New program to help property owners prevent sewer backups

05/01/2017 - SD1 is offering financial assistance to help property owners prevent sewer backups caused by wet weather. The SD1 Board of Directors approved a Backup Assistance Program during its April 18, 2017 meeting. The program opened to customers on May 1. 

Wet-weather sewer backups occur when too much rain falls in a short period of time, exceeding the sewer system’s level of service. As more water enters the system, the pressure builds, and the sewage goes wherever it can – sometimes backing up into homes through floor drains, toilets or other plumbing fixtures. 

“While special pumps or valves can be installed in private plumbing to prevent backups, the cost of doing so is often a barrier,” said SD1 Executive Director Adam Chaney. “SD1’s Backup Assistance Program will make it easier for property owners to take action to protect their homes.”

The Backup Assistance Program will provide up to $5,000 per eligible property to help pay for installation of a backflow valve or special pump within their plumbing system. These mechanical devices prevent backups by separating a building’s private plumbing from the public sewer system during rain events. 

The $5,000 per-property maximum reflects only the cost of installing a valve or pump in a typical house, and does not cover any costs for work to upgrade plumbing or electrical systems to current standards. Total program funding in SD1’s Fiscal Year 2018, which begins July 1, 2017, will be capped at $300,000. 

“We believe this program balances the desire to help our customers in flood prone areas with SD1’s commitment to fiscal responsibility.” said Chaney. “We’re glad to work together with affected customers and the cities in our service area to help meet this community need.”

"This is a good first step in addressing an issue some of our residents have been struggling with for years," said Loren Wolff, City of Covington’s interim city manager. "We're looking forward to partnering with SD1 more in the future to move Northern Kentucky forward."

Learn more about the Backup Assistance Program. Customers who have questions about the program should call SD1 at 859-578-7450 and ask to speak to the backup assistance program coordinator.

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