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Environmental Health

Our goal with Health First Indiana is to ensure that every Hoosier has access to the core public health services that allow them to achieve their optimal health and well-being by prioritizing the vector control program, ensuring sanitary operations of tattoo parlors and facilities where eyelash extensions are performed, and approving an ordinance that incorporates risk-based assessments for food establishments.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Environmental Health includes permitting and inspecting On-Site Sewage Systems (OSS) and food facilities, whether old or new, temporary or permanent. The environmentalists investigate complaints of failures and issues that contribute to public health problems, health hazards, and disease. Our department works closely with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM), the Indiana Food Protection Division, and the Indiana Department of Health (IDOH).


If you are a victim of an animal bite, you should seek medical attention. If you are the owner of the animal that has bitten someone, file an animal bite report immediately. Any adult may report an animal bite. Physicians are required by state law to report animal bites to their local health Department. Information from the report will be evaluated for the risk of rabies.

Animal Bite Report Form

Leah Root, Environmental Health Specialist

(812) 663-8301 Ext. 7715  |  Email:

Alicia Nobbe, Environmental Health Specialist - Food Protection

(812) 663-8301 Ext. 7714  |  Email:

The Decatur County Environmentalists inspect all residential On-Site Sewage Systems (OSS) sites in the county before construction and during installation. For commercial On-Site Septic Systems, you must have an approval letter from the Indiana Department of Health.

Septic Permits - $600.00

Septic Repair, Replacement, or Expansion - $300.00

Make a Payment Online.  Payable by cash, money order, or credit card. *These fees are subject to modification by appropriate action of the Decatur County Department of Health.*

For more information, click on the links below:

Existing or New On-Site Sewage System Application

Water Sample Form

The Decatur County Health Department Food Protection Specialist inspects all county food service establishments, including restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations, caterers, jails, mobile food trucks, and many more. Food Protection also inspects for remodels and new construction of food establishments. In addition, Food Protection will investigate consumer complaints of food products and food poisoning. All food establishments get inspected during other events as well, such as the county fair or Fall Festival. All current and previous inspections are available for viewing in the office at any time during regular business hours. If you have a concern or complaint about any food service establishment, call (812) 663-8301, Ext. 7714.

ServSafe is a food and beverage safety training and certificate program accredited by the National Restaurant Association and the Conference for Food Protection. ServSafe certification is required for at least one certified food manager to be on staff.

Food Service Facility Permit by # of employees: 1-9 employees, $200.00; 10-20 employees, $300.00; 21+ employees, $600.00

Retail Food Store Permit by Square Footage: 1-1,000 sq ft, $200.00; 1,001-8,000 sq ft, $300.00; over 8,000 sq ft,  $600.00

1/2 year fee applied for Food Service Facility/Retail Food Store per above guidelines.

Temporary/Booth Fee - Food: $50.00

Annual Food Permit Late Fees PER EVERY 45 DAYS are as follows: 1-9 employees, $100.00; 10-20 employees, $250.00; 21+ employees, $300.00

Make a Payment Online.  Payable by cash, money order, or credit card. *These fees are subject to modification by appropriate action of the Decatur County Department of Health.*

Annual Food Permit Application

Temporary Food Permit Application

The DCHD Environmentalists handle a variety of environmental complaints. Any complaints involving illegal dumping, leaking septic systems, housing concerns, or food protection concerns can be directed to them. Complaints can be made by calling (812) 663-8301. You can also submit your complaint by email at

Environmental Complaint Form

Food Establishment Complaint Form

Other Links:


The Indiana State Department of Health Department has provided funding to allow the Local Health Departments to purchase Mosquito Dunks, a larvicidal product. The active ingredient is Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis, a bacterial spore that is safe for animals and fish. It kills mosquitoes by scratching up their stomach and intestinal linings, making them unable to ingest food. Mosquito Dunks are free to the public as long as our supply lasts. You can call the Health Department at (812) 663-8301, Ext. 7715, and let us known how large your area of standing water is. A calculation can be made as to how many Dunks you will need.


Ticks are small, insect-like animals that live in woodland, mixed shrub, and grassland environments. They have two body segments and eight legs while insects have three body segments and six legs. The life cycle of ticks involve the following three stages: Egg, Larva, Nymph, and Adult.

About fifteen different species of ticks occur in Indiana. Only four species are normally encountered by people and their pets. These are the American dog tick, Dermacentor variabilis; the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum; the blacklegged tick (also known as the deer tick or the Lyme disease tick), lxodes scapularis, and the brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus. In Indiana, ticks are responsible for transmitting several diseases. The three most common are Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Lyme disease, and ehrlichiosis. For more information on ticks, diseases, and prevention, see the CDC website.