Baytown Township

Washington County, Minnesota

Well Advisory

On May 6, 1988, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) issued a "Well Advisory" now known as a "Special Well Construction Area," (SWCA) for parts of Baytown Township, West Lakeland Township, and the city of Bayport in response to the discovery of volatile organic chemical (VOC) contaminants in several private wells in the area. The contaminants initially detected included trichloroethylene, carbon tetrachloride, tetrachloroethylene, and cis-1,2, dichloroethylene. The advisory placed special restrictions on the construction of new wells within the well advisory boundary, and required that well owners conduct additional water testing prior to completing and placing a well into service. The additional construction and water testing requirements were established to assure that persons are not exposed to levels of contamination that exceed health exposure guidelines.

Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) staff continue to work with Baytown Township staff in tracking well water sampling and granular activated carbon (GAC) filter system maintenance in home that are covered by township ordinances.  This ordinance applies if you live in the township within the Special Well Construction area (see map below) and your property was platted or subdivided after April 9,2002.   All wells with carbon filter systems that are covered by this ordinance are required to have a licensed plumber or licensed water conditioning contractor inspect the GAC system and replace the carbon filters every three (3) years and provide proof of this replacement to the Township.   The wells that currently do not have a GAC filter must be test every two years. This procedure ensures that safe drinking water is available to all township residents.   Reminders are sent to well owners who have not had switched out their filters or tested their wells as required (see Ord. No. 52 below).   For more information, residents should contact the Township Clerk.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency:
The cleanup of the Baytown Township Groundwater Contamination Site is being managed by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) through the Superfund program. 

 The MPCA’s Baytown Township Groundwater Contamination Site webpage ( provides information about:
1. location and map of the site
2. description of the contamination and past and present steps taken to remove trichloroethylene (TCE) from the affected aquifers
3. how the MPCA helps eligible property owners have drinking water that conforms to the Minnesota Department of Health’s latest health-based guidance
4. granulated activated carbon filters

 Minnesota Department of Health:
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) works with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) to review private well sample results and issue drinking water advisories, as needed. When new information about Trichloroethylene and other site contaminants are available, MDH will review the toxicological data and re-evaluate the existing MDH health based guidance.  The re-evaluations are conducted to ensure the MDH guidance for TCE protects the health of all people.

MDH’s Baytown Township Groundwater Contamination Site webpage  ( provides information about:
1. Health based guidance for Trichloroethylene (TCE)
2. Activities at the site including well sampling information, plume information
3. Email subscription list for the Baytown Township Groundwater Contamination Site
4. MDH contact information if you have questions or concerns about TCE or the site

 Washington County Water Testing Information:
Information about water testing can be found at the Washington County Water Testing webpage (