Sump pumps must discharge outside beginning Friday

Photo by: City of West Fargo
Photo by: City of West Fargo

(West Fargo, ND) -- All sump pumps in West Fargo must switch to discharge outside beginning Friday, April 15th. This regulation includes properties with sump pump variances for winter months.

The City of West Fargo requires this action to meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requirement to have separate stormwater and sanitary sewer water systems. Sump pumps discharging outside help to ensure the sewer system is not overwhelmed during snow melt and rain events, which can lead to sewage backup in properties and partially treated sewage water emptying into the Sheyenne River.

Sump pump water diverted outside should drain away from buildings to prevent recirculation. The City recommends discharging into backyards and coordinating with neighbors to ensure sump pump water is not causing drainage concerns.

Additionally, sump pump drainage hoses cannot cross sidewalks or positioned in a way that allows the water to pool on sidewalks. Both scenarios are safety hazards and considered illegal in the City of West Fargo.

Residents must obtain a sump pump variance and pay a $5 monthly fee year-round to discharge water from the sump pump into the sanitary sewer system during winter months. The variance is only valid from October 15th to April 15th. The $5 fee is paid through the property’s utility bill. The sump pump water must divert outside during the remainder of the year.

Properties found not in compliance with this ordinance will be notified and charged $100 per month until brought into compliance.

If you have questions or concerns about discharging your sump pump outside, you're asked to contact Public Works at (701) 515-5400.