The primary responsibilities of the Engineering Division is the implementation of the County Capital Projects that include roadway and stormwater improvements, reviewing encroachment permits, and engineering and construction oversight for new facilities.
The Engineering Division also reviews all new development plans to ensure compliance with Dorchester County ordinances and design requirements. During construction, the Engineering Division monitors construction activities for stormwater compliance and quality control.
The NPDES Phase II General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Regulated Small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4) is also managed by this Division.
Why Manage Stormwater?
Every resident and business in Dorchester County contributes to stormwater runoff and pollution.
Homes and businesses has impervious surfaces such as a roof and driveway that increase the amount of stormwater runoff and decrease the amount of natural environment that is available to absorb water. The loss of this surface area means that stormwater is not absorbed quickly enough into the ground by the remaining areas. The increased water flows above ground until it can be collected. This water needs to go somewhere and the systems that takes it away need to be maintained in order to protect property.
Stormwater is not treated before it enters the rivers, creeks, marshes and lakes (waterways) in our area. Pollution from vehicles, fertilizer, pet waste and other household activities are also stormwater problems. When these items enter the drainage systems it can cause excess vegetation growth in ditches and ponds and affect drinking, fishing and recreational waters. Federal Regulations, from the Clean Water Act, require the County to implement programs to help improve water quality in our surrounding waterways.
If drainage systems that collect this water and remove it from the roadways are not maintained flooding can occur.
Development also reduces the area available for collecting the increased volumes of stormwater.
Older developments may one day require additional attention to reduce flooding occurrences, as they are not protected by engineered drainage systems.