Milford assessment of storm drains a good step forward

To The Editor:

Milford has initiated a video assessment of the storm drains in town. The primary purpose of this program is to identify the condition of our stormwater pipes and catch basins for future planning purposes. An additional benefit of this work is the identification of pollution sources that can be eliminated. While it’s still very early in the video assessment program, the contractor has identified a number of locations where pet waste has been disposed of in catch basins and we know catch basins and storm drains ultimately drain to the Souhegan River.

We have recently seen the results of testing of the Souhegan River’s water quality by the all volunteer Souhegan River Watershed Association. Results are discouraging when it comes to E.coli bacteria levels. Pet waste can play a large role in our water quality degradation. The pet waste being thrown into the catch basins, even if bagged, can be a significant source of bacteria. This is an unlawful activity defined as an illicit discharge. The town is required by its federal stormwater permit to seek out and eliminate these sources of pollution. We are requesting the help of all pet owners to make sure pet wastes are properly disposed. There are trash receptacles at our parks that can accept properly bagged pet waste, and the waste also can be thrown out with your home trash.

Please help us spread the word, and let’s see if we can improve the Souhegan River.

Fred Elkind

Milford environmental coordinator