Explore County

Environmental Health

We are responsible for permitting and inspecting all on-site wastewater treatment systems installed in Shelby County. We require and conduct percolation tests on all systems.

All new private water wells, heat pump wells, and monitoring wells are permitted and inspected. Prior to drilling, a site assessment is conducted. Another inspection is made upon completion of drilling. Water samples are collected from private wells and tested for coliform & E. coli bacteria and nitrates. There is no charge to the well owner for this service.

We administer the Department of Natural Resources water/well grant each year to Shelby County. This grant assists property owners with cost-share monies to properly plug abandoned wells. 

Our department investigates all environmental-related complaints, which may include: illegal dumping, illegal burning, improper dead animal disposal, burning of solid waste, and illegal discharge of sewage.

Shelby County conducts time of transfer inspections or the sale or transfer of property. We have a small backhoe to uncover the septic tank and distribution box if needed when inspecting the septic system. All wells are identified, sampled, inspected, and old solid waste dumping sites are identified.

Our department inspects municipal swimming pools, motel pools, spas, and tattoo parlors in Shelby Monona, Pottawattamie, and Harrison Counties.

In 2005, Shelby County adopted a radon ordinance that requires all newly constructed homes to include radon resistance features. Our office has radon kits available year-round for a minimal fee and offers handouts and technical advice concerning radon.

Applications & Forms Passport Programs 

Environmental Health's office staff includes:

Luke Wolken - Director

Contact Information

Shelby County Courthouse
612 Court Street
Harlan, Iowa 51537