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2023 MMSD Annual Performance Report

03/27/24 08:40:am


In 2023, MMSD delivered a range of noteworthy projects and programs to support a more vibrant, resilient, and sustainable region in 2023 and further demonstrated our organizations commitment to a healthy Milwaukee region and a cleaner Lake Michigan.

This 2023 Annual Performance Report serves as the intermediary report under the 2022-2024 Strategic Plan and demonstrates that MMSD continues to practice the mission, vision, and values outlined in this Plan as the District strives to achieve the goals we set in our 2035 Vision. We are proud of all that we accomplished to maintain a strong
financial position, reinvest in our infrastructure, invest in sustainability programs, facilitate watershed cooperation, promote community engagement, plan for future workforce needs, and foster interagency collaborations.

I am pleased to report major progress on Area of Concern (AOC) projects for the Milwaukee Estuary, an integral part of the Milwaukee region’s economy and environment. This past year saw historic investment in the cleanup of the region with the announcement of federal funding for the foundational AOC project, the dredged material management facility (DMMF). This project is a result of a partnership between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and five non-federal sponsors, including MMSD. This is the EPA’s largest investment in Great Lakes cleanup efforts.

The DMMF is a storage facility that will permanently house polluted sediment from legacy industrial pollution that impacts the vitality of the Milwaukee Estuary. In 2023, MMSD completed the engineering design for the DMMF and awarded its construction contract, which came in $39.5 million under the estimated budget. DMMF construction will begin in the spring of 2024.

Area for the future Dredged Material Management Facility project for the Area of Concern clean-up in Milwaukee.

Project site for the Dredged Material Management Facility (DMMF) in the Milwaukee harbor.

Kletzsch Dam Fish Passage Before Opening in 2023

Another AOC project focused on the installation of the Kletzsch Dam Fish Passage which was completed in 2023. This EPA funded project opened 54 miles of waterway for fish to spawn and reproduce by creating a fish passage that bypasses the Kletzsch Dam. These projects affirm our commitment to leading on investing, restoring, and sustaining the health of the Milwaukee region and its waterways.

Interagency and intergovernmental partnerships and collaborations are important for coordinating projects with significant regional impacts. MMSD provided millions of dollars in partnership funding to municipalities and local organizations to improve waterway health, increase green infrastructure implementation, and reduce inflow and infiltration to the water reclamation system.

The Greenseams® Program, which preserves critical floodplain areas, saw increased participation in 2023 and now has acquired over 5,000 acres since 2001.

The Private Property Infiltration and Inflow Reduction Program addresses the removal of infiltrating water in the sewer system and the work completed in 2023 increased total gallons removed to nearly 34 million annually. As a part of this program, the MMSD Pipe Check initiative saw a $325,000 investment for homeowners in 11 municipalities to further reduce excess clear water infiltration.

I encourage you to read further in this report and learn more about MMSD’s achievements over the past year and how its goals drive the region towards continued success. As always, we welcome your feedback.

Be Safe.  Be Understanding.  Be Kind.

Kevin L. Shafer, P.E.
Executive Director - Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District