Municipal separate storm sewer system, or MS4, is a publicly-owned conveyance system that's designed to collect or convey stormwater runoff through storm drains, curbs, ditches, and pipes. These systems eventually discharge the collected stormwater into nearby streams, lakes, or other surface waters. The stormwater collected by the MS4 is often contaminated with pollutants, trash, and debris.

Operators of regulated MS4s are required to develop and implement a stormwater management plan. This plan includes ways the operator or community will reduce the discharge of pollutants from its sewer system. Stormwater control measures, or SCMs, are implemented throughout the MS4 to prevent stormwater from coming in contact with pollutants, or to remove pollutants from stormwater prior to discharge from an area.

The Summit SWCD assists communities with a variety of public education, outreach, involvement and participation programs to help meet the requirements of the local MS4 management plan. These programs include both print and electronic newsletters, social media platforms, community displays, and workshops.

2019 Stormwater Theme: Slow It Down, Spread It Out, Soak It In

In 2019, we aim to promote watershed awareness and protection strategies which will increase the public’s knowledge of the impacts of non-point source pollution. "Runoff Reduction - Slow it Down, Spread it Out, Soak It In" is an educational campaigned targeting the general public and homeowners with a message that connects the consequences of their landscaping practices to the health of their watershed, which includes the Ohio River and Lake Erie. It will also provide tools that they can use to help reduce the stormwater runoff that carries pollution. This year, we'll also encourage the use of healthy landscaping practices to reduce stormwater runoff and improve watershed health. The four quarterly themes for the 2019 program will be:

Winter-Road Snow Placement, Salt Storage
Spring-Streamside Native Plantings and Buffers
Summer-Raingardens, Rainbarrels, Water Storage and Infiltration.
Autumn-Vegetation Reduces Runoff