Washington County Environmental Health Department
Washington County Courthouse Annex
105 W. Main Street, Suite 100
Brenham, Texas 77833
Phone 979-277-6290 Fax 979-277-6291
Regular office hours are from 8am to noon and 1pm until 5pm, Monday through Friday (except 2017 holidays). With a small staff and many of our duties involving field work, the office may be closed temporarily on occasion; but you are always welcome to call ahead.
BURN BAN STATUS
Stop Raising Mosquitoes
FREE Household Hazardous Waste Collection April 2017
Our goal is to serve the citizens of Washington County and our many visitors by protecting public health and preventing pollution. We strive to provide efficient, courteous, and timely service, mindful that our actions must be based on common sense, good science, and fiscal responsibility. We hope you find this site helpful. Please contact our office if you have any questions, comments, or concerns.
The Environmental Health Department administers the following:
- On-Site Sewage Facility (OSSF - Septic System) Permitting
- Code Enforcement
- Floodplain Determination/Development Permitting
- Prescribed Burn Permitting
- Floodplain and OSSF (Septic System) Review for Land Division
For information on individual programs, please see that topic below.
Current Fee Schedule We accept Cash, Checks, Money Orders and Credit/Debit Cards.
Make Checks and Money Orders payable to Washington County. Please do not mail cash.
A fee for processing credit/debit card payments will be charged to your card and paid directly to Certified Payments.
Credit/Debit Card payments may also be made online and by phone thru Certified Payments.
To pay online: Go to https://certifiedpayments.net/index.aspx?BureauCode=5299494
To pay by phone: Call Certified Payments toll-free at 1-866-549-1010
Enter Bureau Code 5299494 when prompted.
If you have any problems or need assistance with online or phone payments, call Certified Payments at 1-866-539-2020.
On-Site Sewage Facility (Septic System) Permitting
This office administers septic system permitting throughout Washington County.
All new, altered, repaired, or enlarged septic systems require a permit before work begins, regardless of acreage. Routine maintenance such as tank pumping does not require a permit; however, you should receive a Manifest from the waste hauler and keep it for your records as proof of proper disposal.
When deciding what type of septic system to install on your property, it’s important to know all your options. Different types of septic systems, their required maintenance, and the overall long-term cost can vary a great deal depending on the type of system you choose to install; and you’re likely to have to live with it for years. For these reasons, permit applications are not available on-line or from any other source, and the property owner must contact our office for information on septic systems and to obtain a permit application. This is not intended as a burden, but rather to assist the owner in making an informed decision.
Washington County does NOT require any certain type of septic system, you have options, and may choose to install any system that meets code.
Frequently Asked Questions about OSSFs
Information for the property owner considering an aerobic "ATU" septic system
Permit application fees are $160 for single-family residential and $260 for all others. You will need the Legal Description of your property from your Deed to complete a permit application. This information is available from the Washington County Clerk and the Washington County Appraisal District.
Please see Septic System Permitting Information and Septic System Permitting Procedures for additional information. For a listing of some septic system professionals working in our area see our Septic System Services Directory. The permit application, fee, site evaluation, and design must be submitted to this office for review and approval before work on the septic system begins.
To help keep your septic system working properly or if it does not appear to be working well, see our Septic System Troubleshooting Guide for information on likely causes of problems, possible solutions, and preventing failure.
Septic system components must be installed certain distances from other features, such as water wells. For a complete list, see Minimum Required Separation Distances.
For additional information, to obtain a permit application, or to file a complaint, contact Renee Hamilton by e-mail at email@example.com, or by phone at 979-277-6290.
This office works to enforce a number of state and local laws concerning illegal waste dumping, outdoor burning, junk vehicles, dilapidated structures, and other public nuisances throughout the unincorporated areas of Washington County. Our enforcement strategy requires us to make choices about where to spend time and money for the best public benefit, and we strive to apply laws and regulations with integrity and fairness to all.
Burn Ban Status
Outdoor Burning Guidelines
Outdoor Burning Rules Guidance
Texas Constitution and Statutes
Texas Administrative Code
Texas State Law Library
Recycling Information from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Washington County does not enforce deed restrictions. Enforcement of such restrictions and covenants is typically initiated by the affected person by proceedings at law against the person violating the restriction or covenant, either to restrain violation or to recover damages.
For additional information, assistance, or to file a complaint, contact Jose Luis Gamboa by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at 979-277-6290.
To report an incident outside normal business hours call Communications at 979-277-7373
In the event of an emergency, dial 9-1-1
Floodplain Determination/Development Permitting
This office administers floodplain determination & floodplain development permitting for property located in the unincorporated areas of Washington County.
- For floodplain information on property in the City of Brenham call 979-337-7200.
- For floodplain information on property in the City of Burton call 979-289-3400.
TexasFlood.org is a website of the Texas Water Development Board that provides flood-related data and information on what to do before, during, and after a flooding event.
Because Washington County participates in the National Flood Insurance Program, permit applications and approval of all development within the floodplain is required before construction begins. Development and construction that occurs outside of the floodplain does not require a floodplain development permit.
Current flood maps of the unincorporated areas of Washington County may be viewed at our office, and are also available online thru several services.
1. The floodplain may be viewed on the Washington County Appraisal District Interactive Map
2. The Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) is available from FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center.
Option A: Enter a complete address for the location, and click “Search”. The flood map number and date for that location is displayed; and you may view and/or download the flood map. To print a section of the map you are viewing click “Make a FIRMette”. Next align the three shaded boxes over the area you want to print, the scale and north arrow, and the title block. Then create your FIRMette as a PDF or image file that you can save and print.
Option B: If the address is unknown, or you want to see a list of all flood maps for a given jurisdiction. Click on “Search All Products”. Then, under “Jurisdiction” select a State (TEXAS), then a County (WASHINGTON COUNTY), and then a Community (WASHINGTON COUNTY*). Next click on “Search”, then click on “Effective Products”, then click on “FIRM Panels” which will bring up a list of maps. From here maps may be viewed and/or downloaded. The top map is the index; on it, choose the area of the county you want to look at and note its map number (Product ID). Then go back to the maps list and click “View” on the map number (Product ID) you want to look at. To print a section of the map you are viewing click “Make a FIRMette”. Next align the three shaded boxes over the area you want to print, the scale and north arrow, and the title block. Then create your FIRMette as a PDF or image file that you can save and print.
3. The FEMA flood hazard file is available in Google Earth.
You must first have Google Earth installed on your computer before downloading and viewing the FEMA flood hazard file. Click on this “Stay Dry” link for information and instructions.
Official Floodplain Determinations and/or Floodplain Development Permit Applications are $25. You will need the Legal Description of your property from your Deed to complete a permit application. This information is available from the Washington County Clerk and the Washington County Appraisal District.
Please see Floodplain Determination and Permitting Information and Floodplain Determination and Permitting Procedures for additional information. For a listing of some floodplain professionals working in our area see our Floodplain Services Directory. The permit application, fee, plans, and specifications of the development must be submitted to this office for review and approval before construction begins.
Additional permits may be required to comply with state, and federal regulations for development within areas designated as wetlands. For information on wetlands determination and regulation see the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. For information on flood insurance see the National Flood Insurance Program or contact an insurance agent.
For additional information, to obtain a floodplain determination, floodplain development permit application, or to file a complaint, contact Mark Marzahn by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 979-277-6290.
Prescribed Burn Permitting
This office administers prescribed burn permitting throughout the unincorporated areas of Washington County.
Prescribed Burn Permits are required only when a Burn Ban is in effect.
Prescribed burns that occur when there is not a burn ban do not require a prescribed burn permit.
Prescribed Burn Permit Applications are $25. You will need the Legal Description of your property from your Deed to complete a permit application. This information is available from the Washington County Clerk and the Washington County Appraisal District.
Please see Prescribed Burn Permitting Information and Prescribed Burn Permitting Procedures for additional information. For a listing of some prescribed burn professionals working in our area see our Prescribed Burn Services Directory. The permit application, fee, and burn plan must be submitted to this office for review and authorization before the burn is conducted.
For additional information, to obtain a permit application, or to file a complaint, contact Mark Marzahn by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at 979-277-6290.
Floodplain and OSSF (Septic System) Review for Land Division
This office reviews proposals for divisions of tracts of land in the unincorporated areas of Washington County for compliance with floodplain and OSSF rules; whether the land division is a platted/re-platted subdivision or a subdivision variance request. In 30 TAC 285 the TCEQ defines a subdivision as a division of a tract of land, regardless of whether it is made by using a metes and bounds description in a deed of conveyance or in a contract for a deed, by using a contract of sale or other executory contract to convey, or by using any other method.
• The purpose of the floodplain review is to identify Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA), and to reduce hazards, loss of life, and property damage within flood-prone areas.
• The purpose of the OSSF review is to evaluate the overall suitability on lots that will use OSSFs for sewage disposal.
The floodplain may be viewed on the Washington County Appraisal District Interactive Map
For proposed platted/re-platted subdivisions, see Subdivision-Development FP-OSSF Guidance for additional information.
For subdivision variance requests, see Subdivision Variance FP-OSSF Guidance for additional information.
The planning materials must be submitted to this office for review and approval before the land is divided.
This Floodplain-OSSF Review is in addition to any requirements Washington County Road & Bridge Department or any other agency may have. There is no additional fee charged by our department for this review; however, fees may be charged by other agencies.
For additional information, or if you need assistance contact Mark Marzahn by e-mail at email@example.com, or by phone at 979-277-6290.
Mark Marzahn, Environmental Health Director
Renee Hamilton, Environmental Health Specialist
Jose Luis Gamboa, Environmental Health Specialist
Environmental Health Department
105 W. Main St., Suite 100
Brenham, Texas 77833
Take Care of Texas is a statewide campaign from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality where you can discover ways to conserve water and energy, keep our air and water clean, and reduce waste.
FOOD ESTABLISHMENTS OPERATING IN WASHINGTON COUNTY
Food establishment permits, inspections, and complaints for all types of retail food establishments (restaurants, event & festival food vendors, and mobile food trucks & trailers) operating in the unincorporated areas of Washington County and within the City of Burton are handled by the Texas Department of State Health Services.
Events such as the Bluebonnet Festival and the Scarecrow Festival in Chappell Hill and the Cotton Gin Festival in Burton are in these areas.
If you need help or would like to request that an application be mailed or faxed to you, contact the Texas Department of State Health Services Foods Licensing Group at 512-834-6626 or go to their website at: http://www.dshs.state.tx.us/
Food Establishments operating within the City of Brenham please contact the Brenham Health Department at 979-337-7216 or go to their website at: http://cityofbrenham.org/police/publiccode.php
- To obtain or verify a physical address number in the unincorporated areas of Washington County, contact Washington County Rural Addressing.
- For information on subdivision platting, driveway access on county roads/right-of-ways, underground utility line regulations, and to purchase an address sign, contact the Washington County Road & Bridge Department.
If you experience problems using our webpage, please notify Mark Marzahn by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at 979-277-6290.