Permit Overview


The federal Clean Water Act was amended in 1987 to include municipal and other urban storm water discharges on the list of regulated sources of water pollution. In November 1999, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promulgated Phase II of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) storm water regulations, which requires approximately 125 Southeast Michigan municipalities, including Wayne County, to obtain storm water discharge permits.

Wayne County, through its Rouge River National Wet Weather Demonstration Project (Rouge Project) assisted the Michigan Department Environmental Quality (MDEQ) in the development and 1997 promulgation of a new watershed-based General Permit for municipal storm water discharges (General Permit). This permit, and its successor (MDEQ 2003 General Storm Water Permit), were approved by the EPA as an option available to local communities and other public agencies to comply with the requirements of the Phase II federal NDPES storm water regulations. In 2013, the MDEQ moved away from issuing General Permits for municipal storm water and is now issuing individual municipal separate sanitary storm sewer (MS4) permits.

MDEQ Storm Water Permit Program

Existing NPDES Municipal Separate Storm Water Permit

Wayne County was among the first communities in Michigan to obtain coverage under the new watershed-based municipal storm water permit program. Wayne County's municipal separate storm water discharges are currently authorized by Certificate of Coverage (COC) MIG610040 under the General Storm Water Discharge Permit (MIG610000) (General Permit) issued by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ). The Water Quality Management Division coordinates Wayne County's compliance with this storm water discharge permit.

Wayne County Departments with major responsibilities under the General Permit COC include Public Services (Facilities Management Division, Land Resource Management Division, Engineering Division, Parks Division, Roads Division, and Water Quality Management Division) and Public Health (Environmental Health Division). The Water Quality Management Division (WQMD) coordinates Wayne County General Permit activities with watershed communities, counties, agencies, watershed alliances and advisory groups, and other interested parties. Wayne County's coverage under the General Permit applies to its operations, facilities, and functions throughout the municipal separate sanitary storm sewer area.

Wayne County's current MDEQ-approved Storm Water Pollution Prevention Initiative (SWPPI) describes all efforts that the County is committed to perform to comply with its storm water permit and to achieve the goals and objectives of the various watershed management plans that Wayne County is a partner in implementing.

Wayne County Watersheds

Wayne County 2016 Application for NPDES MS4 Permit Reissuance

Wayne County was required to apply to the MDEQ for reissuance of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit by April 1, 2016 for a new five year permit term. After considerable negotiation between the County and the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE - formerly MDEQ), the County made modifications to the permit application in November 2019. The documents below comprise Wayne County's latest application for reissuance of its NPDES MS4 permit:

Wayne County Annual NPDES MS4 Permit Compliance Reports