Sewer/Stormwater Department

Public Works Director: Kevin Fear


Phone: (541) 929-3579
Fax: (541) 929-3586
Line Locate Service: 1-800-332-2344 - Call Before You Dig!
Location: Beau Vencill Public Works Compound, 1515 Willow Ln., Philomath, OR 97370
Mailing address: PO Box 400, Philomath, OR 97370

Sewer or Stormwater

What’s the difference?

Stormwater is surface water that drains from the land into the stormwater collection system or directly into creeks and rivers. The stormwater collection system includes all publicly maintained pipes, culverts, gutters, catch basin, ditches, channels, ponds, wetlands, and related waterways.

Stormwater runoff occurs when rainfall is unable to be absorbed into the ground. The amount of runoff is primarily dependent upon the degree to which the natural landscape is covered with "hard" surfaces, such as rooftops, parking lots and streets. When stormwater comes in contact with these hard surfaces, pollutants—like paint, oil, litter and fertilizer—are picked up in the public drainage system and discharged untreated into our creeks and rivers – places we use for recreation and drinking water.

In contrast, the wastewater collection system carries used water from the toilet, sink, shower, dishwasher, etc. to the wastewater treatment facility. Here the wastewater receives treatment before being released into the Mary’s River.

By remembering that Philomath’s stormwater and wastewater collection systems are separate, it’s easy to decide whether a pollutant or substance should be allowed to enter a storm drain. If fish can’t swim in it, birds and animals can’t drink it, or children can’t play in it, keep it out of the stormwater system and keep Philomath’s waterways full of life.

Learn more about what you can do to prevent pollution from running off into the stormwater collection system by reviewing the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Tips brochure.

City staff are doing their part, too. They are putting into action a stormwater program that meets federal NPDES (National Pollution Discharge Elimination System) permit requirements and the TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) requirements. You can read the City of Philomath Master Stormwater Program plan here.

Additional stormwater program information is available at the Benton County Stormwater website.