Sewer Backup Prevention Grant

Program Overview

When the Village’s combined sewer system becomes overburdened during a large rain event, wastewater can flow back into a home from the public sewer main.  When this occurs, wastewater may enter the home through the lowest plumbing fixture, which is usually a floor drain or sink in the basement.  To reduce the risk of this happening, the Village of La Grange offers a Residential Sewer Backup Prevention Program (PDF) for single and two family homes.  

The Village has budgeted funds to assist single and two family homeowners with the cost of plumbing improvements to address sanitary sewer related backups. The program is administered on a “first come - first served” annual basis, beginning May 01 each year. The program provides 50% reimbursement of eligible costs, subject to a maximum reimbursement of $3,000 for backflow devices or $5,000 for overhead sewers.  Each property is eligible for a one-time grant capped at $5,000.  The maximum grant amount is based on the cost estimate provided in the application materials and the Village is not responsible for costs that may be incurred after the application is approved.  Permit fees for work funded through this program are waived.  The goal of the program is to encourage homeowners to improve their quality of life and enhance property values through the reduction of sanitary sewer backups.

Program Eligibility Requirements

Eligible Properties

Existing detached single family homes and two-family homes are eligible to participate in the program. If the property is a rental property, the application must be completed by the property owner. To be eligible for reimbursement, program participants must comply with all program requirements including the completion of all necessary application forms, building permits, and other documentation, and disconnection of any existing downspout or sump pump connections to the combined sewer system.

Ineligible Properties

Ineligible properties include new construction homes and homes located in the South Lyons Sanitary District. Homes in the South Lyons Sanitary District are not served by Village sewers; to determine if your property is located in the South Lyons Sanitary District, look up your property on this interactive map (LINK) or call Village Hall for assistance.

Eligible Expenses

  • Installation of overhead sewers
  • Installation of backflow prevention valve
  • Cost of trenching and concrete floor replacement associated with eligible work

Non-Eligible Expenses

  • Backup or flooding improvements made to commercial, industrial, or multi-family (greater than 2 family) buildings
  • Property improvements not associated with sanitary sewage backup protection (i.e. foundation crack sealing, footing drains, sump pumps, etc.)
  • Removal and replacement of basement walls and finishes
  • Use of materials or methods not meeting the requirements of Village specifications
  • Upgrading of electrical supply to accommodate sump pump or ejector pump
  • Battery back-up system for sump pump
  • Battery back-up alarm
  • Cost of disconnecting downspouts or sump pumps from the combined sewer system.
  • Restoration with grass seed or sod or other landscape work

Definitions

Overhead Sewer: An overhead sewer consists of an ejector pit, ejector pump, and backflow valve.  All plumbing drains in the basement are directed to the new ejector pit and pumped into the building sanitary service.  The sealed connection and backflow valve prevents backflow from discharging into the basement.

Check valve: A check valve is a one-way valve that allows fluid to flow in one direction and prevents backflow discharging into the basement from the sewer main.

Program Process

  1. Review the eligibility requirements for the program to confirm that your property qualifies and contact the Community Development Department with any questions.
  2. Obtain three written proposals from licensed plumbing contractors to perform the necessary corrective action. Contractors may have differing opinions (and fees) related to the means of solving a backup problem. 
  3. Select your preferred contractor.
  4. Submit completed application form (PDF), including copies of three proposals, and a building permit application (PDF) to Lesley Parent in the Community Development Department at lparent@lagrangeil.gov. Ensure your contractor is registered with the Village; a permit cannot be issued until the contractor has completed the registration process.
  5. Village staff will review the application for eligibility and review the building permit application for compliance with Village codes. Participation in the program is approved and funds are reserved at the time of permit issuance.  
  6. Pick up the approved permit.
  7. The plumber performs the work and calls for Village inspections as required by the permit approval letter. The disconnection of any existing sump pump or downspout connections to the Village combined sewer will be required at the time of inspection if they have not been completed yet.
  8. Pay the full amount of the plumber’s invoice upon completion of the work, in accordance with your agreement with the plumber.  
  9. Submit a completed reimbursement request form (PDF) consistent with the program participation approval provided at the time of permit issuance, along with proof of payment, W-9 (PDF), and any other required documentation as outlined in the form.

Grant Period

The program funding period is May 01 through April 30 annually. Once funds budgeted for a given year are fully obligated, no further applications will be accepted. When a grant is approved, work must be completed and a request for reimburemsent must be made within the same funding year.