Drainage is stormwater that does not soak into the ground. It refers to water that falls as rain and runs off the land, and especially off of pavement or structures placed on the land. The city’s drainage system handles this water, and it consists of pipes, inlets, culverts, street gutters, ditches, channels, creeks, lakes, ponds, dams, tunnels and floodwalls. Drainage can be a problem because of flooding, erosion and impacts on water quality. The Stormwater Compliance Fee pays for programs that prevent, mitigate and/or correct these problems.
The drainage system should not be confused with the sanitary sewage system, which takes away water used in homes, businesses and industries for toilets, sinks, showers, washing machines and various types of business processes. The sanitary sewer system is a different system of pipes and infrastructure that lead to a wastewater treatment plant.