Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination

An illicit discharge is the discharge of pollutants or non-storm water materials into a storm drain system via an illegal pipe connection or other direct tie-in and also via overland flow or direct dumping into a catch basin or storm drain. Municipal storm drains are intended to convey storm water runoff to nearby lakes and streams to prevent flooding, but they are not intended to carry flow from sources such as sanitary sewers, septic systems, car washes, laundromats, or other similar sources.

Illicit discharges are a problem because storm water generally flows to a river, pond or stream without any additional treatment, unlike wastewater or sewage which flows to a wastewater treatment plant. Dumping anything other than storm water into a storm drain is illegal and considered an illicit discharge.

Sources of Illicit Discharge
  • Construction run-off
  • Sanitary wastewater (sewage)
  • Septic tank waste or overflows
  • Car wash, laundry, and industrial waste waters
  • Improper disposal of auto and household toxins, such as motor oil, antifreeze, and pesticides
  • Spills on roadways and other accidents

Illicit Discharge Reporting
If you wish to report an illicit discharge or have other concerns related to storm water, complete our Storm Water Illicit Discharge Report Form (PDF)
Or use our hot line: 615-257-2228. Callers will remain anonymous.