We’ve talked about a wide range of topics here on My Southborough, but I don’t believe dog poop has ever been among them. That all changes today.
Earlier this year, a contractor hired to clean out storm drains around town made a most unwelcome discovery: bags of dog feces had been dumped down several drains. The waste, found in three catch basins on Overlook Drive, was wrapped in blue plastic bags, Public Health Director Paul Pisinski told the Board of Health earlier this week.
DPW Superintendent Karen Galligan said most of the town’s 1,500 storm drains empty into local streams or wetlands that eventually flow into the Sudbury Reservoir or the Sudbury River. That means any contaminants in the storm drains will eventually make it into the waterways.
Pisinski told the Board of Health town bylaw prohibits dumping of pollutants or any “non-stormwater discharge” into catch basins. Violations are punishable by fines, civil action, or even criminal prosecution, according to the bylaw.
In this case, Pisinski said they would start with a letter to residents on Overlook to let them know about the bylaw and to encourage them to dispose of dog waste appropriately.
“It’s commendable that they’re picking up the waste,” Pisinski said. “But a catch basin is not a receptacle for that purpose.”
Board of Health Chairman Louis Fazen III agreed, saying the board wants to encourage dog owners to pick up after their pets because waste left on the ground eventually makes its way into catch basins and the water system, as well.
So what is the best way to dispose of dog waste? Pisinski says double-bag it, and bring it to the Transfer Station.