Friday, May 22, 2015

Yearly inspections of catch basins now mandated

From the Queens Chronicle:

A bill passed unanimously by the City Council last week that would increase inspections and repairs to clogged catch basins is one step in fighting the problem of flooding in Queens, according to two borough councilmen.

The bill, introduced by Councilman Jumaane Williams (D-Brooklyn), would force the Department of Environmental Protection to inspect catch basins on a yearly basis rather than every three years. It would also require the DEP to report twice a year to the mayor and Council speaker about inspections, maintenance and repairs.

Councilman Rory Lancman (D-Fresh Meadows) said he fully supports the measure as another tool in preventing flooding. His district includes a part of Utopia Parkway that has a long history of severe floods due to heavy rainstorms and the topography.

In a telephone interview on Tuesday, Lancman said he had been surprised to learn that the DEP only inspects catch basins every three years.

“It should be every year and this bill does that,” he said.

He pointed out that the public can call 311 to report a clogged drain, but sometimes debris and sediment are underneath and can’t be seen.


Joe Moretti said...

You would think this would just be regular common sense maintenance, not that a bill is needed for this.

NYC government, certainly does not work well at all.

Anonymous said...

I love it when a law has to be passed to mandate something that a city agency is supposed to be doing anyway. Why have agencies if they don't do their jobs???

Anonymous said...

“It should be every year and this bill does that,” he said."

OK But will the DEP comply or come up with more bullshit as to why they can't do it?

Lupita said...

Not only yearly inspections, but fine homeowners and store owners who sweep the garbage from their sidewalks out into the street, less garbage would make it in the catch basins in the first place.

Anonymous said...

About ten years ago the city placed a catch basin near my house. In their infinite wisdom they located it fifteen inches away from the curb.
The basin catches nothing but leaves. Even when we have torrential down pours it goes dry.

Anonymous said...

Is there a City Council file number associated with this?

Anonymous said...

What are the consequences if the inspections are not made? Will the DEP commissioner be fired. Will the Mayor personally pay a fine be sentenced to community service?

anonymouse said...

Lupita got it right. I used to deal with the litigation and comptroller claims by homeowners who complained that flooding was caused by dep's negligence of catch basins. The fact is, DEP has a good system and is diligent about the maintenance....even at three year intervals. The problem is that when people don't sweep/clear debris, it ends up clogging the catch basins. Not to mention the fact that the mains were designed to handle a certain amount of runoff, but when people pave over lawns and driveways, or make other changes to the grading of property without considering the impact on drainage, there is flooding. More frequent inspections will help, but that's not going to change the behavior that creates the problem.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, all the Italian Contractors in Whitestone like to dump in to storm drains, spucally when cleaning their trucks