Chapter 14.36
ILLEGAL DISCHARGES TO STORMWATER SYSTEM AND WATERCOURSES

Sections:

14.36.010    Purpose and intent.

14.36.020    Definitions.

14.36.030    Applicability.

14.36.040    Responsibility for administration.

14.36.050    Severability.

14.36.060    Ultimate responsibility.

14.36.070    Discharge prohibitions.

14.36.080    Suspension of water service, sanitary sewer service and municipal separate storm sewer system access.

14.36.090    Industrial or construction activity discharges.

14.36.100    Monitoring of discharges.

14.36.110    Requirement to prevent, control, and reduce stormwater pollutants by the use of BMPs.

14.36.120    Watercourse protection.

14.36.130    Notification of spills.

14.36.010 Purpose and intent.

The purposes of this chapter are:

(1) To provide for the health, safety, and general welfare of the citizens of the city of Washougal, Washington, through the regulation of nonstormwater discharges to the storm drainage system to the maximum extent practicable as required by federal and state law.

(2) To establish methods for controlling the introduction of pollutants into the municipal separate storm sewer system in order to comply with the requirements of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit process. Specifically:

(a) To regulate the contribution of pollutants to the municipal separate storm sewer system by stormwater discharges from any user.

(b) To prohibit illicit connections and illegal discharges to the city’s municipal separate storm sewer system.

(c) To define the city’s legal authority to carry out all inspection, surveillance and monitoring necessary to effectuate said purposes.

(3) To protect and enhance water quality and aquatic wildlife and its habitat by preventing harmful discharges to local watercourses. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.020 Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the following shall mean:

(1) “Best management practices (BMPs)” means schedules of activities, prohibitions of practices, general good housekeeping practices, pollution prevention and educational practices, maintenance procedures, and other management practices to prevent or reduce the discharge of pollutants directly or indirectly to stormwater, receiving waters, or stormwater conveyance systems. BMPs also include treatment practices, operating procedures, and practices to control site runoff, spillage or leaks, sludge or water disposal, or drainage from raw materials storage.

(2) “City” means the city of Washougal, Washington.

(3) “Clean Water Act” means the federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 USC 1251 et seq.), and any subsequent amendments thereto.

(4) “Director” means the city of Washougal public works director and/or designees.

(5) “Hazardous materials” means any material, including any substance, waste, or combination thereof, which because of its quantity, concentration, or physical, chemical, or infectious characteristics may cause, or significantly contribute to, a substantial present or potential hazard to human health, safety, property or the environment when improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of, or otherwise managed.

(6) “Illegal discharge” means any direct or indirect nonstormwater discharge to the city’s storm drain system, except as expressly exempted by this chapter.

(7) “Illicit connections” means either: (a) any drain or conveyance, whether on the surface or subsurface, which allows an illegal discharge to enter the city’s storm drain system, watercourse or waterbody, including but not limited to conveyances allowing any nonstormwater discharge such as sewage, process wastewater, and wash water to enter the storm drain system and any connections thereto from indoor drains and sinks, regardless of whether said drain or connection was previously allowed, permitted, or approved by the city of Washougal; or (b) any drain or conveyance connected from a commercial or industrial land use to the storm drain system which has not been documented in plans, maps, or equivalent records and approved by the city.

(8) “Industrial activity” means activities subject to NPDES industrial permits as defined in 40 CFR 122.26(b)(14).

(9) “Municipal separate storm sewer system” means a conveyance or system of conveyances (including roads with drainage systems, municipal streets, catch basins, curbs, gutters, ditches, manmade channels, or storm drains):

(a) Owned or operated by a municipal corporation or other public entity with jurisdiction over management and discharge of stormwater and which discharges to surface waters of the state;

(b) Designed or used for collecting or conveying stormwater;

(c) Which is not part of a publicly owned treatment works (POTW). “POTW” means any device or system used in treatment of municipal sewage or industrial wastes of a liquid nature which is publicly owned; and

(d) Which is not a combined sewer. “Combined sewer” means a system that collects sanitary sewage, industrial wastewater and stormwater in a single sewer system.

(10) “National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater discharge permit” means a permit issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (or by the state under authority delegated pursuant to 33 USC 1342(b)) that authorizes the discharge of pollutants to waters of the United States, whether the permit is applicable on an individual, group, or general area-wide basis.

(11) “Nonstormwater discharge” means any discharge to the storm drain system that is not composed entirely of stormwater.

(12) “Person” means any individual, association, organization, partnership, firm, corporation or other entity recognized by law and acting as either the owner of a premises or as the owner’s agent.

(13) “Pollutant” means anything which causes or contributes to pollution. Pollutants may include, but are not limited to: paints, varnishes, and solvents; oil and other automotive fluids; nonhazardous liquid and solid wastes and yard wastes; refuse, rubbish, garbage, litter, or other discarded or abandoned objects and accumulations, so that same may cause or contribute to pollution; floatables; pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers; hazardous substances and wastes; sewage, fecal coliform and pathogens; dissolved and particulate metals; animal wastes; wastes and residues that result from constructing a building or structure; and noxious or offensive matter of any kind.

(14) “Premises” means any building, lot, parcel of land, or portion of land, whether improved or unimproved, including adjacent sidewalks and parking strips.

(15) “Storm drainage system” means publicly owned facilities, including the city’s municipal separate storm sewer system, by which stormwater is collected and/or conveyed, including but not limited to any roads with drainage systems, municipal streets, gutters, curbs, inlets, piped storm drains, pumping facilities, retention and detention basins, natural and human-made or altered drainage channels, reservoirs, and other drainage structures.

(16) “Stormwater” means any surface flow, runoff, and drainage consisting entirely of water from any form of natural precipitation and resulting from such precipitation.

(17) “Stormwater facility” means a constructed component of a stormwater drainage system, designed or constructed to perform a particular function or multiple functions. Stormwater facilities include but are not limited to swales, detention ponds, retention ponds, constructed wetlands, infiltration devices, oil/water separators, biofiltration swales and LID facilities as defined in the Washougal Engineering Standards.

(18) “Stormwater pollution prevention plan” means a document which describes the best management practices and activities to be implemented by a person to identify sources of pollution or contamination at a premises and the actions to eliminate or reduce pollutant discharges to stormwater, stormwater conveyance systems, and/or receiving waters to the maximum extent practicable.

(19) “Wastewater” means any water or other liquid, other than uncontaminated stormwater, discharged from a premises.

(20) “Waterbody” means any landscape feature comprising any body of water, whether standing or flowing, including, but not limited to, Puget Sound, lakes, ponds, rivers, streams or creeks.

(21) “Watercourse” means a waterbody consisting of a natural or artificial channel through which water flows. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.030 Applicability.

This chapter shall apply to all nonstormwater discharges entering the storm drain system generated on any developed or undeveloped lands, unless explicitly exempted by the city. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.040 Responsibility for administration.

The public works director shall administer, implement, and enforce the provisions of this chapter. Any powers granted or duties imposed upon the director may be delegated in writing by the director to persons or entities acting in the beneficial interest of or in the employ of the city. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.050 Severability.

The provisions of this chapter are hereby declared to be severable. If any provision, clause, sentence, or paragraph of this chapter or the application thereof to any person, establishment, or circumstances shall be held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect the other provisions or application of this chapter. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.060 Ultimate responsibility.

The standards set forth herein and promulgated pursuant to this chapter represent minimum standards. Compliance by any person with the standards established under this chapter does not relieve any person from any responsibility or obligation imposed pursuant to any other local, state or federal regulation. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.070 Discharge prohibitions.

(1) Prohibition of Illegal Discharges. No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged into the municipal storm drain system or any watercourse any materials (including but not limited to pollutants or waters containing any pollutants that cause or contribute to a violation of applicable water quality standards) other than stormwater. Contaminants include but are not limited to the following:

(a) Trash or debris;

(b) Construction materials;

(c) Petroleum products including but not limited to oil, gasoline, grease, fuel oil and heating oil;

(d) Antifreeze and other automotive products;

(e) Metals in either particulate or dissolved form;

(f) Flammable or explosive materials;

(g) Radioactive material;

(h) Batteries;

(i) Acids, alkalis, or bases;

(j) Paints, stains, resins, lacquers, or varnishes;

(k) Degreasers and/or solvents;

(l) Drain cleaners;

(m) Pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers;

(n) Steam cleaning wastes;

(o) Soaps, detergents, or ammonia;

(p) Swimming pool or spa filter backwash;

(q) Swimming pool or spa cleaning waste water;

(r) Chlorine, bromine, or other disinfectants;

(s) Heated water;

(t) Domestic animal wastes;

(u) Sewage;

(v) Recreational vehicle waste;

(w) Animal carcasses;

(x) Food wastes;

(y) Bark and other fibrous materials;

(z) Lawn clippings, leaves, or branches;

(aa) Silt, sediment, concrete, cement or gravel;

(bb) Dyes (except as described below under “Permissible Discharges”);

(cc) Chemicals, including suspected metals, not normally found in uncontaminated water;

(dd) Any other process-associated discharge except as otherwise allowed in this section;

(ee) Any hazardous material or waste not listed above.

(2) Permissible Discharges. The following types of discharges shall not be considered illegal discharges for the purposes of this chapter unless the director determines that the type of discharge, whether singly or in combination with others, is causing or is likely to cause pollution of surface water or groundwater:

(a) Uncontaminated water from crawl space pumps, footing drains, or foundation drains;

(b) Materials placed as part of an approved habitat restoration or bank stabilization project;

(c) Natural uncontaminated surface water, springs or groundwater;

(d) Flows from riparian habitats and wetlands;

(e) Common practices for water well disinfection;

(f) Discharges resulting from diffuse or ubiquitous sources such as atmospheric deposition;

(g) Discharges resulting from dye testing authorized by the director;

(h) Discharges which result from emergency response activities or other actions that must be undertaken immediately or within a time too short to allow full compliance with this chapter so as to avoid an imminent threat to public health or safety. The director may further define qualifying activities in administrative guidance. The person responsible for said emergency response activities shall take all necessary steps to ensure that the discharges resulting from such activities are minimized and ensure that future incidents are prevented to the greatest extent possible;

(i) Air conditioning condensation;

(j) Irrigation water from agricultural sources that is commingled with urban stormwater;

(k) Discharges permitted under an NPDES permit, waiver, or waste discharge order issued to the discharger and administered under the authority of the Federal Environmental Protection Agency; provided, that the discharger is in full compliance with all requirements of the permit, waiver, or order and other applicable laws and regulations; and provided, that written approval from the director has been granted for any discharge to the storm drain system;

(l) Other water sources not containing pollutants;

(m) Other types of discharges as determined in advance by the director.

(3) Conditional Discharges. The following types of discharges shall not be considered illegal discharges for the purposes of this chapter if they meet the stated conditions, unless the director determines that the type of discharge, whether singly or in combination with others, is causing or is likely to cause pollution of surface water or groundwater:

(a) Potable water, including water from water line flushing, hyperchlorinated water line flushing, fire hydrant system flushing, and pipeline hydrostatic test water. Planned discharges shall be dechlorinated to a concentration of 0.1 ppm or less, pH-adjusted if necessary and in volumes and velocities controlled to prevent resuspension of sediments in the stormwater system;

(b) Lawn watering and other irrigation runoff are permitted but shall be minimized;

(c) Dechlorinated swimming pool discharges. These discharges shall be dechlorinated to a concentration of 0.1 ppm or less, pH-adjusted and reoxygenized if necessary and in volumes and velocities controlled to prevent resuspension of sediments in the stormwater system. Discharges shall be thermally controlled to prevent an increase in temperature of the receiving water;

(d) Street and sidewalk wash water, water used to control dust, and routine external building wash-down that does not use detergents are permitted if the amount of street wash and dust control water used is minimized. At active construction sites, street sweeping must be performed prior to washing the street;

(e) Nonstormwater discharges covered by another NPDES permit; provided, that the discharger is in full compliance with all requirements of the permit, waiver, or order and other applicable laws and regulations; and provided, that written approval has been granted for any discharge to the storm drain system;

(f) Other nonstormwater discharges. The discharges shall be in compliance with the requirements of a stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP), reviewed and approved by the city, which addresses control of such discharges by applying AKART to prevent contaminants from entering surface or ground water.

(4) Prohibition of Illicit Connections.

(a) The construction, use, maintenance or continued existence of illicit connections to the storm drain system is prohibited.

(b) This prohibition expressly includes, without limitation, illicit connections made in the past, regardless of whether the connection was permissible under law or practices applicable or prevailing at the time of connection.

(c) Anybody is considered to be in violation of this chapter if the person connects a line conveying sewage to the municipal separate storm sewer system, or allows such a connection to continue. (Ord. 1850 § 1 (Exh. A), 2018; Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.080 Suspension of water service, sanitary sewer service and municipal separate storm sewer system access.

(1) Suspension Due to Illegal Discharges in Emergency Situations. The director may, without prior notice, suspend water service, sanitary sewer service and/or municipal separate storm sewer system discharge access to a person when such suspension is necessary to stop an actual or threatened discharge which presents or may present imminent and substantial danger to the environment, or to the health or welfare of persons, or to the municipal separate storm sewer system or waters of the state of Washington. If the violator fails to comply with an emergency suspension order, the director may take such steps as deemed necessary to prevent or minimize damage to the municipal separate storm sewer system or waters of the state of Washington, or to minimize danger to persons.

(2) Suspension Due to the Detection of Illegal Discharge. Any person discharging to the municipal separate storm sewer system in violation of this chapter may have his/her water service, sanitary sewer service and/or municipal separate storm sewer system access terminated if such termination would abate or reduce an illegal discharge. The director will notify a violator of the proposed termination of its municipal separate storm sewer system access. The violator may petition the director for a reconsideration and hearing as provided in this chapter.

(3) Unauthorized Reinstatement. Anybody commits an offense and violates this chapter if the person reinstates municipal separate storm sewer system access to premises terminated pursuant to this section, without the prior approval of the director. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.090 Industrial or construction activity discharges.

Any person or activity subject to an NPDES stormwater discharge permit, waiver, or waste discharge order issued to the discharger and administered under the authority of the federal Environmental Protection Agency shall comply with all provisions of such permit. Proof of compliance with said permit may be required in a form acceptable to the city prior to allowing discharges to the municipal separate storm sewer system. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.100 Monitoring of discharges.

(1) Applicability. This section applies to all facilities that have stormwater discharges associated with industrial or commercial activity, including but not limited to construction activity.

(2) Access to Facilities.

(a) The city shall be permitted to enter and inspect facilities subject to regulation under this chapter as often as may be necessary to determine compliance with this chapter. If a discharger has security measures in force which require proper identification and clearance before entry into its premises, the discharger shall make the necessary arrangements to allow access to representatives of the director.

(b) Premises owners, occupiers and their agents shall allow the city ready access to all parts of the premises for the purposes of inspection, sampling, examination and copying of records that must be kept under the conditions of an NPDES permit to discharge stormwater, and the performance of any additional duties as defined by state and federal law.

(c) The city shall have the right to install on any permitted premises such devices as are necessary in the opinion of the director to conduct monitoring and/or sampling of the premises’ stormwater discharge.

(d) The city has the right to require the discharger to install monitoring equipment as necessary. The premises’ sampling and monitoring equipment shall be maintained at all times in a safe and proper operating condition by the discharger at its own expense. All devices used to measure stormwater flow and quality shall be calibrated to ensure their accuracy.

(e) Any temporary or permanent obstruction to safe and easy access to the premises to be inspected and/or sampled shall be promptly removed by the operator at the written or oral request of the director. The costs of clearing such access shall be borne by the operator.

(f) Unreasonable delays in allowing the city access to a permitted premises are violations of a stormwater discharge permit and of this chapter. A person who is the owner or operator of a premises with an NPDES permit to discharge stormwater associated with industrial activity commits an offense and violates this chapter if the person denies the city reasonable access to the permitted premises for the purpose of conducting any activity authorized or required by this chapter.

(g) If the director has been refused access to any part of the premises from which stormwater is discharged, and is able to demonstrate probable cause to believe that there may be a violation of this chapter, or that there is a need to inspect and/or sample as part of a routine inspection and sampling program designed to verify compliance with this chapter or any order issued hereunder, or to protect the overall public health, safety, and welfare of the community, then the director may seek issuance of a search warrant from any court of competent jurisdiction.

(h) In addition, the director may suspend water, sanitary sewer and/or storm drain access or access to any party refusing to provide or delaying access. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.110 Requirement to prevent, control, and reduce stormwater pollutants by the use of BMPs.

The city has adopted requirements identifying best management practices for any activity, operation, or facility which may cause or contribute to pollution or contamination of stormwater, the storm drain system, or waters of the United States.

The owner or operator of a commercial or industrial establishment shall provide, at its own expense, reasonable protection from accidental discharge of prohibited materials or other wastes into the municipal storm drain system or watercourses through the use of these structural and nonstructural BMPs. Further, any person responsible for a premises which is, or may be, the source of an illegal discharge, may be required to implement, at said person’s expense, additional structural and nonstructural BMPs to prevent the further discharge of pollutants to the municipal separate storm sewer system. Compliance with all terms and conditions of a valid NPDES permit authorizing the discharge of stormwater associated with industrial activity shall be deemed compliance with the provisions of this section. These BMPs shall be part of a stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) as necessary for compliance with requirements of the NPDES permit.

The owner or operator of a stormwater facility shall maintain, at its own expense, all facility functions in accordance with the maintenance manual associated with said facility. If no maintenance manual is known to exist, the latest version of Clark County’s “Stormwater Facility Maintenance Manual” shall be utilized. Any discharges from an unmaintained stormwater facility shall be considered illegal discharges and punishable in accordance with this chapter. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.120 Watercourse protection.

Every person owning property through which a watercourse passes, or such person’s lessee, shall not pollute, contaminate, introduce new vegetation into, or significantly retard the flow of water through the watercourse, and must comply with all critical areas protection requirements established in Chapter 16.04 WMC. In addition, the owner or lessee shall maintain existing privately owned structures within or adjacent to a watercourse, in a manner that such structures will not become a hazard to the use, function, or physical integrity of the watercourse. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)

14.36.130 Notification of spills.

Notwithstanding other requirements of law, as soon as any person responsible for a premises or operation, or responsible for emergency response for a premises or operation has information of any known or suspected release of materials which are resulting or may result in illegal discharges or pollutants discharging into stormwater, the storm drain system, or watercourses, said person shall take all necessary steps to ensure the discovery, containment, and cleanup of such release. In the event of such a release of hazardous materials, said person shall immediately notify emergency response agencies of the occurrence via emergency dispatch services. In the event of a release of nonhazardous materials, said person shall notify the director in person or by phone or facsimile no later than the next business day. Notifications in person or by phone shall be confirmed by written notice addressed and mailed to the city of Washougal within three business days of the phone notice. If the discharge of prohibited materials emanates from a commercial or industrial establishment, the owner or operator of such establishment shall also retain an on-site written record of the discharge and the actions taken to prevent its recurrence. Such records shall be retained for at least three years. (Ord. 1657 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010)