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Review of Plans and Specifications

Engineering plans and specifications for proposed construction, installation, or modification of wastewater disposal systems, treatment works, sewerage systems or common sewers must be submitted to DEQ for review and approval prior to construction, except where exempted. This is required by Oregon Revised Statute 468B.055. OAR 340-052-0015 details plan submittal requirements. OAR 340-052 Appendix A and Appendix B contain requirements for gravity sewerage systems and sewerage pumping stations, respectively. 

DEQ may exempt from submittal of plans minor modifications to existing facilities where the change will not significantly affect the operation of the treatment or disposal system. A complete description of proposed minor modifications must be submitted for DEQ’s consideration. Exemptions will be approved in writing on a case-by-case basis. Please note that DEQ approval is not required for in kind replacement of equipment or accessories such as thermostats, switches, elements, motors, or fittings. In-kind replacement does not involve the replacement of main portions of the electrical, structural, plumbing, or mechanical system. Please contact DEQ if you have any questions about your proposed project. 


The Oregon Environmental Quality Commission authorized delegation to DEQ Director Leah Feldon for the 2023 Water Quality fee rulemaking. Director Feldon adopted rule amendments in September 2023 to increase water quality fees. New fees will be on invoices starting in November 2023, to cover costs associated with implementing the permitting program and delivering services to regulated entities. The fee increase was a total of 3% authorized by statute (ORS 468B.051) effective Nov. 1, 2023. Please note that the fees from the following permits were excluded from the 3% increase as noted below: 

  1. UIC Fees authorized by Rule 
  2. 700PM fees authorized by Oregon Revised Statute 468B.118 

To learn about future fee increases, please sign-up for text or email updates about the Water Quality program online and select Water Quality Fees.

Submitting wastewater reports and plans for approval

Please send the following to the DEQ engineer who is assigned to the area of your project (see the list of engineers below)
  • Plans, specifications and reports. Note: electronic versions are acceptable. 
  • Land Use Compatibility Statement, or LUCS, signed by the local land use authority. Note: A LUCS which is part of a submittal for approval of plans and specifications should check the box for "Wastewater/Sewer Construction Plan/Specifications" in subsection 1D, and check "Other" in subsection 1E. Electronic versions are acceptable.  
  • Payment of DEQ Technical Activities Fee in OAR 340-045 Table 70 F (Effective Nov. 1, 2023). DEQ can invoice the system owner if that is the owner’s preference.
  • Plans for a common sewer expansion must be accompanied by a statement from the treatment works owner that they agree to provide sewer service and have sewerage system and treatment capacity to do so.

​​​​​​DEQ wastewater engineers use the following guidelines to evaluate plans. DEQ advises that the appropriate DEQ wastewater engineer be consulted prior to plan submittal if a deviation is desired to avoid additional redesign expenses. 

Note: This updated list (as of 12/8/2021) contains a revised guideline (#3), which includes discussion of grinder pump systems.

  1. Alternative Guidelines for Estimating Leakage from Smaller (less than 2 acres) Existing Sewage Lagoons

  2. Design Notes for Non-Discharging Sewage Lagoons

  3. Alternative Wastewater Collection Systems Guideline, updated December 2021

  4. Guidelines for Estimating Leakage from Existing Sewage Lagoons

  5. Guidelines for Making Sewage Pump Station Plan-Review Submittals

  6. Guidelines for Making Wet-Weather and Peak Flow Projections for Sewage Treatment in Western Oregon

  7. Guidelines for Writing Wastewater Engineering Design and Pre-Design Reports

  8. Preparation of Operations and Maintenance Manuals for Domestic Wastewater Treatment Facilities

  9. Review of Plans and Specifications. Sewer Pipelines 
    Division 52 Appendix A: Sewer Pipelines

  10. Review of Plans and Specifications. Sewer Pipelines 
    Division 52 Appendix B: Raw Sewage Lift Stations

  11. Sanitary Sewer Design Notes

  12. Pump Station Design Standards 

DEQ wastewater plan review contacts
Eastern Region
Baker, Crook, Deschutes, Gilliam, Grant, Harney, Hood River, Jefferson, Klamath, Lake, Malheur, Morrow, Sherman, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa, Wasco, and Wheeler counties

Blair Edwards, Environmental Engineer 3
700 NE Multnomah Ave. Suite 600,
Portland, OR 97232
503-229-5185 Office
503-875-5187 Mobile

Northwest Region

Clackamas, Clatsop, Columbia, Multnomah, Tillamook, and Washington counties

Michael Pinney, PE
700 NE Multnomah Ave. Suite 600
Portland OR 97232

Western Region
Benton, Coos, Curry, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Polk and Yamhill counties
Julie Ulibarri
165 E. 7th Ave., Suite 100
Eugene, OR 97401