Contractor Rules and Regulations

Specifications and Requirements
Sewer System Work

Table of Contents

Fee Schedule3
Building Sewer Connections4
Sewer Service Installation5
Materials & Workmanship6
Rock Excavation6
Use of Public Sewers7
Open Excavation7
M.G.L. c.83, S10, As Amended by St. 1987, c.174, S78
Flowable Fill8
Road Opening Fee9
Drain Layers Annual Fee9

Fairhaven Sewer Tie-In and Development Fee Schedule

Tie-in Fee:

A tie-in fee shall be paid for each building that is connected to the Town Sewer System.

  • Residential: $250.00
  • Reconnection or replacement of an existing service: $125.00
  • Commercial, Industrial Business or Mercantile: $5,000.00 + .20 per square foot
  • Hotels, Motels, Boarding Houses, Nursing Homes and Institutional Buildings: $5,000.00 + $300.00 per room
Development Fee:
  • Existing Housing: $3,000.00 or Betterment Development Fee
    (Any existing housing that did not pay a betterment fee will be charged $3,000.00 per unit, or the Betterment Development Fee; whichever is higher.)
  • New Construction: $6,000.00 per unit or the betterment fee per unit, whichever is higher.
Sewer Main Extension Fee:

New Sewer main extensions which are tapped off or otherwise extended from an existing sewer main, that is not installed under a betterment project and are intended to serve multiple properties or have the potential to serve multiple properties, will be assessed a Sewer Main Extension Fee, which shall be paid prior to construction.

  • 1-4 Properties: $5,000.00 per tap or extension
  • 5 or more Properties: $10,000.00 per tap or extension
Betterment Development Fee:

Any lot having frontage on a betterment project that had not been assessed a betterment will pay equal to the betterment charge for that project.

Betterment Connection Fee:

In any betterment sewer area a 6" diameter or larger stub, or a low pressure or force main, which serves as an actual or potential trunk main to one or more buildable properties or sewer units will be assessed a special connection fee in accordance with M.G.L. c.83 §20 equivalent to the betterment charge for that area based upon the betterments that were previously established by the Board as if included in the original assessment of betterments. For purposes hereunder, a sewer unit shall be defined to be an individual sewer use to either a residential, commercial or industrial use.

All construction costs are the responsibility of the applicant.
If no Town water is available a meter must be installed on the well.

Effective 8-7-07

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Building Sewer Connections


No person shall uncover, make any connections with or opening into, use, alter or disturb any public sewer or appurtenance thereof without first obtaining a written permit from the Fairhaven Board of Public Works. The owner shall have the right to contract with a private approved licensed drain layer in the Town of Fairhaven in order to perform this work. All work shall be conducted in strict accordance with the Board of Public Works rules and regulations.

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All permits must be obtained 72 hours prior to any excavation. Permits are to be obtained Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:30am and 3:30pm at the Board of Public Works Office, 5 Arsene Street, Fairhaven. A Dig Safe number is required upon applying for permit. No permit will be issued without a Dig Safe number. The enclosed fees will be in effect and subject to change by the Board of Public Works at their discretion.

All fees shall be made payable upon issuance of permit. Permits will only be issued to drain layers licensed to lay drains in the Town of Fairhaven. Permits shall be subject to revocations when any of the rules and regulations contained herein are not being followed. If the work under the permit is not completed within 90 calendar days renewal of permit will be obtained without payment of additional fee. The renewal will be for an additional 30 calendar days. For any permit held longer than 120 calendar days an additional fee equivalent to the original fee will be charged. No permit shall be transferable without the approval of the Superintendent or the Assistant Superintendent of the Board of Public Works. No permit shall be issued, except in cases of emergency, to dig up or make an excavation in a public way until the applicant files with the Superintendent of Public Works copies of the notices to public utility companies as required by General Laws Chapter 82, Section 40. Excavations in a Public Way will require a deposit of $2,500.00 annually to be held in escrow for one year and may be rolled over upon renewal of your drain layers permit. Permits will be issued to excavate in a public way from April 1 to December 1. A street disturbance permit will only be issued by the Board of Public Works to excavate a public way for the period of December 1 to April 1 on an emergency need basis.

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Sewer Service Installation

The sewer service must be constructed completely by Town approved drain layers licensed to do this work. These drain layers must possess the required minimum public liability and property damage insurance, $1,000,000/$1,000,000 each aggregate. A certificate for the same shall be filed with the Superintendent of Public Works. Violation of the Board of Public Works rules and regulations will result in suspension or revoking of license.

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Materials and Workmanship

Pipe adapters and fittings to be used in work shall be either 6" SDR35 PVC pipe in lengths as required or 6" heavy duty cast iron bell and spigot soil pipe or 6" Ductile Iron approved by the Superintendent. In general, sewer services will not be allowed to have more than two (2) angle points, or a total angular deviation of 180 degrees, unless granted variance by the superintendent. No one-piece 90 degree bends or elbows will be allowed, only sweeps or 45 degree elbows with a two (2) foot length of pipe will be allowed to make 90 degree bends. A cleanout must be installed at the second deflection point and at the property line. Cleanouts shall be not more than 4" below finished grade in grass area, installed with a 5" diameter metal plate affixed to the push on type cover, and flush to final grade with cast-iron frame and cover cemented in place, where cement finish or bituminous concrete is the finished surface.

All pipe and fittings shall be laid to a minimum slope of ¼ inch per foot unless otherwise approved by the Superintendent. Pipe must be laid on well compacted earth or crushed stone. Crushed stone will be used at a minimum of 6” depth as a base for trenches with water or an unstable base or as directed. No wooden blocks, bricks or stones will be allowed under the pipe. The trenches shall be excavated from the end of the existing sewer service to its point of connection to the building plumbing outlet. Pipe and fittings laid in the trench shall not be backfilled until the work is inspected by a representative of the Town. All pipelines must be backfilled by hand and tampered to a height of one (1) foot over the pipe. Backfill operation will take place while inspector is present. Any pipeline or appurtenance that is backfilled prior to inspection or measurement of as-built locations shall be uncovered by the Contractor at his own expense. When working in roadways it may be necessary to backfill with flowable fill. Any pipeline or appurtenance that is backfilled prior to inspection or measurement of as-built locations shall be uncovered by the Contractor at his own expense. A list of streets is attached.

Services in excess of 100 feet in length are subject to review and such other requirements as may be found necessary to assure a functional connection. In new construction and where practicable in existing buildings when the common sewer is sufficiently deep, service shall be laid directly, without deflections, from the house plumbing soil stack to the connection provided at the common sewer. Tunneling will not be allowed unless special permission for same is given. Connections made to the building plumbing system shall be made upstream of any septic tanks or cesspools. Upon connection of the building plumbing system to the common sewers, existing septic tanks and cesspools shall be pumped out and completely filled with suitable material, to the satisfaction of the Board of Health of the Town, or their representative. Drain layers shall be responsible for all defects in materials and workmanship for a period of one year following completion of the sewer service installation or repair.

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Rock Excavation

When ledge is encountered in the excavations, a permit must be obtained from the Fire Chief for the use of explosives. All blasting shall be done in accordance with the requirements as imposed by the Fire Chief. All blasting must be done by a person licensed by the Department of Public Safety for this purpose. All rock excavation must be removed to a depth of no less than 6" below the invert of sewer pipe, and a proper base material of sand or crushed stone to be used.

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Twenty-four (24) hour notice must be given to the Board of Public Works Office (not the Treatment Plant, Superintendent or any of the employees) for requests for inspections on sewer service connections is required. A preconstruction conference shall be held if required by the Superintendent prior to construction. Inspections will be made only during the normal working hour of the Sewer Department. An additional charge will be made for inspections required after normal working hours. All pipe joint connections shall be watertight. A test may be needed to prove water tightness. The Superintendent and/or Plumbing Inspector and other duly authorized employees of the Town bearing proper credentials and identification shall be permitted to enter all properties for the purposes of inspection, observation, measurement, sampling, and testing in accordance with the provisions of these rules and regulations. A full-time inspector will be provided for at the expense of the developer, at the current cost per hour, minimum four (4) hours, where deemed necessary by the BPW Superintendent.

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Use of Public Sewers

No persons shall discharge or cause to be discharged any stormwater, surface water, groundwater, roof run-off, sub-surface drainage, uncontaminated cooling water, or unpolluted industrial process waters to any sanitary sewer. No deep seal traps will be allowed. No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged any of the following described waters or wastes to any public sewer. Any gasoline, benzene, naphtha, lube oil, fuel oil, or other flammable, or explosive liquid, solid or gas; any waters or wastes containing toxic or poisonous solids, liquids, or gases in sufficient quantity, either singly or by interaction with any sewage treatment process, constitute a hazard to humans or animals, create a public nuisance, or create any hazard in the receiving waters of the sewage treatment plant;  any wastes or waters containing iron, chromium, copper, zinc, and similar objectionable or toxic substances; or wastes exerting an excessive chlorine requirement, to such degree that any such material received in the composite sewage at the sewage treatment works exceeds the limits established by the Superintendent for such materials; and any other materials in violation of the sewer ordinance.

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Any work performed without a permit shall be assessed a fee two times the fees for permits. Any person violating any of the provisions of these technical rules and regulations shall become liable to the Town for any expense, loss, or damage occasioned the Town by reason of such violation. According to *Massachusetts General Law c83, S10, as amended by St.1987, c.174, S7. Drain layers violating these rules will have their licenses suspended or revoked.

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All public property, curbs, sidewalks, grass areas, must be repaired to their original condition by the drain layer after sewer service has been connected. No debris of any kind will be allowed on public property. Any excavation on public property.

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Open Excavation

All open excavations shall be adequately safeguarded by providing temporary barricades, caution signs, lights and other means to prevent accidents to persons and damage to property. The length of open trench will be controlled by the particular surrounding conditions, but shall always be confined to the limits decided upon by the Sewer Superintendent. If the excavation becomes a hazard, or if excessively restricts traffic at any point, the Sewer Superintendent may require special construction procedures; such as, limiting the length of open trench, prohibiting stacking excavated material in the street or requiring that the trench shall not remain open overnight. All trenches, excavated material, equipment or other obstacles which could be dangerous to the public, shall be well lighted at night.

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*M.G.L. C.83, S10, As Amended By ST. 1987, C.174, S7.

A city, town or sewer district may, from time to time, prescribe rules and regulations regarding the use of common sewers to prevent the entrance or discharge therein of any substance which may tend to interfere with the flow or sewage or the proper operation of the sewage system and the treatment and disposal works, for the connection of estates and building with sewers, for the construction, alteration, and use of all connections entering into such sewers, and for the inspection of all materials used therein; and may prescribe civil penalties, not exceeding five thousand dollars for each day of any such rule or regulation. Such rules and regulations shall be published once in a newspaper published in the city or town, if there by any, and if not, then in a newspaper published in the county, and shall include a notice that said rules and regulations shall be available for inspection by the public, and shall not take effect until such publication is made.

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Flowable Fill

The Board of Public Works has voted effective November 6, 2000 to have flowable fill used as backfill for all cross trenches on the following streets:

  • Adams Street - from the Bike Path to Huttleston Avenue
  • Alden Road
  • Alden Road Extension
  • Bridge Street - from Huttleston Avenue to New Boston Road
  • David Drown Boulevard
  • Farmfield Street
  • Fort Street
  • Green Street
  • Harding Road
  • Howland Road
  • Main Street
  • Middle Street
  • New Boston Road
  • Pleasant Street
  • Sconticut Neck Road
  • Sycamore Street
  • Washington Street

Also included are any streets that have been reconstructed or resurfaced within the last five (5) years from the date of the road opening request. On these streets, the entire street width, from curb to curb, and 10' outside the limits of the work shall be cold-planed, and resurfaced with 1 ½" of Class I, Type I-1 Bituminous Concrete Pavement.

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Road Opening Fee

All contractors who apply to the Board of Public Works to connect to any Town utility or request to open any roadway layout, shall make a deposit of Two Thousand, Five Hundred Dollars, ($2,500.00) before any permits are issued.

The deposit of $2,500.00 will be made by the contractor and will be renewed upon the date of the drain layers permit each year. The funds will be held for one (1) year and may be rolled over upon the renewal of your drain layers permit.

If any of the $2,500.00 has to be expended by the Town of Fairhaven Board of Public Works for an emergency repair or for the permanent road patch, the contractor shall replenish the amount of money expended by the Town. The contractor will not be allowed to do any work in the Town of Fairhaven until this money is replenished.

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Drain Layers Permit - Annual Fee

All drain layers requesting drain layers permits will pay an annual fee of $125.00.

All drain layers presently having permits will be required to pay the $125.00 fee when requesting renewal of permit.

Air Test

Town of:~
Date of Test:~
Time of Test:~
Length of Main:~
Size & Type of Pipe:~
Number of Manholes:~
Air Pressure:~
Duration of Test:~
Test Conducted By:~
Test Witnessed By:~

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Leakage Tests for Gravity Sewers: Low-pressure air tests shall be used to test the gravity sewer lines. Leakage shall be measured in terms of time for the pressure to drop from 3.5 pounds per square inch gauge to 3.25 pounds per square inch gauge. Allowable time for different size and lengths of pipe shall be in accordance with current accepted standards.

Manholes shall be tested for leakage by vacuum tests as described below:

Vacuum Test - A vacuum of 10 inches of mercury shall be drawn and the vacuum pump shut off. With the valves closed, the time shall be measured for the vacuum to drop 9 inches. The manhole shall pass the test if the time is greater than those listed below:

Depth of MH
4 & 5 Foot Diam.
Min. Allowable
Time (Sec.)

If the manhole fails the initial test, necessary repairs shall be made with a non-shrink grout while vacuum is still being drawn. Restesting shall proceed until a satisfactory test is obtained.  

Unless otherwise permitted by the Engineer, pipeline strength shall be tested a pressure of 150 psi for force mains.

The pressure for strength test shall be maintained for at least ten minutes by pumping additional water into the pipeline.

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