Storm Drain Labeling Project

Starting October 2009, most of the storm-water drains in the Village of Livonia will be labeled with the phrase “PLEASE DON’T POLLUTE —  DRAINS TO CONESUS LAKE”.

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Storm Drain Labeling Project


Starting in October, 2009 most of the storm-water drains in the Village of Livonia will labeled with the phrase “PLEASE DON’T POLLUTE / DRAINS TO CONESUS LAKE”.


The following provides information about the project:


What is a storm drain? A storm drain system is a network of underground pipes or open ditches designed to control flooding by transporting storm water to a water body. A storm-drain system may include curbs, gutters, channels, ditches, pipes, and culverts. In developed areas, most non-point source pollution enters natural water bodies through storm-drain systems.


Why label storm drains? A storm-drain label is a great way to make people in our watershed more aware of non-point-source polluted runoff. Storm-drain labeling reminds residents about the connection between storm drains and Conesus Lake. Labeling storm drains has become a popular public educational tool. Some urban areas are required under the Federal EPA Phase II Storm Water Regulations to conduct a public outreach program such as labeling storm drains, although no area in the Conesus Lake Watershed meets that threshold criterion.

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What is non-point source pollution?   Pollution from a wide variety of activities that is difficult to measure and where it is not practical to identify the original source is considered non-point source pollution. Refer to the Conesus Lake Watershed Management Plan (CLWMP) for an explanation of non-point source pollution and how it affects Conesus Lake. You can find the complete plan at


Why be concerned with what enters a storm drain? Anything flushed down a storm drain is not treated before it enters Conesus Lake. This means that wastes on the streets, sidewalks, and other impervious surfaces go directly into Conesus Lake and not a wastewater treatment plant. Conesus Lake’s 18 streams drain into the lake from numerous sub-watersheds throughout the 70-square-mile Conesus watershed. Polluted runoff causes harm to our lake where we fish, swim, and many of us get our drinking water.


Who is sponsoring the project? The Village of Livonia and the Conesus Lake Association are co-sponsors of the project. The Conesus Lake Watershed Management Council has endorsed the project and added it to their 2009 Work Program. For more information, refer to the Conesus Lake Watershed Management Plan Recommendation C–3, “Develop public education campaigns on the impact of human activities on the heath of the Lake.”


Who is labeling the drains?  Scouts from Boy Scout Troop 174 Livonia are performing the work under the leadership of Matt Kelly. The project is fulfilling Matt’s requirements to attain the rank of Eagle Scout. The Conesus Lake Association is represented by project leader Mike Saviola and assisted by John Connelly. Both Mr. Saviola and Mr. Connelly are on the Conesus Lake Association’s board of directors.


When the drains were labeled near my house a blue, fish-shaped “hangtag” was placed on my door. Why does it refer to Monroe County and Lake Ontario? The blue tags were provided to us as a courtesy of the Stormwater Coalition of Monroe County. They were produced as part of the Monroe County storm-drain labeling program. Pollution entering Conesus Lake drains to the Genesee River and ultimately to Lake Ontario. In effect, our lake is part of the Lake Ontario watershed and for that reason the Stormwater Coalition of Monroe County saw the logic of providing us with this additional education tool at no charge. For more information about reducing storm water pollution and the Monroe County program visit:> .


Why are some of the storm-drains labeled with “Drains to Lake Ontario”?  A small number of drains in the northeast part of the Village do not discharge to the Conesus Lake Watershed.


Will storm drains be labeled in other areas of the Conesus Lake watershed? Yes, future labeling projects are being planned for other areas within the watershed.