City of Montgomery converting stormwater into taxpayer savings
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - "By harnessing natural resources, we're able to serve the public faster, cheaper, and better while also having a benefit to the environment," said Gary Heitkamp, the Assistant Public Works Director for the City of Montgomery.
This 5,000 gallon tank recently installed at Montgomery's Public Works facility is converting what Mother Nature provides into taxpayer savings.
Heitkamp explained, "It was an idea from our Montgomery Environmental Commission. They are a group of Montgomery residents that look at ways for us to help the environment in a local way as well as reduce our energy costs and utility costs for the city."
Thanks to a grant from the Hamilton County Storm Water District, the City collects rain from the facility's 5,700 square foot roof and funnels the water into the tank.
"If you get about 1.5" of rain that will actually fill this 5,000 gallon tank. If we get approximately 40" of rain per year, we can actually fill this tank about 25 times within a year. That's about 125,000 gallons," said Heitkamp.
The water from this green initiative is then distributed throughout the city over time to make the city green.
Heitkamp said, "What we can use it for is filling up our water truck, which we use for watering our flower beds and our hanging baskets downtown as well as newly planted trees."
The water is used in other ways during the colder months of the year.
"We can also use the water for our salt brine operation where we make our own salt brine here for our winter operation," explained Heitkamp.
Harvesting the water in the tank removes stormwater from the creeks and prevents erosion but also puts tax dollars to best use.
"The other win is that it's saving taxpayers money because we're able to use this water instead of purchasing it from Cincinnati Water Works," said Heitkamp.