The Environmental Health Department works to protect the citizens of and visitors to Santa Cruz County from hazards that can develop in those places that are used by everyone. Twice a year the department inspects such public places as:
Manufactured home trailer parks
Mobile food vendors
Public swimming pools
Recreational trailer parks
Retail food stores
School cafeterias and facilities
Temporary event food vendors
Transient dwellings like motels
Inspections determine how closely a business is following the particular code that regulates them. When violations of the code are found, the inspectors work with the business owners to correct them as quickly as possible.
Drinking Water Protection
Another important aspect of our jobs is to protect the county’s drinking water from contamination. Therefore, we review the plans for and conduct inspections of all new septic systems being installed in the county. We also inspect any major repairs to septic systems. We approve the plans that are sent to the state for developing drinking water wells. A failing septic system or other surfacing sewage is a major public health threat. Our department responds quickly to such violations to ensure correction.
Although the bottom line is enforcement of the codes, all of us in the department subscribe to a philosophy of education. We believe an educated public will develop habits that help keep the whole community healthy. We strive to educate home owners and business owners of the correct ways to implement the codes governing them. We hold Food Handler Training in English and in Spanish at least once a month.
The department’s registered sanitarians have been schooled in environmental concerns, have passed a stringent Arizona state examination, and must earn continuing education credits every year to maintain their registration. Our sanitarian aides also attend seminars, conferences, and have worked numerous years in the environmental health field making them valuable resources in our office and in the field.