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City of Maumee Sewer Remediation Work Underway

MAUMEE, Ohio, November 1, 2021 – The City of Maumee is actively working with the Ohio EPA to mitigate sanitary sewer overflows (SSO) in an effort to bring it into compliance after self reporting sanitary overflow into the Maumee River.

Currently, the City of Maumee is working with state officials who have jurisdiction over the Maumee River and sanitary discharge therein. This work, and the remediation of Maumee’s infrastructure problems, are its top priorities.

“We want to assure our residents, and those in surrounding communities, that Maumee is striving to correct its SSO problems and to be an environmentally conscious City,” said Patrick Burtch, Maumee City Administrator. “We are working aggressively, in partnership with the Ohio EPA, to fix the problems with our aging infrastructure —some of which is over 100 years old.”

Accomplishments and action steps to date include:

  • GIS (Geographic Information System) Mapping is almost complete. This will provide a base map to track metering locations and storm and sanitary flow. The base map is currently 98% complete.
  • “Woods” test is in place and is checked regularly before/after all rain events. This is a remedial, simple effort to determine high flow in storm and sanitary outfalls. The system was updated to electronic monitoring devices in October when flow monitors were installed at 20 locations including all known overflow locations.
  • All sanitary sewer overflow reports are being filed as required. City staff are in constant contact with the Ohio EPA.
  • Weirs (diverters) have been adjusted in specific manholes to increase capacity and reduce illicit discharge in minor rain events. A 3rd pump operation and new, efficient impellers have been added to the Key St. pump station to add extra pumping capacity and increase efficiency. Pumps will be removed and rebuilt to include new motors on each pump.
  • A flow meter has been installed at the Birch Station to accurately report overflow pumping quantities during heavy rain events.
  • City staff discovered sanitary sewer leads attached to the storm sewer in one of the older sections of the city. A firm has been hired to design the solution.
  • Construction will begin in November 2021 on the reconstruction of the Elizabeth St. lift station to accommodate efficient operations.
  • The city purchased a new flusher unit, with a camera, for performing sewer line evaluation which is imperative to finding illicit connections and outfalls. A mile of camera investigation has already taken place
  • Smoke testing began in August and is currently researching areas and testing an expanded area of the entire smoke map, including the structures that are potentially connected to the wrong sewer main.
  • The City and citizen volunteers cleared all storm outfalls of brush and invasive species on the banks of the Maumee River in Maumee, to accommodate safe access for inspection.
  • Volunteers have donated over 1,500 man-hours to clear invasive species on the riverfront. The City also retained a private company to clear another 2,500 linear feet of the riverfront.
  • The City Council, on Monday, November 1, 2021, will be authorizing the largest and most costly study component of the remediation thus far by soliciting RFPQ’s from consulting firms to develop a full emergency response plan (ERP), a Capacity, Management, Operations, and Maintenance program (CMOM), and a Sewer Evaluation System Evaluation study (SSES) also, all of which the Ohio EPA is requiring.

In addition, the City is aggressively pursuing funding— through grants and bonds—to help defray the cost of these projects.

To date:

  • An OPWC grant was received for the 2021 relining project. Work has been completed for uptown Maumee sanitary sewer relining.
  • $2 MM in bonds have been sold to support the continued sanitary sewer lining projects.
  • In August, an ARPA WSG grant application was submitted for $5MM for sewer lining in area 2 of the smoke testing map.
  • In September, an ARPA WSG grant application was submitted for $5MM for various water and sewer infrastructure improvements.
  • Notice of Intent filed for Revolving Loan funds totaling 18MM.

Regarding the recently announced Maumee River Commission, organized by the Lucas County Commissioners, Maumee Mayor Rich Carr stated: “We stand with our citizens in all efforts to study the effects of sanitary discharges or overflows to the Maumee River. We recognize the potential negative impacts Combined Sewer Overflows and Sanitary Sewer Discharges have on
our ecosystem and the Great Lakes regardless of whether a community holds a valid permit to do so or not. We further encourage this Commission to expand its mission to shed light on all who are contributing to this risk in the Maumee River. Whether permitted to or not, all discharges and overflows of sanitary sewage constitute an acute public health risk and so comprehensive best practices must be applied to all. We also encourage the Maumee River Commission to add recognized environmental experts, experienced in water quality issues, and sanitary engineers to its team to ensure comprehensive solutions for the health of the river.”

About the City of Maumee
Founded in 1817, Maumee is a city in Lucas County, Ohio. It is located along the Maumee River and is about 10 miles southwest of Toledo. Based on the latest 2020 data from the US census, the current population of Maumee is 13,669. Maumee, Ohio is the 2,450th largest city in the U.S.

Whether you live in Maumee, work in Maumee, or are visiting Maumee, you are sure to recognize the pride we have in our community. We were named an All-American City in 2006, Best Hometown Ohio 2016-2017, and 18th Safest City in the State of Ohio 2019.