Local Health Officer

Public Safety Director Geoffrey Low serves as the Town of Orono's local Health Officer. If you have town health related questions, you can email Chief Low or call 207-866-4000.  

Public health complaints can be directed to the Code Enforcement Officer or, outside of regular business hours, on duty public safety responders by calling 866-4000.

Role of the Local Health Officer

The local health officer assists in the reporting, prevention, and suppression of diseases and conditions dangerous to health. In Orono, the local health officer works with the Town’s Code Enforcement Officer, Life Safety Inspector, and public safety staff to evaluate, respond, and report on local public health concerns.

Reporting Communicable Diseases

The local health officer shall report promptly to the Commissioner of State of Maine Health and Human Services, or the commissioner's designee, facts that relate to the communicable diseases occurring within the limits of the health officer's jurisdiction, and shall report to the commissioner, or the commissioner's designee, every case of communicable disease as the rules of the department require.  Those diseases that the rules of the department may require to be reported are known as notifiable diseases.

Receiving, Evaluating, and Inspecting Public Health Threat Complaints

The local health officer receives and evaluates complaints made by any of the residents concerning nuisances posing a potential public health threat within the municipal boundaries of Orono.  With the consent of the owner, agent, or occupant, the local health officer may enter upon or within any place or premises where nuisances or conditions posing a public health threat are known or believed to exist, and personally, or by appointed agents, inspect the space.  If entry is refused, the local health officer is authorized to apply for an inspection warrant from the District Court, pursuant to 4 MRSA § 179 prior to conducting the inspection.

Suppressing and Removing Public Health Threats

When the local health officer has reasonable cause to suspect the presence of a communicable disease, the local health officer shall consult with the commissioner, or a designee.  The local health officer shall then order the suppression and removal of nuisances and conditions posing a public health threat found to exist within the limits of the health officer's jurisdiction.  For purposes of this section, "public health threat" means any condition or behavior that can reasonably be expected to place others at significant risk of exposure to infection with a communicable disease.