MADIGAN: CITY OF ELMHURST TO PAY $25,000 FINE FOR SANITARY SYSTEM OVERFLOWS
Consent Order to Resolve Attorney General’s Lawsuit Requires City to Complete Infrastructure Improvement Projects to Address Overloaded Wastewater Management System
Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan today announced a consent order with the City of Elmhurst to ensure it completes necessary infrastructure improvement projects designed to address its overloaded sanitary system, which has experienced repeated overflows into a local tributary of the Des Plaines River and area residences. The City also agreed to pay a $25,000 fine to resolve Madigan’s lawsuit and allegations of water pollution violations.
“This order will protect both public health and the environment by ensuring that the City completes the necessary improvements to its sanitary system to reverse the effects of what historically has been an overloaded system,” Madigan said.
The consent order requires the City to complete the public infrastructure improvement projects it has underway to relieve pressure and increase capacity within the Elmhurst sanitary sewer system. The order also requires the City to complete a focused study on the sources of inflow into the sanitary sewer system from area businesses and homes and propose a plan to reduce inflow to the system, which must be reviewed and approved by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA). Among other requirements set forth by the order, the City must provide the State with annual progress reports on its efforts to meet all conditions of the consent order.
In addition, the City agreed to install “green infrastructure” models at four locations along the Salt Creek Greenway Trail, which runs through the City, these techniques include installing green roof systems and native plantings and rain gardens. The City also will install educational panels at the beginning of the trail and at each location that describe the techniques being used to provide public education display but also help reduce runoff into the sanitary system.
Today’s order resolves a lawsuit filed by the Attorney General’s office in 2011 based on a referral from the IEPA, alleging water pollution violations and citing the City’s failure to prevent sanitary system overflows.
Assistant Attorney General Nichole Sangha handed the case for Attorney General Madigan’s Environmental Bureau.