The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines stormwater as a rainwater or melted snow that runs off streets, lawns, and other sites. When stormwater is absorbed into soil, it is filtered and ultimately replenishes aquifers or flows into streams and rivers.

The Town of Waynesville utilizes its Stormwater Management Plan to improve local water quality and comply with the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit (NPDES) and the applicable provisions of the Clean Water Act. The Stormwater Management Plan comprises Public Education and Outreach, Public Participation, Construction Site Runoff Controls, Post-Construction Site Runoff Controls, IDDE (Illicit Discharge, Detention and Elimination), Pollution Prevention and Good Housekeeping, and Annual Self-Assessments. The goal of the stormwater program is to preserve, restore, and protect local waterways as well as address the needs of the local community.

Town of Waynesville MS4 Public Education Poster

Water Cycle Glossary of Terms

Town of Waynesville Stormwater Map is located on the website. Please click here to access the PDF version of the map. The map was last updated in January 2022, and it is updated periodically. The online version of the map contains the following layers:

  • Municipal and private SCMs within the Town of Waynesville- type, ownership, and date of the last inspection;
  • Outfalls- culverts and outfalls as of 2020;
  • Storm drains
  • Catch basins
  • Waynesville Hydro Clip- major streams;
  • Grease traps
  • Zoning Districts
  • Town of Waynesville boundaries

Outfalls Map (as of July 2022)

Map of SCMs and outfalls inspected in FY 2021-2022 (as of May 2022)

Stormwater questions or to report an illicit discharge:
Monday to Friday, 8 am - 4:30 pm

Development Services: email: or call: (828) 356-1172

Haywood Waterways: email: or call: (828) 476-4667 EXT 10

Holidays and After Hours

Call: (828) 456-5363

NC Department of Environmental Quality Hotline

Call: 1-866-STOP-MUD

When calling, please be prepared to share the following information: time/date, location, and description of the issue

Please check the sections in the drop-down menu below to learn about our stormwater program.


About the Stormwater Program

NPDES Program 

In response to the 1987 amendments to the Clean Water Act, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) developed Phase I of the Stormwater Program in 1990. Phase I of the program requires a NPDES permit coverage for medium and large municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) serving populations of 100,000 people or more.

The Stormwater Phase II Final Rule (1999) was the next step taken by the EPA to protect the water resources of the United States from polluted stormwater runoff. Phase II of the NPDES program requires operators of small municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) with population less than 100,000 to obtain a NPDES permit and develop a stormwater management program. The goals of the NPDES Phase II program are to reduce the discharge of pollutants, to protect water quality, and to satisfy the appropriate water quality requirements of the Clean Water Act. Learn more about the NPDES Phase I and Phase II stormwater guidance on the NC Department of the Environmental Quality website

In North Carolina, it is required that a Phase II municipality develops, implements, and enforces the following "Six (6) Minimum Measures" to stay in compliance:

1. Public education and outreach

2. Public participation/involvement

3. Illicit discharge detection and elimination

4. Construction site stormwater runoff control

5. Post-construction runoff control

6. Pollution prevention/good housekeeping

What is an NPDES permit?

The Clean Water Act prohibits anybody from discharging "pollutants" through a "point source" into a "water of the United States" unless they have an NPDES permit. The permit will contain limits on what you can discharge, monitoring and reporting requirements,  and other provisions to ensure that the discharge does not hurt water quality or people's health. Click here to learn more about the NPDES Permit.

Annual Self-Assessment

The NCDEQ requires all MS4s to submit annual self-assessment reports that evaluate the implementation of the stormwater program. What is an MS4?

Copies of the submitted self-assessment reports for the Town of Waynesville can be found below:

Self-Assessment FY20-21

Self-Assessment FY21-22 (will need to zoom in)


Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination Program (IDDE)

The Town of Waynesville Stormwater Management Plan identifies specific elements of implementation and enforcement of the IDDE Program by the Town in accordance with the 40 CFR §122.34(b)(3). The purpose of the Town's IDDE Program is to prohibit, detect, and eliminate illicit connections, discharging, illegal dumping, and spills into the MS4. The program also focuses on staff training and public awareness of illicit discharges, improper disposal of waste, and reporting procedures.

Waynesville has developed the IDDE Plan that includes standard operating procedures and documentation for investigation of potential illicit discharges, illicit connections, and illegal dumping. The NC DEQ officially approved the Town's Plan on June 17, 2022. Waynesville Development Services Department staff review this plan annually for potential updates. Click here to access the PDF version of the Waynesville IDDE Plan.  

As a part of the program, the Town conducts regular dry weather (no rain in previous 72 hours) inspections of the storm drain system outfalls. The goal of these inspections is to prevent potential illicit discharges, identify non-storm water flows and sources of pollution. 

Town of Waynesville Outfall Map (currently being updated)

Map of Inspected Outfalls 2022

Waynesville Outfall Inspection Form 

What is the Difference between Stormwater Systems and Sanitary Sewer Systems?
  • Water that flows to the stormwater system through curb inlets on the streets (or other structures) usually goes directly into the creek, stream, or river. This water does not get treated at the plant. Stormwater systems are also called storm sewer systems.
  • Water that goes to the sanitary sewer system through toilet flushing, shower drains, etc., is treated at the wastewater treatment plant to achieve certain quality before it gets discharged into a creek or stream. 
What is an Illicit Discharge?

The EPA defines an illicit discharge as “...any discharge to an MS4 that is not composed entirely of stormwater...” with some exceptions, such as discharges from NPDES-permitted industrial sources and discharges from fire-fighting activities.

Illicit discharges are considered “illicit” because MS4s are not designed to accept, process, or discharge these non-stormwater wastes. They result in untreated flows to the stormwater system and significantly degrade water quality, disrupt aquatic habitats, and pose serious risks to human health and wildlife. Pollutants commonly found in illicit discharges include:

  • Heavy metals
  • Toxins
  • Grease and oil
  • Paint
  • Solvents
  • Nutrients
  • Raw sewage (viruses and bacteria). 

Follow this link to the EPA resource to learn more about illicit discharge detection and elimination measures. 

The Town of Waynesville Illicit Discharge Ordinance specifically prohibits illicit discharges to the storm sewer system. However, some non-stormwater discharges are allowed if they do not significantly impact water quality. These discharges include:

  • Residential vehicle washing
  • Filter backwash and draining associated with swimming pools
  • Discharges from fire-fighting activities
  • Uncontaminated ground water
  • Irrigation water
  • Street wash water
  • Condensate from residential or commercial air conditioning
  • Collected stormwater from foundation or footing drains
  • Discharges from pumping or draining of natural watercourses
Report an Illicit Discharge

Only rain goes into a storm drain! Call (828) 456-8647 (Development Services Department) or email: to report illegal dumping into streams or storm drains.

Additional Resources

Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination Guidance Manual by the Center for Watershed Protection

Post-Construction Stormwater Management

The Town of Waynesville Stormwater Ordinance requires that Stormwater Control Measures (SCMs) be inspected annually to continue their function in controlling stormwater runoffs to the extent they were originally designed. An inspection can be performed by a qualified service provider, such as a North Carolina professional engineer, landscape architect, or a person certified by the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service for stormwater inspection and maintenance. 

For questions about the post-construction stormwater requirements, contact Olga Grooman: call 828-356-1172 or email 

Relevant Forms and Documents:

NC DEQ Stormwater Design Manual

SCM Operations and Maintenance Agreements

Most Common Stormwater Control Measures

The Cover Sheet below needs to be submitted along with one inspection form for each SCM on the site:

Post-Construction Inspection Cover Sheet

Bioretention Cell 

Dry Detention Basin/Dry Pond

Filter Strip/Level Spreader

Grassed Swale

Infiltration Basin

Infiltration Trench

Permeable Pavement

Proprietary Devices (StormFilter)

Rainwater Harvesting

Sand Filter

Underground Detention


Wet Detention Basin/Wet Pond

Pollution Prevention and Good Housekeeping Program

The Town of Waynesville Stormwater Management Plan provides a comprehensive pollution prevention and good housekeeping strategy for the Town's municipal facilities and operations. Pollution prevention and good housekeeping is accomplished through the implementation of programs that collectively address the ultimate goal of preventing or reducing pollutant runoff from municipal operations, such as parks and open space maintenance, fleet and building maintenance, new construction and land disturbances, and municipal storm sewer system maintenance.

Municipal SCM Operations and Maintenance Program manages municipally-owned, operated, and/or maintained stormwater control measures (SCMs). The Town maintains a current inventory of its SCMs, performs SCMs inspections and maintenance, and documents the records. 

Public Hearings


The Town of Waynesville Board of Aldermen will hold a Public Hearing on Tuesday, March 22, 2022, at 6:00 p.m., in the Town Hall Board Room located at 9 South Main Street, Waynesville, NC, to consider the text amendment to the Stormwater Ordinance, Land Development Standards (LDS) Sections 12.5 and 15.4.1. Please contact Development Services at 828-456-8647 with questions.

The Town of Waynesville Planning Board will hold a Public Hearing on February 21, 2022 at 5:30 pm, in the Town Hall Board Room, located at 9 South Main Street, Waynesville, NC, to consider the text amendment to the Stormwater Ordinance, Land Development Standards (LDS) Sections 12.5 and 15.4.1. Please contact Development Services at 828-456-8647 with questions.

Please click here to access a copy of the proposed text amendment.


The Town of Waynesville Board of Aldermen held a Public Hearing on Tuesday, December 14, 2021, at 6:00 p.m. in the Town Hall Board Room located at 9 South Main Street, Waynesville. The purpose of this Public Hearing was to allow the presentation of the Town of Waynesville Stormwater Program, stormwater issues, and provide a platform for public input. Please contact Development Services at 828-456-8647 with questions.

Please click here to access a copy of the public presentation from 12/14/2021. 

Please click here to access the Mountaineer article about this Public Hearing. 

Please click here to access the Minutes from the presentation on 12/14/2021.

Community Projects

Rain Garden at Enchantment Park (2021)

Development Services, Waynesville Public Works Department, Haywood Waterways, and students from Western Carolina University have finished the restoration of the Rain Garden at the Enchantment Park of the Waynesville Greenway. It is not just a garden. It is a stormwater control measure constructed in several layers: 12 inches of wash stone on the bottom, filter fabric tightly covering the wash stone, soil with plants, and mulch. Filter fabric separates the wash stone and soil and prevents the loss of the soil. The wash stone will hold rain water and slowly infiltrate in into the ground, reducing the amount of pollutants and runoff. We planted our garden with Ginger Wine, American Witch-Hazel, Elderberry, Carolina Allspice, and American Beautyberry plants. 

Click here to read the Mountaineer article about this community project.

A rain garden is a shallow area in the landscape with water-tolerant, native plants and well-drained soils. Rain gardens collect rainwater from the streets or roofs and infiltrate it into the soil. They are effective in removing pollutants from stormwater runoff through absorption, infiltration, evapotranspiration, and microbial action. They also reduce the amount of stormwater runoff that goes into the receiving waters. 

Rain gardens are great for small areas, such as backyards, parking lots, and sidewalks. Advanced rain gardens have drainage systems and altered soils. They are called bioretention cells. Click here to learn more about rain gardens and how to build and maintain them.

                                            Pictures of the Waynesville Rain Garden Project

Rain Garden, initial condition

In the Works: 
Rain Garden Restoration, Public WorksRain Garden Restoration, Haywood Waterways, WCU                                   We are excited to see our Rain Garden in full bloom this Spring!

*          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          

French Drain at Waynesville Recreation Center (2022)

Development Services Department coordinated with the Public Works to extend the French drain in a disc golf area that seems to stay wet for a long time after rain. How does a French drain work? It provides a subsurface channel for rainwater to run through. It is a type of infiltration trench with piping. Water runs underground into a perforated pipe that is usually wrapped in a filter fabric and surrounded by a wash stone. Filter fabric and wash stone serve as a barrier and prevent the soil from clogging up the perforated pipe. Rainwater penetrates the soil and travels through the pipe away from the surface. Our French drain diverts excess rainwater into a nearby storm drain. 

French Drain Example French drains are very effective because they collect water along the entire surface of the drain! French Drain Way

Click the links below to learn more about French drains and how to install one yourself:

French Drain Systems: When You Need Them

French Drain Inspection

How to Install a French Drain

NC DEQ Stormwater Injection

Educational Resources

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines stormwater as a rainwater or melted snow that runs off streets, lawns, and other sites. When stormwater is absorbed into soil, it is filtered and ultimately replenishes aquifers or flows into streams and rivers.

Pet Waste Article by Haywood Waterways

Yard Waste Article by Haywood Waterways

Trash Article by Haywood Waterways

Trash Postcard

Key Stormwater Definitions 

Why is stormwater run-off an issue? 

Best Management Practices (BMP's) 

Waynesville Stormwater Ordinances 

EPA Stormwater Program

NC DEQ Stormwater Program 

WNC Stormwater Partnership 

Haywood Waterways Association- Public Education and Engagement 

Free NCDEQ Stormwater Webinars- great educational resource for general public, developers, property owners, municipal staff, and educators.

Water Cycle Glossary of Terms

Scroll down to our Educational Gallery section to access educational posters and postcards.