Toogoodoo Creek Watershed Water Quality Grant


319 TOOGOODOO CREEK WATERSHED GRANT ENDS  in the Towns of Hollywood and Meggett - January 2016

Our Grant:                                                     

The Charleston Soil & Water Conservation District is at the end of a three-year grant in which The Charleston Conservation District worked hard to improve water quality in the Toogoodoo Creek Watershed.

In the last three years we have:                 

  • · Replaced 45 failing septic systems where harmful bacteria and viruses were polluting the watershed. 
  • Educated residents in workshops and festivals on how to properly take care of their new systems so they last for years to come.

  • · Held a Pasture Improvement & Management workshop for cattle and horse owners on how to improve pastures, protect the waterways from animal manure, and improve the health of the animals too.
  • · Participated in an oyster reef build in Toogoodoo Creek because oysters help improve water quality; Roxbury Park volunteers built a second reef near the park. Please visit Roxbury Park to see the Our Connected Coastal sign that  illustrates how your actions on land can impact water quality.                                                                                                                                                                                   

The Charleston Soil & Water Conservation District thanks our Grant Project Partners for their participation and contributions and our septic contractors for their excellent service:

· Berkeley Charleston Dorchester Council of Governments (BCDCOG)

· Charleston County

· Clemson Cooperative Extension

· Rural Mission

· South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SC DHEC)

· South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SC DNR)

· Town of Hollywood

· Town of Meggett

· Trident Technical College, St. Paul’s Parish Campus

· US Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service ( USDA NRCS)

· A-1 Septic Services

· B2 Unlimited, LLC

· Knight’s Septic Tank

This project was funded wholly or in part by the US EPA under a Section 319 Grant through The SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (SC DHEC).

319 Toogoodoo Grant Ends—District honors Septic Contractors and Department of Health and Environmental Control for their hard work  

     The Charleston Soil & Water Conservation District hosted the Annual Conservation Awards Recognition Dinner on  June 2, 2015 at the   Ft. Johnson DNR Marine Center Outdoor Classroom.  With the Toogoodoo Creek Watershed Grant coming to an end, the District chose to honor the septic contractors and DHEC consultants who have  helped the District for the past 8 years with our 319 Water Quality Grants in both the Sewee and Toogoodoo Watersheds.  The Charleston Soil & Water Conservation District would like to thank Septic Contractors, Harry and Cindy Wilson of A-1 Services, Sam Brown of B2 Unlimited, LLC,  Michael Knight and Brandon Stephens of Knight’s Septic Tank and our DHEC Consultant, Richard Threat, of the SC Department of Health & Environmental Control for their professional septic and conservation water quality services given to our commitment to reduce the bacteria levels in the creeks and water sources of the towns of Hollywood and Metggett.   Mr. Simpson, Along with Lisa Hajjar, Grant Project Manager, thanked them for the many hours of hard work that they devoted to these grants and for the their combined contributions to the improvement of homeowners lives in these watersheds, who were fortunate enough to have their failing septic tanks replaced through the use of 319 federal funds delegated for these watersheds.  THANK YOU to our grant partners and everyone who made this grant a success!  

2014 Grant Updates

Last year was a busy year for implementation of our Grant project in the Toogoodoo Creek Watershed. Many thanks are due to the work and support of our grant partners:  the towns of Hollywood and Meggett, Charleston County, BCD-COG, NRCS, SCDNR, TTTC St. Paul's Parish Campus, Clemson Extension, rural Mission, and our grant sponsor SCDHEC.  Our District Commissioners have been very hands-on as well.  The overall goal of the grant is to improve the water quality in the Toogoodoo Creek Watershed by reducing bacterial inputs, so that shellfish beds may be reopened to harvesting.  The main areas of focus include failing septic systems, oyster reef restoration, outreach education, and livestock management for improved water quality.

During 2014, the District accomplished the following activities and best practices:

  • Replaced 30 failing septic systems using a bid process and three licensed contractors (A-1 Septic, B2 Unlimited, and Knights Septic) on behalf of the homeowners who had applied.  By summer, 7 more systems will be replaced.  Used the Ultrashallow System design - a great improvement over the mostly 30+year old systems that had long ceased to effectiviely treat wastewater.  No more back-ups in the home or yard for many satisfied homeowners!  Educated over 30 residents on proper operation and maintenance in septic homeowner education workshops as a prerequisite for receiving new septic systems.
  • Developed a "Can the Grease" campaign with 600 custom can lid covers and informational postcards as a way for homeowners to keep grease out of their septic systems and sewer lines.
  • Installed a new oyster reef in Toogoodoo Creek as directed by SCDNR, SCORE staff and with District, community, grant partner, and family volunteers.  Oyster shells were first bagged in March to "cure" before the June installation.  Once mature, the reef will filter thousands of gallons of water each hour!
  • Outreach to area schools with EnviroScape model demonstrations, and a poster and essay contest on "Where Does Your Water Shed!"
  • Promoted the Grant at Hollywood's Spring Festival, SEWE, Charleston County Earth Day, and to Hollywood Town Council.
  • Purchased an "Our Connected Coast Sign" for installation by the Town of Meggett at their beautiful new Roxbury Park; visitors will learn how human activities at home and on the water can impact water quality.
  • Initiated efforts to enlist landowners with livestock to participate in a cost-share agreement to install fencing for keeping animals out of the watershed creeks.  With plans for an Agricultural Workshop with Clemson Extension and NRCS, we hope to make this happen in 2015.  (OUR FINAL UPDATE WILL COME AT THE END OF 2015!)
ToogoodooCreekWatershedPoster_DEC2013.pdf ToogoodooCreekWatershedPoster_DEC2013.pdf
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  Implementation of a Toogoodoo Creek Watershed-Based Plan to Address Fecal Coliform Bacteria through Targeted Nonpoint Source Management 

The goal of this project will be to produce significant reductions in the fecal coliform bacteria levels measured in all three monitoring stations in order to meet water quality standards for consumption of shellfish. This will be accomplished through the watershed-wide implementation of an array of stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) combined with a focused education and outreach campaign. These BMPs will include agricultural BMPs, such as livestock exclusion fencing, watering facilities, heavy use areas, and pasture and nutrient management plans, as well as residential BMPs that will include a septic system evaluation and rehabilitation program, preventative pumping, and possible hook ups to sewer. Pet waste and other residential sources will be addressed primarily through educational outreach efforts. A key feature of this project will be developing a close partnership  with local stakeholders, some of whom live in the watershed and who are motivated to achieve results. Community acceptance, and the voluntary adoption and implementation of best management practices is critical for the ultimate restoration of this water resource.  We hope to improve waer qualtiy so that the shellfish beds in Toogoodoo and Swinton Creeks can be reopened for harvesting and be saft to eat.

Our partners include Charleston County, the towns of Hollywood and Meggett, the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments, the Rural Mission, Clemson University, the Natural Resource Conservation Service, and the SC Department of Natural Resources.    

This project is funded by EPA through DHEC and runs from January 2013 to January 2016.

 See the above attached Toogoodoo Watershed Poster for more information on the grant.

 Click here for a Google map of the Toogoodoo Creek Watershed.



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