The Role of Local Government
A local government in Virginia can enact an ordinance allowing it to test, monitor and enforce state regulations on the beneficial land application of biosolids within its boundaries. State law allows the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to collect fees from land appliers, based on the amount of biosolids applied to farms or forestland. These fees are used to reimburse local governments for local oversight and monitoring. Currently there are 73 counties that have been permitted for biosolids land application. Twenty-five counties have enacted state-approved biosolids ordinances and have appointed local monitors.
A copy of 10 Things that Local Governments Can Do to Manage Biosolids (.pdf 76KB) is available for download.
A copy of the Virginia Biosolids Fee Guidance Manual (.pdf 124KB) that explains how localities can be reimbursed for local biosolids oversight and monitoring is available for download. (This manual was prepared by the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and still refers to that agency. However, the Department of Environmental Quality is now responsible for the biosolids land application program, including the monitoring program.)
More information about the 503 Rule and biosolids is available from the EPA at