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Stormwater Management Consensus Study Meeting

Storm Water Management Local Study

  • What: Stormwater Consensus Meeting
  • Where: Wilmette Public Library Auditorium
  • When: Tuesday, February 11th, 9 am to 1 pm
  • Participants: All League members are welcome

If you have never attended a LWV Consensus Meeting you will find the process fascinating. The program part is in three sections, each followed by an open discussion.

  • An introduction to how stormwater is managed in Wilmette -- where our water goes; why stormwater has become more problematic as we experience more frequent, intense storms; and why we need to consider watersheds not just village boundaries when we talk about stormwater issues.
  • A review of the regulatory codes and ordinances within our community as well as those from external entities that impact how stormwater is managed in Wilmette
  • A presentation of established and emerging best practices for stormwater management, followed by a discussion of how best to plan an educational component for our findings. The consensus part of the meeting is a moderated session based on a set of study questions. The objective is to try and reach consensus on the recommended path forward to address this growing problem. We anticipate the participation of League members from neighboring Leagues and welcome their input. Their comments during the discussion session are often germane to problems and solutions they have encountered ahead of us. Voting during the consensus session is limited to Wilmette League members.

Libby Bankoff, Nancy Canafax, Trudy Gibbs, Joel Kurzman, Trish Nealon, and Lali Watt make up the study group.

Liquid Assets: Learning About Water Infrastructure and Wilmette's Systems


The League of Women Voters of Wilmette, Wilmette Public Library, and Go Green Wilmette presented an abridged viewing of the film Liquid Assets, followed by a discussion of community and regional water management issues. Almost 40 people including State Senator Daniel Biss attended LWV Wilmette's Liquid Assets program on September 24 at Wilmette Library. The program raised community awareness about management of national and local water systems infrastructure.

Our program's format was a combined presentation of selected film clips from the documentary Liquid Assets followed by presentations from Wilmette's Director of Engineering Brigitte Mayerhofer and Nabil Quafisheh, Superintendent of Wilmette's Water Plant.

Penn State Public Broadcasting produced Liquid Assets as a public media and outreach initiative. The film outlines the public water supply's crucial roles in maintaining public health, public safety, and the economy, using examples from communities of all sizes and locations throughout the country, each with its own challenges. The audience viewed specific segments highlighting the value of water, the evolution of provision of safe drinking water and removal of waste and stormwater; management and rehabilitation of aging systems, and a section highlighting 21st century solutions for maintaining our water infrastructure. A common theme emerged: we need to care for our water resources.

How is all this relevant to our own community? Following the film, Brigitte Mayerhofer provided the audience with important information about Wilmette's sewer system.

Ms. Mayerhofer:

  • Explained the structure and function of Wilmette's systems. The Village has a combined sewer and stormwater system east of Ridge Road and separate storm and sewer systems west of Ridge Road.
  • Gave us a review of Wilmette's stormwater management plan.
  • Debunked myths about the locks and storm water in Wilmette.
  • Shared news of past and proposed sewer infrastructure investments.
  • Discussed some resources available to homeowners.

Ms.Mayerhofer noted that within our village issues vary by neighborhood based on specific geography and geology. The Village is planning community meetings for outreach and education purposes regarding stormwater.

Mr. Quafisheh showed an interactive DVD as he explained how water is obtained from Lake Michigan, treated, filtered, stored, and delivered to our homes as safe drinking water. He emphasized that the plant and all systems operate according to standards set by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The process begins with lake water intakes that reach out approximately one mile from the plant into the Lake Michigan. Water flows to the plant by gravity, where is undergoes a multistep process before it is ready to become our drinking water. Our plant produces drinking water for both Wilmette and Glenview (70% of the water that Wilmette produces is for Glenview; many of us did not know that!).

Finally the speakers welcomed audience questions and addressed a variety of broad and specific issues.

  • Relevant Resources

Interested in learning more? The film is available for check out at the Wilmette Public Library. Also, please see information on Liquid Assets film content, related resources, and video clips at

A reading list compiled by the Library is below..

  • Questions? Contact our speakers at: and

To see streaming video from Village of Wilmette on Wilmette's Sewers and Stormwater, click the link to the Wilmette's Website.

Village of Wilmette and Wilmette Park District

Streaming Video and Archived Video from Village of Wilmette

You can now watch streaming video of live or archived Village Board meetings, Zoning Board of Appeals and Park Board meetings. Click here for Village webpage.

The Board of Park Commissioners meets on the second Monday of each month at 7:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Village Hall, 1200 Wilmette Avenue. All meetings are open to the public.

It's the 150th Anniversary of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address