DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond says the county has met an important consent decree deadline. Beginning immediately, all new sewer connections will be certified by a Georgia Professional Engineer and the fully developed hydraulic model will be used in the certification process as required by the consent decree. The consent decree was entered by the county in 2011 and is designed to ensure compliance with the Federal Clean Water Act and the Georgia Water Quality Control Act to improve the viability of the county’s sewers for generations to come.
“DeKalb County has met an important deadline that demonstrates that we are committed to fully complying with the consent decree,” CEO Thurmond said at the first public update on the consent decree. “We want to go above and beyond the consent decree requirements to protect public health and the county’s natural resources.”
The consent decree provides a roadmap for working cooperatively with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD). It requires the county to implement a hydraulic model program and identify available capacity for service connections to the county sewer system. On Dec. 20, the county informed EPA that the county considered itself in full compliance with these requirements. The county will continue to work cooperatively with the EPA and EPD on all aspects of the ongoing consent decree.
The eight and-half-year consent decree calls for significant levels of sanitary sewer system inspection, assessment, rehabilitation and repair. The county has made major progress toward the consent decree such as cleaning 220 miles of sewer, removing 5.1 tons of debris and completing 1,821 stream-crossing inspections.