Work has been completed on the installation of our Sewer System. (effective Summer 2015)

Listed below is the information regarding contact information, rules/regulations.


  1. JEFF 319-390-4658


  3. ECInc office number 319-723-4440

JEFF WEILAND, ECInc e-mail ecinc05@hotmail.com / for non-emergency communication

Mark Schneider, Community Development Dir.

East Central Intergovernmental Assoc. (ECIA)

7600 Commerce Park

Dubuque, Iowa 52001


Leisure Lake Sewer Project

Frequently asked Questions


  1. 1.       What is EIRUSS?

The Eastern Iowa Regional Utility Service Systems, commonly referred to as EIRUSS, is a 5 county public organization created under Chapter 28E of the Iowa Code which permits local governments in Iowa to provide joint services such as utilities. The counties of Cedar, Clinton, Delaware, Jackson, and Jones created EIRUSS in 2005. Each county appoints a County Supervisor to serve on the Board of Directors that governs EIRUSS.

  1. 2.       Why was EIRUSS created?

EIRUSS was created because very small cities and unincorporated areas in counties lacked sewer systems and were in violation of Iowa Department of Natural Resources rules concerning discharge from failing septic systems. These areas find it difficult to finance and manage new sewer systems. EIRUSS currently operates sewer systems in Center Junction and Fairview, both in Jones County, and the water system in Andover, which is in Clinton County.

  1. 3.        How is EIRUSS funded?

EIRUSS is funded as part of the construction costs, a grant from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, and user fees that fund the operation and maintenance of the systems. EIRUSS staffing is provided by the East Central Intergovernmental Association (ECIA) located in Dubuque, Iowa.

  1. 4.       Why is EIRUSS, in cooperation with Jackson County, doing this project?

There are many failing septic systems in Leisure Lake. Exposure to improperly treated sewage can result in illness caused by bacteria and/or viruses. The sewage may also reach groundwater and pollute drinking wells. These conditions violate the rules of the Iowa Department of natural Resources (IDNR). EIRUSS, in cooperation with Jackson County, is constructing the sewer system to make sure Leisure Lake has healthy living conditions and to comply with the IDNR rules.

Connection to the System

  1. 1.       Must I connect to the sewer system?

Yes. County regulations require that any property with a building(s) that is within 200 feet of the sewer line must connect to the system. A building is defined as follows:


“Building” shall mean all houses, building, commercial buildings, recreational facilities, or properties used for human occupancy, employment, recreation, or other similar purposes that are located on or occupying a lot. Building shall include structures commonly described as houses, manufactured homes, mobile homes, travel trailers, and campers. Any structure having ANY of the following characteristics may be considered a “building” under this ordinance.

  1. A structure used for human occupancy, employment, or recreation

  1. A structure showing no evidence of having been removed from the lot in the previous 90 day period

  1. A structure without a current license plate attached to the structure

  1. A structure without a hitch to allow for movement

  1. A structure without tires, with flat tires, or one that is sunk into the ground

  1. A structure that has amenities attached to it or located nearby, including but not limited to decks, antennas or satellite dishes

  1. A structure with tall grass and vegetation, such as bushes, growing around or located near the structure

  1. A structure showing evidence of permanent foundation or skirting

  1. A structure on a property that is being used as a permanent address by the owner or resident

  1. A structure that has electric service, water supply, and/or receives US post office mail delivery

  1. 2.       Is there a cost to connect to the system?

There is no “Connection fee” during the construction period. The service line will be brought to a point near building where the service line will be connected to a “grinder pump”. The pump will be used to pump the sewage from the building. However, the property owner will be responsible for the costs from that point on. Any Internal plumbing is the responsibility of the property owner. The property owner will be responsible for providing electricity and water on the site so the system can operate. The monthly electric bill is also the property owners’ responsibility.


 IF you need to make changes to your electrical service you may contact an electrician of your choice. You will need a 220 volt, single phase connection. An electrician is under contract to work on this project. He can assist you with electrical work on your house; however, you will be responsible for cost. All work requires a permit and inspection by a state inspector. If you have any questions please contact EIRUSS. (Contact information will provide at the end of this document.)


Also, existing septic tanks, according to the State and County regulations, must be pumped, collapsed, and filled with sand or soil. These costs are the responsibility of the property owner. It is possible that septic tanks may be disabled by the contractor during the construction process, on a case by case basis. EIRUSS will work with the contractor and home owner to facilitate this process. Otherwise, the property owner can contract to have them pumped and filled. This has to be done by a licensed contractor. EIRUSS will maintain a list of licensed contractors. You may contact EIRUSS for that information via phone number listed and website shown at the end of this document.


  1. 3.       What if a property has more than one living unit on it? Must each be connected?

If the building or property is discharging sewage or “gray water” it must be connected to the system and will receive a monthly bill for that building. Gray water includes bath water and water from such things as dishes, and/or laundry. It does not include water that is used for gardening or washing cars.

  1. 4.       Must auxiliary units connect to the sewer system? Example: 1) Several large storage sheds that have bathrooms, 2) mobile home with travel trailer for guests.

If the unit has a bathroom (or any plumbing fixture that discharges water) or is used for human habitation is must connect to the system and pay a monthly bill.

  1. 5.       Must I connect to the system if I don’t have water or a septic system? Examples: 1) A person living in a travel trailer year round with no water or sewer hook ups 2) People living in cabin with no water or sewer hook ups.

Yes, as noted in Question #1, on the previous page, “County regulations require that any property with a building(s) that are within 200 feet of the sewer line must connect to the system.” A building that includes, “…all houses, buildings, commercial buildings, recreational facilities, or properties used for human occupancy, employment, recreation, or other similar purposes.”

  1. 6.       Must a building be connected to the sewer system that appears not to be habitable? Examples: Fold down camper on cement blocks with wheels removed. Campers or mobile homes being used as storage. Residents with multiple travel trailers, on several lots, that have not moved in over a year.

If the unit is used for human habitation, or the intended design use is for human habitation, it must be connected to the sewer system. If it is not used/or intended for human habitation it must conform to all Jackson County zoning and nuisance regulations. The County, not EIRUSS, is responsible for those regulations.

  1. 7.       What happens if a property owner refuses to connect to the sewer system?

As mentioned in Question #1 on the previous page, a building used for human habitation must connect to the system. According to Iowa Code administrative authority for the system, in this case Jackson County will enforce this regulation. Iowa Code allows for a fine of $750.00 for the first offense, and $1,000.00 for the second offense, with each day of non-compliance counting as a new offense.



It is an advantage to connect to the system during this construction period because there is no connection fee. However, there will be a connection fee after construction is completed.


  1. 1.       What type of sewer system is being constructed?

The system is a low pressure collection system with a lift station and controlled discharge lagoon. Each property will have a “grinder pump” located outside the building being served. When sewage leaves the building it will go into the “grinder pump” which will process the sewage and then force it under pressure to a lift station located on the east side of 113th Avenue. The lift station will then pump the sewage into the lagoon. The lagoon will treat the sewage and clean (treated) water will be discharged twice a year into a nearby creek.

  1. 2.       What is the construction schedule?

There are four parts to the system: 1) The lagoon 2) the Lift stations 3) the collection system and 4) the service lines to the buildings. Work on the lagoon and lift station will have begun by mid-October, 2012. However, activities will likely stop during the winter. Work on the collection system will begin by April, 2013, as weather permits. Work on the service lines to the houses will likely begin by June, 2013. All these times are estimates and subject to change due to weather.

  1. 3.       How is the project being funded?

The total project cost is $4.4 million dollars. It is being funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture ($1.2 million Grant, and a $2.7 million loan) and the State of Iowa through a Watershed Improvement Review Board Grant ($500,000). The loan will be paid back with user fees.

  1. Who is the contractor?
    The contractor is Tschiggfrie Construction from Dubuque, Iowa. The total construction contract is $3,724,117.00

  1. 5.       How will I know that construction is nearing my house and that I will be connected?

The contractor will contact you as construction approaches your house.

  1. 6.       What if I want to have service to the lot with plants to construct a house later?

You have three options:

  1. EIRUSS can install the service line and pump station. There will be a monthly user fee starting at the time of installation of the service and pump station. You must know the exact location where your sanitary line will exit in the (future) building. At the time of the building construction EIRUSS will provide and install the grinder pump. You will be responsible for the connection of the sewer from the building to pump station.

  1. The second option is for the property owner to pay, at the time of the collection system construction, for a “stub” into the lot. A stub is a line off the main with a cap on it. There is no grinder or grinder pump. There is no monthly fee starting at the time of construction. However, when you build on that lot you will pay for the service line, grinder station, and grinder pump as well as a monthly user fee.

  1. The third option is to not do anything at this time. When you build on the lot an application with permit fee must be made to EIRUSS, and a service line, pump station, and grinder pump must be installed entirely at your cost and a monthly service fee to begin at the time of installation.




  1. What is the monthly user fee?

The exact fee can’t be determined until construction is complete and all costs have been incurred. It will also depend on the total number of users that connect to the system. At the time of the building the ESTIMATED monthly fee is approximately $50.00.

  1. Must I pay a monthly bill even if I am only there on a seasonal basis?

Yes. The sewer system is being financed with grants and loans from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). EIRUSS must make monthly payments to the USDA. In addition, the operating expenses are continues not seasonal. The system must be continually maintained so that it is available for your use in the summer time.

  1. Who is responsible for maintaining the grinder pump?

EIRUSS will be responsible for the routine maintenance and replacement of the grinder pump. However, it is important that only TOILET PAPER be flushed into the system. Paper towels, diapers, feminine products, and other items MUST NOT be flushed into the system. If maintenance is determined to be due to such abuse, the property owner will be responsible for maintenance and repair costs, including but not limited to labor, sewer cleaning, grinder pump replacement, etc.



What if I have questions?

You may contact Larry Nagle at 563-556-4166 or send an email to ecia@ecia.org. Information is also posed on the EIRUSS website at www.eiruss.org.