Construction Stormwater General Permits

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Beginning June 1, 2018, the standard fee for a City of Richland Right-of-Way Construction Permit for a Single Family Residential permit will be increased from $75 to $150. The permit fees for larger projects requiring construction of public infrastructure will also be changing, per Richland Municipal Code Chapter 12.08.040.

This fee change is due to to an increase in plan review requirements and the number of field inspections associated with stormwater regulations, erosion control inspections and also a general increase in customer service demands. In 2007 the Washington State Department of Ecology required larger Eastern Washington municipalities to pass and enforce ordinances regulating stormwater runoff from construction sites both during and after construction activities take place. Passage of these local ordinances is in compliance with the Department of Ecology’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) phase II permit and the Federal Clean Water Act. As more regulations and inspections were phased in, the amount of staff time required to process permit applications and the number of field inspections needed per permit have both increased.

The Department of Ecology requires a Construction Stormwater General Permit (CSWGP) for certain types of construction activity. The permit is designed to reduce or eliminate stormwater pollution from construction sites. The City of Richland Public Works Department will be verifying compliance with City and State requirements as part of its plan review permitting and inspection process.

Your building permit application will be considered incomplete if it does not include a documented Erosivity Waiver or a State Construction Stormwater General Permit when one is required.

Many small projects will be eligible to use the City of Richland Standard Erosion Control Detail to satisfy their requirements.

Many single family home projects can take some simple measures to comply with the City and State stormwater requirements. The City will be performing additional inspections of construction sites to determine if projects are complying with our new erosion control policies and illicit discharge ordinance.

Go to this link for our details. 

What type of construction activities need a construction stormwater general permit from Ecology?

Does your construction site meet any of the following criteria?

  • Is your project site is one (1) acre or more of disturbed ground?
  • Does your project site disturb less than one acre, but is part of a subdivision or other common planned development (such as a binding site plan or large commercial development)?
  • Is there a potential for polluted stormwater or construction waters to run off your site?

If you answered “Yes” to one or more of the criteria, then you will need a Construction Stormwater General Permit from Department of Ecology. Construction site operators must apply for a permit 60-days prior to discharging stormwater. The permitting process is outlined below.

Any construction activity that will be, or is part of a common plan of development that disturbs between one (1) and five (5) acres and has the potential to discharge runoff waters to the waters of Washington State must either have a permit or have qualified for an erosivity waiver.

If your project does not impact water quality, you may qualify for an erosivity waiver:

Some construction sites that don’t discharge any water off-site are exempt from the permit requirements. Erosivity waivers are possible only for stormwater discharges from small construction sites that disturb less than five acres. Waivers are not available for any construction that disturbs more than five acres, even if the phased construction plan doesn’t disturb more than five acres at a time. More information about erosivity waivers is available at https://ecology.wa.gov/Regulations-Permits/Permits-certifications/Stormwater-general-permits/Construction-stormwater-permit

State Stormwater General Permit Procedure:

1. Apply for coverage by submitting a Notice of Intent (NOI) application.

Download the official application for Notice of Intent (NOI), from the Department of Ecology website at http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/wq/stormwater/construction/. You must apply at least 60 days prior to discharging stormwater. You are also required to publish (in the local newspaper) two public notices with pertinent information about the project for two weeks in a row, seven days between publishing dates.

2. Develop and use a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP).

You must develop and use a SWPPP to show what type and where erosion and sediment controls will be used on the construction site. The most important part of the SWPPP is implementation of Best Management Practices (BMP’s). See the Dept. of Ecology website for information on how to produce a SWPPP for your construction site at www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/wq/stormwater/construction

3. Pay the Department of Ecology permit fees.

There is no application fee, but there are annual permit fees set by Dept. of Ecology based on the size of the acreage of the site. Ecology will bill the applicants after the permit is issued and annually thereafter until the permit is terminated.

4. Monitor stormwater and inspect Best Management Practices (BMPs).

The permit requires some monitoring of stormwater discharges. For details and instructions on the required stormwater monitoring and required documentation see the Dept. of Ecology website for a guide called How to Do Stormwater Monitoring: A guide for construction sites. All permittees must perform visual site inspection of their BMP’s to ensure they function correctly. Inspections are done weekly or within 24 hours of any discharge from the construction site. A Certified Erosion and Sediment Control Lead (CESCL) must do the site inspections.

5. Record and report results.

The person who conducts the stormwater sampling is also responsible for recording the results of the monitoring. A monthly discharge monitoring report (DMR) must be submitted to Dept. of Ecology. All monitoring records, the SWPPP and all documentation of compliance must be kept for at least 3 years after the project is completed and the permit is terminated.

6. Terminate the CSWGP upon completion & stabilization of project.

You can terminate the CSWGP once you have stabilized all soils, eliminated construction stormwater and removed all temporary BMP’s. Send a completed Notice of Termination (NOT) to the Dept. of Ecology. Permit fees continue until Dept. of Ecology receives the completed NOT and termination is granted.

Additional information about the Construction Stormwater General Permit can be found at:
http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/wq/stormwater/index.html

 

If you have questions about how these new requirements apply to your project, please contact:
Jason Reathaford at (509) 942-7742 or Jreathaford@ci.richland.wa.us
or Judy Garcia at (509) 942-7790 or Jugarcia@ci.richland.wa.us