Rockville Staff Recognized for Efforts to Reduce Liability Claims

The City of Rockville did not pay a single dollar in liability claims due to sewer backups during the most recent fiscal year, after paying more than $94,000 in such claims just four years earlier.

The city also cut the number of claims filed by nearly half during Fiscal Year 2018, which ended June 30.

The 45 percent reduction in liability claims saves taxpayers money and is due in large part to Rockville’s Sewer Preventative Team, which meets monthly and includes representatives of the city’s engineering, operations and maintenance, environmental, geographic information systems, and safety and risk management divisions.

The success story has received regional attention, with city staff presenting how it was achieved during the Local Government Insurance Trust’s 31st Annual Meeting on Nov. 1 in Annapolis. The presentation team included safety and risk manager Marcus Odorizzi; deputy director of public works Judy Ding; GIS specialist Mike Onzay and operations maintenance superintendent Steve Sokol. LGIT members include 17 counties, 143 municipalities, 22 sponsored entities, the Maryland Municipal League and the Maryland Association of Counties.

Rockville actively seeks to limit sewer backups with rigorous preventive maintenance that includes high-velocity flushing, video inspection, root sawing, sonar system testing, grease inhibitors, root growth inhibitors, and lining or replacing piping.

To learn more about what the city does to prevent and, if necessary, respond to sewer backups, visit