Storm Water Regulation
The City of Pewaukee is a Phase 1 NR216 permitted community through the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR). The NR216 legislation ultimately one of the many results of the Clean Water Act which is administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the WDNR.
In 2000 the City was notified by the WDNR that we were one of eight designated communities determined to be significant contributors of pollution from storm water discharges to the Upper Fox River. As a designated community, the City was required to apply for and receive a Wisconsin Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit (WPDES) for storm water discharges from the City’s storm water management system (MS4). A requirement of the City’s permit was to adopt and enforce ordinances intended to reduce or eliminate pollutants from entering or being discharged from the City’s MS4 to waters of the state. An example of such an ordinance is the City’s Construction Site Erosion Control, Post-Construction Storm Water Management and Illicit Discharge Ordinance (Chapter 19 of the Municipal Code). The City’s first permit was issued on November 1, 2004 and has subsequently been renewed every five years (2009 and 2014).
Previously the city’s storm water management program was minimally funded on an annual basis through the general tax levy. The only expenses that were covered at that time were basic maintenance and permit compliance.
Creation of Storm Water Utility
On September 7, 2010, the City created a storm water utility (Ordinance Number 10-09) which is outlined in Chapter 26 of the Municipal Code. The Common Council found that the management of storm water and other surface water discharges within and beyond the City is a matter that affects the health, safety and welfare of the City, its citizens and businesses, and others in the surrounding area. Failure to effectively manage storm water affects surface water runoff, creates erosion of lands, damages businesses and residences, and creates sedimentation and other environmental damage in the City. Additionally, storm water runoff can affect the sanitary sewer utility operations of the City by, among other things, increasing the infiltration and inflow into the sanitary sewer system which can result in higher treatment costs, bypassing sanitary sewer flows and sanitary backups into basements. Establishment of the Utility provided a consistent source of funds to address the City’s storm water management needs.
The Utility funds the unfunded mandates from the NR216 permit as well as addresses the ongoing maintenance needs and capacity deficiencies within the City’s storm water management system.
Completed and Signed MS4 General Permit Annual Report (DNR 3500-195)