HAMPDEN — Tighe and Bond presented an annual update for the town’s municipal separate storm sewer systems or MS4, stormwater program to the Hampden Board of Selectmen during its June 3 meeting.

During the update, Project Manager Kelly Doherty and Planner Haley Rivers stated that the town was “proactively meeting” its requirements for the stormwater program. Within the presentation, they outlined work that had been completed in the previous permit years, as well as future work to occur in the coming year.
During the previous permit years, one area that the town worked toward was its Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination Program, Rivers explained. This is a program that seeks to identify and remove pollutants in the stormwater, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Hampden’s work was completed in three phases and found “elevated E. coli and nitrogen,” Rivers said. She stated that recommended actions were provided by Tighe and Bond to the town to address this issue, which included reaching out and educating local private businesses that may be connected to these pollutants.

As part of the Connecticut River watershed, the stormwater from Hampden is connected to the Long Island Sound, Rivers explained. In addition, the stormwater is also connected to the Scantic River. As a result, Hampden’s stormwater is considered “impaired,” as the Scantic River has an E. coli impairment and Long Island Sound has a nitrogen impairment, she said.

Rivers also noted that the town should work with the state’s Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness program as well as plan during road construction to install better stormwater management retrofits.

Moving forward, the town is recommended to continue its public messaging to residents and developers in the area to increase involvement as well as to join the Connecticut River Stormwater Committee to increase access to resources, Doherty said.

Other recommendations stated by Rivers and Doherty included maintaining the town’s tracking of inspections, installing stormwater management retrofits when possible and continuing to monitor for illicit discharge.

For more information about the annual MS4 update, visit the town’s website. Informational documents are available on the Stormwater Committee page at hampdenma.gov/stormwater-committee.