Surface Water Management

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Surface Water Management

Public Works
Skagit County's Stormwater Management Program

The Problem

Stormwater runoff from streets, parking lots, construction, industrial properties, and residential areas is now recognized as one of the leading sources of pollution to our streams, lakes, wetlands, and Puget Sound. Over 75% of the pollutants entering Puget Sound are through stormwater. Petroleum products, heavy metals, pesticides, fertilizers, sediment, and bacteria from pet waste and failing septic systems can all be present in stormwater runoff.

What's Being Done?

Since February 2007, Skagit County has been the holder of a Phase II National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued by the Department of Ecology. The NPDES permit is intended to improve stormwater quality by focusing on the following areas:

  • Public Involvement
  • Education and Outreach
  • Runoff Control from Development
  • Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
  • Improving the County's Own Operations and Maintenance Activities

What Can You Do?

Every year Skagit County produces a Stormwater Management Program (SWMP) Plan which summarizes how we plan to institute the NPDES permit requirements. The 2019 Stormwater Management Program Plan is now available.
Learn more about Stormwater!

Frequently Asked Questions (Pdf)
How People Can Help Puget Sound!

Skagit County Septics 101 Class is on line

Skagit County Public Health has their free Septics 101 presentation online here.

Septic 101 class topics include:

  • How septic systems are designed to treat sewage
  • How septic systems need to be used so that they can treat sewage effectively
  • Why septic systems need to be maintained
  • What the public health and environmental benefits from function septic systems are
  • How to save thousands of dollars in unnecessary septic system costs
  • What financial resources a homeowner should know about if their septic system needs repairs or replacement (rebate, grant, and loan programs)

Other Available Documents and Information:

We would like to encourage the public to comment on this plan so that it can be improved on in the future. Please send your comments and suggestions to

Illicit Discharge Form
See a water quality problem?
Report it!

Stormwater Pollution Hotline
To report water pollution concerns in unincorporated Skagit County, call (360) 416-1400. For after hours response contact one of the additional spill response numbers listed below.

Other spill response phone numbers include:
Washington Department of Ecology NW Regional Office: 1-425-649-7000
National Response Center: 1-800-424-8802
Washington Emergency Management Division,
1-800-OILS-911 or 1-800-258-5900

For emergency situations that include hazardous waste spills, spills of raw sewage, gasoline, or other hazardous materials, dial 911.


Videos: Stormwater Presentations