County approves first reading of illicit discharge ordinance

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Allows engineering department to inspect facilities and install surveillance and monitoring equipment

By The Staff

HARDIN COUNTY — Hardin Fiscal Court on Tuesday approved the first reading of an illicit discharge ordinance that, if approved, will allow the county’s engineering department to inspect facilities and install monitoring and surveillance equipment to keep track of discharges.
An illicit discharge is defined as any discharge into the stormwater system that is not purely stormwater, and County Engineer Vicki Brackett Meredith said such discharges can contain anything from heavy metals and toxins to bacteria.
However, some discharges are exempt under the ordinance, such as water line flushing and other potable water sources, landscape irrigation and lawn watering, crawl space pumps, air conditioning condensation, non-commercial washing of vehicles and firefighting activities.
Penalties for violating the ordinance can carry penalties of a fine ranging from $10 to $500 for each offense and 12 months in jail if convicted. The county also may suspend access of the stormwater system to those who violate the ordinance.