FACTS: Sewer overflows can occur when rainwater or groundwater enters the underground pipes that carry sewage to the treatment plant. The extra water can cause the pipes to overflow at the treatment plant, and result in the release of untreated sewage into the environment. Sewer overflows are quite common in the Willamette Valley, due to the winter rainfall. However, sewer overflows at the City of Dallas Wastewater Treatment Plant are rare and, when they occur, generally last only a fraction of a day. The City has been working to address sanitary sewer overflows by replacing older, leaking underground pipes, and removing direct connections where rainwater enters the sewer system. Over the last 3 years, the City has invested more than $1.5 million in projects to address rainwater or groundwater entering the system. System overflows during the last 5 calendar years are shown below:
|Year||Number||Description of Overflow(s)|
|2014||1||March 8 for 5 minutes (equipment malfunction)|
|2015||4||December 7 and December 18 due to a continuous storm*|
|2016||1||November 24 & 25 for 24.5 hours|
|2017||3||January 1 for 17 hours, February 5 for 15 hours, and February 9 for 14 hours|
*The overflows in 2015 occured during the storm cycle which resulted in a federally declared disaster in the state of Oregon
This winter, the Willamette Valley has experienced extreme rainfall. As a result, sewer overflows are above our average of about 1 per year. The City has experienced 4 overflows over the last 4 months due to the abnormal precipitation. When overflows occur, the City follows our State and Federal permitting requirements and protocols. One of the requirements is to post signage downstream of the treatment plant. As a precaution, the signage always stays in place for several days - much longer than the duration of the overflow. For further questions, please contact the City at 503.831.3562.
RUMOR: Why can't we just use the $60,000 in SDC fees that were going to build pickle ball courts to help fix the streets?
FACTS: System Development Charges (SDCs) are a one-time fee imposed on new development to recover the cost of the additional capacity needed to serve new customers. SDCs can be charged for the following 5 types of facilities: water systems, sewer systems, stormwater systems, transportation systems, and parks.
SDCs can only be used on projects that increase facility capacity. SDCs can only be used on new construction or expansion of existing facilities. They can NOT be used for maintenance or operation costs. Further, each SDC fund can only be used for that specific facility (Water SDCs can only be used to expand water facilities, Parks SDCs can only be used for new parks, etc.).
RUMOR: The Council is closing the Dallas Aquatic Center
FACTS: The City Council is not working on closing the Aquatic Center. The motion, made by Councilor Garus, essentially commits the Council to investigating other possible revenue streams to fund the pool other than using General Fund money. The Council agreed (by a 5-4 vote) to study alternate funding options for the Aquatic Center in an effort to ensure we’re finding every revenue source possible and being responsible with our citizens' money.