Livingston County will be closed on Monday, May 27th in honor of Memorial Day.

If calling for Emergency Flooding after regular business hours or on the weekend, please select Option #1 for the emergency alert system. During business hours, you will be directed to indicate if you are calling about an emergency. Staff will be notified immediately of emergencies. Non-emergency voicemails will be addressed the next business day. Please don’t use email for emergencies.

The Livingston County Drain Commissioner has maintenance jurisdiction on approximately 400 miles of open (ditch) and enclosed (pipe) drains. While this sounds impressive, county-maintained drainage represents only 2 – 3% of county drainage systems. Our Office employs a Drain Maintenance crew and owns a variety of equipment for drain related construction activities. Additional equipment is rented by us on an as-needed basis.

Types of Drain Projects

  • Maintenance Activities – May be performed by our Drain Maintenance Crew or may be subcontracted to a local contractor, depending on the project scope.
  • Petitioned Projects – Require the request of a local unit of government or the signatures of landowners on a petition to begin. Petitioned Projects involve the use of an engineer to draw construction plans and may require acquisition of easements as well as public hearings, or the use of contractors.

Injury or Property Damage Due to County Storm Drain System

The following references Public Act 222: An individual who has been injured or has suffered property damage as a result of a county storm drain system must provide written notice of the event within 45 days after the date the damage or injury was discovered. Written notice must include the following:
  • Name, address, and phone number of the claimant
  • Address of the affected property
  • Date of discovery of any property damages or physical injuries
  • Brief description of the claim
Failure to comply with the new reporting requirements will result in a denial of the claim, per Act 222 of Public Acts of 2001. 

Neighbor Disputes

Does my neighbor have the right to drain water onto my property?

Generally, between owners of higher and lower land, the higher land has a right or easement over the lower land to flow water only in its natural state. If the water flowing from the upper land to the lower land occurs in a natural state, the lower land has a duty to accept it. However, if the flowage is directed, increased, concentrated, or accelerated in any manner by the upper land, permission must be obtained from the lower land owner for flowage of water above and beyond the natural state. As every situation is different, you should seek the advice of an attorney if you have further questions. ​

Do I have the right to drain swales and wet areas on my property?

Generally, a person can drain water off of his property and onto another property but only in its natural state. Further, you may be required to obtain a permit from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality before some of the wet areas are drained. Also, you must obtain a permit before you can connect to a County drain or discharge water into a river or stream. You should seek the advice of both the Livingston County Drain Commissioner and an attorney prior to draining your property.​

Drain Commissioner
Brian Jonckheere

Brian Jonckheere
Drain Commissioner



(517) 546-0040


Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Closed County Holidays


2300 E Grand River Ave
Suite 105
Howell, MI 48843


(517) 545-9658