued rights of use through history of use. The City cannot assist in this determination, as it ultimately must be determined in court. Property owners are always encouraged to make all reasonable attempts to work with each other before seeking legal recourse.

 

Q: I have been reading about the sewage treatment plant being overwhelmed during heavy rainstorms. I thought sewers were separate from storm drains. How can this happen and is there anything I can do?
A:

There are two main reasons for this problem. One is connection of storm drains to the sewer system, which is illegal. If you have a downspout or area drain connected to your sewer, this should be corrected so the stormwater is discharged in an appropriate manner. The other common cause of this problem is old sewer lines, both City mains and private laterals. Older sewers were made of clay pipe, which can break or separate over the years, allowing rainwater in the ground to get into the pipe that leads to the treatment plant. You are strongly urged to have your lateral inspected and replaced if it is clay pipe. This will help reduce potential overflows at the SASM treatment plant.

 

Q: Who do I call if I have a sewer problem?
A:

For sewer line problems, call the Sanitary District you reside in.  SASM has six Member Agencies: 

Member Agencies                     Phone
1. Almonte Sanitary District (415) 388-8775
2.  Alto Sanitary District  (415) 388-3696
3. Homestead Valley Sanitary District  (415) 388-4796
4. City of Mill Valley (415) 388-4033
5. Richardson Bay Sanitary District (415) 388-1345
6. Tamalpais Community Services District (415) 388-6393

For Sewer Emergencies after hours, call Roto Rooter at:  (415) 388-2740

 

Free viewers are required for some of the attached documents.
They can be downloaded by clicking on the icons below.

Download Acrobat Reader Download WinZip Download Word Viewer Download Excel Viewer Download PowerPoint Viewer