The Health Department is closed June 27 for a staff retreat.
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  • TappsWise—Healthy Lake, Healthy Community

    Good water quality benefits your health and your community.

    We’ve partnered with Cascade Water Alliance to improve water quality in Lake Tapps. We offer webinars and home septic care information for homeowners. Become part of the solution. You can make a few small changes and protect your lake from toxic algae and harmful bacteria. 

    Use organic lawn fertilizer

    Mineral fertilizers release nutrients too quickly for your lawn to absorb. Nutrients not taken up can run off into Lake Tapps and fertilize nuisance plants like milfoil or lead to toxic algae blooms.

    Organic fertilizers get broken down by microorganisms in the soil, releasing nutrients slowly at a rate plants can easily absorb. Organic fertilizers are safer for children and pets that run and play on yards.

    Always choose phosphorus-free lawn fertilizers. Use the N-P-K numbers on the bag to determine the phosphorus content. N-P-K gives you the ratio of nutrients in the fertilizer.

        • N stands for Nitrogen.

        • P is for Phosphorus.

        • K is for potassium (Kalium in Latin).

      Look for fertilizers with a “zero” for phosphorus, e.g. 10-0-2, 8-0-4.

      You find them at well-stocked nurseries and garden centers. Learn more about the benefits of natural yard care and organic fertilizers.

      Inspect your septic system

      In 2020, we began sending septic system inspection reminders to all septic system owners in the Lake Tapps watershed. We offer up to $950 in discounts for inspections, pumping and minor repairs for all septic system owners in the Lake Tapps watershed.

      Schedule your inspection now to take advantage of the savings!

          • View a map of the Lake Tapps watershed.

        We check water quality to make sure you are safe

        In addition to education, we also monitor water quality. We check many areas around the lake for toxic algae and test the water at Allan Yorke and North Lake Tapps County parks for bacteria. We issue advisories when conditions are unsafe. This helps people and pets stay safe.

        TappsWise Logo: "Lake Tapps Wise"; in white on blue background with wavy pattern.

        What you can do to be TappsWise

        Become a steward of your lake—help keep it safe for swimming, playing, fishing and boating. Follow these easy steps to start improving water quality:


            • Practice natural yard care.

            • Maintain your septic system.

            • Scoop your pet’s poop.

          Kids can help, too!


              • Watch a video to find out what a watershed is.


            Contact us at or (253) 649-1820.