Illicit discharges are more than just the dumping of hazardous materials. They are any discharge that enters the City of Rockford's storm system that is not composed entirely of rainwater. The City's storm system is not just curbs, gutters and inlets. It's also driainageways, ditches, creeks and other area water flows during a rain. Waste that enters the City of Rockford's storm system does not get treated like sanitary waste. Once pollutants enter the storm system it goes directly to the river untreated.
The City of Rockford has specific requirements on what is allowed to be discharged into its storm system. While some things are allowed, provided certain criteria are met, i.e. de-chlorinated pool water, other discharges, such as those from industries, require permitting from the City and in some cases, the Illinois EPA.