Stormwater Pollution Control Prevention
Stormwater Pollution Control Prevention
A Stormwater Pollution Control ordinance was approved by the City council on September 11, 2006. The ordinance regulates the harmful discharge of pollutants into the City stormwater drainage system. It establishes that preventing stormwater pollution is in the public interest and will prevent threats to public health and safety, and the environment. The ordinance makes it illegal to discharge or dump trash, yard waste, lawn chemicals, pet waste, wastewater, oil, petroleum products, cleaning products, paint products, hazardous waste, sediment caused by land disturbance activities and other pollutants into the City stormwater drainage system. The system includes curbing, streets, side ditches, inlets, streams, lakes, or any waterway.

Our ordinance complies with Shawnee’s State of Kansas Water Pollution Control Permit and is similar to ordinances that have been passed by the other cities in Johnson County. The City of Shawnee focuses on public awareness and education activities to promote keeping our streams and lakes clean through City publications and by participating with the Mid America Regional Council (MARC) and the Johnson County Stormwater Management Program efforts. A pollution prevention hot line reporting system is available through the County which will route complaints to City staff.

Reporting Pollution

    If you have a stormwater pollution incident that you would like to report please use the following guidelines.

    1. If the pollution is significant or dangerous please call 911 immediately. Examples of significant or dangerous pollution include large oil or fuel spills, or any pollution that may require immediate action. After calling 911 notify the City Stormwater Management staff by sending an email to or calling (913) 742-6292 for investigation. City staff will investigate the pollution and contact you with a resolution.

    2. If the pollution involves sanitary sewer backups or overflows contact Johnson County Wastewater for emergencies at (913) 432-4820 or go to for more contact information. After calling Johnson County Wastewater notify the City Stormwater Management staff by sending an email to or calling (913) 742-6292 for investigation. City staff will investigate the pollution and contact you with a resolution.

    3. For any other kinds of pollution contact the City Stormwater Management staff by sending an email to or calling (913) 742-6292 for investigation. City staff will investigate the pollution and contact you with a resolution. When violations are identified the opportunity will be given to property owners to correct the situation or bad practice prior to issuing a citation just like any code violation.

    4. The Johnson County Stormwater Management Program has developed an on-line pollution reporting system. Reports to the county will be forwarded to the City Stormwater Management staff for investigation.

More Information about Stormwater Pollution Prevention
    What is Stormwater Runoff? Stormwater is water from rain or melting snow. It flows from rooftops, over paved streets, sidewalks and parking lots, across bare soil, and through lawns and storm drains. As it flows, runoff collects and carries soil, pet waste, salt, pesticides, fertilizer, oil and grease, litter and other pollutants. This water drains directly into nearby creeks, streams and rivers, without receiving treatment at sewage plants. Polluted stormwater contaminates local waterways. It can harm plants, fish and wildlife, while degrading the quality of water. You can make a difference by following the tips inside. Water that enters storm drains is not cleaned at a wastewater treatment plant before it flows directly to streams, rivers and lakes.

    What is a Watershed? A watershed is an area of land that drains to a common point, such as a creek, stream, river or lake. Every small watershed drains to a larger watershed that eventually flows to the ocean. Protecting the health of watersheds preserves and enhances the quality of life for Independence residents.

    What is a Storm Drain? Storm drains are the metal grates and inlets in streets and curbs. They help prevent flooding by draining rainwater and melted snow off of streets and other paved surfaces.

    Is a Storm Drain System the same thing as a Sanitary Sewer System? Sanitary sewer systems and storm drain systems are not the same. The water that goes down a sink or toilet flows through a sewer system to a wastewater treatment plant where it is treated and cleaned. Water that flows down a driveway or street and into a gutter goes into a storm drain which goes directly to a stream or creek, untreated.

    What’s the problem? While storm drains were designed to divert water from streets, they become dangerous water polluters when harmful substances from lawns and streets flow through them. When clogged with leaves or litter, storm drains can’t do their job and flooding occurs.

Ways That You Can Reduce Pollution
    Use a spray gun when washing your car. Wash on a grassy or gravel area that absorbs water or go to the car wash. Empty wash buckets into sinks, toilets or floor drains. Check for leaks and get them fixed. Never dump automotive fluids down the storm drain; recycle them. Reduce your driving where you can.

    Use water based paints. Recycle paints, stains and solvents at a household hazardous waste collection. Maintain plant cover on your property to keep dirt from eroding and use proper erosion control measures when necessary.

    Don’t drain your pool into storm drains or across neighbors’ property. Drain pools and spas into the sanitary sewer through any plumbed drain in your home like a floor drain or sink.

    Use water efficiently. Don’t flush diapers, cat litter, cigarette butts, coffee grounds, paper towels, etc. Don’t pour chemicals down the drain. Regularly inspect your system and pump as necessary. Don’t park on your drainfield or plant trees there. Never put sheds or sprinkler systems in your drainfield.

    Collect grease in a can or jar and seal for disposal in trash collection. Buy products that are reusable instead of throw-aways. Try environmentally friendly cleaners and cut back on detergents. Avoid buying products containing mercury.

    Never throw trash out on the ground. When hauling, keep loads tightly covered. Carry a litter bag in the car. Don’t be a litter bug!

    Avoid buying products labeled as flammable, toxic, corrosive or reactive. Dispose of hazardous products properly by taking them to a household hazardous waste collection.

    Never rake leaves or grass clippings into the street. Compost your yard waste or have it picked up for recycling. Mulch leaves and grass into the lawn. Landscape with native plants.

    Avoid over application of pesticides and fertilizers. Try organic lawn chemical alternatives. Never use lawn chemicals before a heavy rainfall is expected. Keep fertilizers and pesticides out of streets and storm drains. Properly dispose of lawn chemicals by taking to a household hazardous waste collection.

    Pick up pet waste from your yard and from walks, using a plastic bag and place in the trash.