FAQ Answers

What Is Stormwater Runoff Pollution?


Every day, trash, oil, sediment, chemicals, bacteria, and other pollutants collect on our rooftops, roads, parking lots, and driveways. When it rains, the pollutants travel over these surfaces, flow into the storm drain system, and in great volume end up in our creeks, rivers, lakes, and streams. Below are some common sources and concerns for each type of pollutant.
Pollutant Common Sources Reasons for Concern
Sediment
  • Construction sites
  • Bare spots in lawn or garden
  • Wastewater from washing cars and boats on driveways or in parking lots
  • Unprotected and eroding stream banks
  • Loss or destruction of habitat for fish and plants
  • Potential navigation hindrances
Pathogens
  • Animal and pet waste
  • Malfunctioning septic systems
  • Sewer overflows
  • Closure of shellfish beds and beaches
  • Serious risk to human health
Nutrients
  • Animal or pet waste
  • Grass clippings and leaves left on streets and sidewalks
  • Leaves burned in ditches
  • Overused or spilled fertilizers
  • Increased potential for nuisance or toxic algae blooms
  • Lower levels of dissolved oxygen
Toxic Contaminants
  • Car and truck exhaust
  • Gas spills
  • Improperly applied pesticides
  • Metallic debris from brake pads
  • Oil leaks
  • Serious risk to aquatic life
Debris/Litter
  • 6-pack rings
  • Bottles
  • Cans
  • Cigarette butts
  • Fishing line
  • Improperly discarded plastic
  • Paper
  • Plastic bags
  • Styrofoam
  • Wrappers, etc.
  • Expensive to clean up properly
  • Potential risk to human health and aquatic life
  • Unpleasant to see along the side of a road or the bank of a river

Can the Fee be Modified or Reduced?


Property owners that retrofit their property with approved Best Management Practices that improve the quality of stormwater discharged from their property can receive up to a 100% reduction in the impact fee. Additionally, under the rebates program, the County will provide a limited amount of rebate funds each year to property owners to retrofit their properties. If there is an error in the way the County calculated the fees, an appeal can be made to the Department of the Environment.