Ilicit Discharges and Connections
On May 1, 2006, the City of Urbana adopted an Ordinance regulating illicit discharges and connections to the City storm sewer system. Adoption of an illicit discharge ordinance was required to comply with the City's multiple separate storm sewer system (MS4) Permit. The stated objectives of the Ordinance include:
1. To regulate the contribution of pollutants to the MS4 by stormwater discharges by any user.
2. To prohibit illicit connections and discharges to the MS4.
3. To establish legal authority to carry out all inspection, surveillance, monitoring, and enforcement procedures necessary to ensure compliance with this ordinance.
WHAT IS AN ILLICIT DISCHARGE?
- An illicit discharge is the discharge of pollutants or non-storm water materials into a storm sewer system via overland flow, direct dumping, or illicit connections. Illicit connections are pipes or other direct connections that illegally or unknowingly release pollutants or non-storm water materials into a storm sewer system or directly into a body of water.
EXAMPLES OF ILLICIT DISCHARGES:
- Sanitary, laundry,and industrial wastewater
- Roadway accident spills
- Improper disposal of vehicle and toxic wastes including motor oil and pesticides
WHY IS AN ILLICIT DISCHARGE A PROBLEM?
- The Urbana Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System MS4 is designed to convey stormwater runoff to nearby bodies of water. The runoff does not go through any treatment before it empties into a receiving water. Dumping anything other than storm water into a storm sewer allows pollutants to enter lakes and streams causing public health concerns, harm to wildlife, and unpleasant odors or color.
HOW CAN YOU DETECT AN ILLICIT DISCHARGE?
Things to look for:
- Suspicious dumping of liquids or any other item into a storm sewer.
- Makeshift pipes or hoses that lead to a storm sewer or directly to a body of water.
- Unusual or suspicious discharge in a catch basin or waterway.
- Wastewater on the ground surface.
- Leaky septic systems.
- Stains, unusual odors, or structural damage to streets or gutters.
- Dead or distressed fish, plants, or other wildlife.
- Abnormal vegetative growth in nearby lakes and streams.
- Excess sedimentation in water bodies.
HOW TO REPORT AN ILLICIT DISCHARGE OR CONNECTION?
Call the Public Works Department at (217) 384-2342
WHAT DISCHARGES TO THE STORM SEWERS ARE NOT CONSIDERED ILLICIT?
Water discharges including water line flushing, air conditioning condensation, irrigation water, water from crawl space pumps, lawn watering, individual residential car washing, dechlorinated swimming pool discharges, and street wash water.
Discharges or flow from firefighting and other discharges that are necessary to protect public health and safety.
Discharges associated with dye testing.
Any stormwater discharge permitted under an NPDES permit.