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To return clean water to the environment means more than treating wastewater from households. We pay special attention to wastewater from industrial and commercial users.

WSSC Water has been regulating non-domestic wastewater discharges to its sanitary sewer system since 1925. Now known as the Industrial Discharge Control Program, this pretreatment program was approved by the Environmental Protection Agency in 1983 and has since been recognized nationally by the EPA as an "Outstanding Pretreatment Program."

The objectives of the Industrial Discharge Control Program are to:

  • Prevent the introduction of pollutants that interfere with operation of WSSC Water's water resource recovery facilities
  • Prevent the introduction of pollutants that pass through or are incompatible with WSSC Water's water resource recovery facilities
  • Improve opportunities to recycle and reclaim municipal and industrial wastewater and sludge
  • Protect the health and safety of the general public and WSSC Water's workers

The Program meets its objectives by issuing permits for Significant Industrial Users, performing routine monitoring of SIUs and routinely conducting comprehensive facility inspections.

1925
WSSC Water began regulating the disposal of non-domestic waste to the sanitary sewer system.
1972
The Federal Clean Water Act was established to restore and preserve our nation's waterways by eliminating discharges of pollutants.

Permitting program

Under the program, WSSC Water regulates Significant Industrial Users, specific zero dischargers, temporary dischargers of metered wastewater, and waste haulers. All SIUs must apply for a WSSC Discharge Authorization Permit by completing a WSSC Water Discharge Authorization Permit Application. Industrial Users that are uncertain of their SIU status may complete an Industrial Waste Survey. WSSC Water will review the survey and make a determination on your industry's status. SIU discharge permits are effective for four years.

New permit fees and renewal permit fees are as follows:

(Fees are in effect through June 30, 2022)

Annual Program Fee

Specific industrial users that discharge non-domestic waste to the sanitary sewer system will share part of the cost of WSSC Water's administration of the program. The fee schedule takes into account the characteristics and volume of the non-domestic wastes which may be discharged, and the level of effort required to ensure that non-domestic users remain in compliance with WSSC Water and Federal Standards. This table shows the 2021-2022 fee schedule:

Category   Description Annual Fee
1a. Industrial Users subject to Categorical Pretreatment Standards (less than 5,000 gallons per day) $6,153.00
1b. Industrial Users subject to Categorical Pretreatment Standards (greater than 5,000 gallons per day) $9,428.00
1c. Non-Discharging Categorical Industries   $1,658.00
2a. Significant Industrial User (less than 25,000 gallons per day) $6,153.00
2b. Significant Industrial User (greater than 25,000 gallons per day) $9,428.00
  Late Payment Charge   5% of fee


Special Note To Landlords

If you are the owner of a property served by water/sewer connection(s) and have tenants who discharge non-domestic waste into the sewerage system, your bill may include a yearly fee for tenants or sources of non-domestic waste. A breakdown of tenant names and associated fees will be provided upon written request by any landlord.

If you have questions about the Industrial Discharge Control Program or annual fee, call us at 301-206-8841 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday) or email us at industrialdischargecontrol@wsscwater.com.

Dental Office Dental Amalgam Reporting Requirements

The federal Environmental Protection Agency has issued Effluent Guidelines that require dental offices to operate an amalgam separator to prevent mercury-containing amalgam from reaching the sanitary sewer. For more information see the EPA's Dental Effluent Guidelines website. Existing and new sources are required to submit a one-time compliance report to their pretreatment Control Authority.

WSSC Water is the delegated Control Authority for all dentist offices in our Service Area. Dentist offices that have not already completed the form, have changed their practices, or are new to the WSSC Water Service Area must complete a WSSC Water One-Time Dental Amalgam Compliance Report and mail the original copy to WSSC Water at the address included on the last page of the Report.

Waste Haulers

Waste Haulers can apply for a permit by completing a Waste Hauler Permit Application.

Permits are effective for one year (July 1, 2021 - June 30, 2022) and the fee is based on vehicle capacity:

  • 1-49 gallons: $257.00/vehicle
  • 50-799 gallons: $6,136.00/vehicle
  • 800-2,999 gallons: $17,501.00/vehicle
  • 3,000 gallons and up: $38,229.00/vehicle
  • Zero Discharge Permit: $143.00/vehicle*
  • Transfer and/or Replacement Permit Sticker: $143.00/vehicle

*Zero discharge permits are only for Waste Haulers that clean grease interceptors in the WSSC Water service area but who dispose of this waste at a outside our jurisdiction. A Zero Discharge Permit is not an authorization to discharge at WSSC Water's disposal site.

To obtain a Waste Hauler Permit, the following information is required:

  • Health Department permits: If your business will operate a vehicle in Montgomery and/or Prince George’s Counties, you MUST have copies of current Prince George's and/or Montgomery County Health Department permits (not business licenses) for each of the vehicles permitted. For each vehicle, there must be a corresponding county health department certificate associated with that vehicle (e.g. through license plate or Vehicle Identification Number). WSSC Water will not accept inspection certificates, only final Health Department permits/licenses. This applies whether the application is for a Waste Hauler discharge permit or a Zero Discharge permit.
    • For Montgomery County license contact:
      Department of Permitting Services - Well and Septic Section
      Email: Heidi.benham@montgomerycountymd.gov
      General phone: 240-777-0311
    • For Prince George’s County permit contact:
      Environmental Engineering Program
      Email: kaclare@co.pg.md.us
      General Phone 301-883-7681
  • Motor vehicle registrations: WSSC Water requires a copy of each vehicle’s current registration. License plate numbers and VIN must match official vehicle registrations. This applies whether the application is for a Waste Hauler discharge permit or a Zero Discharge permit.
  • Sanitizing Agents: Safety Data Sheet or manufacturer’s product information sheet for your portable toilet sanitizers MUST be included with application.
  • Mobile Food Service vehicles: For each county in which your business plans to operate, a copy of the current Mobile Food Service License (or equivalent) and the Site-Specific Point-of-Sale License (or equivalent) must be submitted for each vehicle.
  • A check or money order made out to WSSC Water for the exact amount for all permit fees.

Applications can be mailed or hand-carried to:

Permit Services
14501 Sweitzer Lane - Lobby Level
Laurel, MD 20707

The Permit Services hours of operation are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday (except holidays) from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (closed 12:00 p.m. -1:00 p.m.); Wednesday (except holidays), 7:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

All materials must be included with your application or WSSC Water will not be able to process the application and issue a permit. Any questions, email OneStopShop@wsscwater.com or call 301-206-4003.

Permitted waste haulers can request grease and/or septage manifest forms by email at OneStopShop@wsscwater.com or by calling 301-206-4003.

Inspections, monitoring and enforcement

The Industrial Discharge Control Program's Inspection and Monitoring Unit regulates approximately 50 Significant Industrial Users, which are inspected annually for compliance with federal and local discharge limitations.

Violations of federal, state and local discharge limitations and requirements can trigger enforcement action as outlined in the Program's Enforcement Response Plan.

Public Notice of the Significant Industrial User Pollution Violation(s)

In accordance with the General Pretreatment Regulations (40 CFR Part 403), the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC Water) administers the Industrial Discharge Control Program to regulate the discharge of pollutants to the sanitary sewers in Prince George's and Montgomery counties. The program’s purpose is to protect the environment, prevent interference of wastewater operations, prevent the pass-through of pollutants into local waterways, and ensure the quality of treatment plant sludge.

During the 2021 evaluation period (October 2020–December 2021), the following industrial users were in significant noncompliance (SNC), as defined in 40 CFR 403.8(f)(2)(viii), with the United States Environmental Protection Agency's National Pretreatment Standards and/or WSSC Water's Industrial and Special Waste Regulations:

Significant Industrial User Pollution Violation(s) Calendar Year 2021

Significant Industrial User Significant Noncompliance
ATK Space Systems LLC
11310/11320 Frederick Avenue,
Beltsville, MD 20705
Failure to notify WSSC Water of process modification that led to the discharge of ancillary metal finishing categorical process wastewater. This constitutes SNC for failure to notify WSSC Water of modifications to processes during the July 2021 – December 2021 evaluation period. Enforcement actions included a Notice of Violation (NOV) and a Compliance Directive. The industry has returned to compliance with their Zero Discharge Permit.
Cintas Corporation
1769 Brightseat Road,
Landover, MD 20785
Failure to notify WSSC Water within 24 hours of becoming aware of a violation. This constitutes SNC for failure to accurately report noncompliance during the July 2021 – December 2021 evaluation period. Enforcement Actions included an NOV and a Compliance Directive.
Eaton Corporation
11642 Old Baltimore Pike,
Beltsville, MD 20705
Failure to notify WSSC Water within 24 hours of becoming aware of a violation. This constitutes SNC for failure to accurately report noncompliance during the July 2021 – December 2021 evaluation period. Enforcement actions included a NOV and a Compliance Directive.
Oaks Sanitary Landfill
6001 Olney – Laytonsville Road,
Laytonsville, MD 20760
Failure to notify WSSC Water within 24 hours of becoming aware of a violation. This constitutes SNC for failure to accurately report noncompliance during the October 2020 – March 2021 evaluation period. Enforcement action included a NOV.
Last Modified: May 16, 2022, 2:44 pm EDT