Town of Abington, MA
Plymouth County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Abington as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 200.
[Adopted 4-3-2006 ATM by Art. 8[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This Article also superseded former Art. I, Connection of Runoff Sources to System, adopted 6-13-2001 STM by Art. 14.

§ 128-1 Certain connections prohibited.

No property owner shall allow roof downspouts, foundation drains, sump pumps, areaway drains, or any other sources of surface runoff or groundwater to be connected to a building sewer or other pipe which discharges to the municipal sewer system.

§ 128-2 Notice to discontinue illegal connection.

Any property owner found to be in violation of this article shall be given written notice by the Board of Sewer Commissioners requiring said property owner to provide proof of discontinuance of said illegal connection within 30 days thereafter, unless further extended by vote of the Board of Sewer Commissioners.

§ 128-3 Violations and penalties.

Failure to discontinue said illegal connection pursuant to said notice shall cause said property owner to be assessed a fine of $50 per day until the violation is shown to be removed and proven to be remedied. Said fine shall be added to the property owner's sewer usage bill and shall be subject to the interest and lien penalties of the usage bill.
[Adopted 4-2-2012 ATM by Art. 14]

§ 128-4 Purpose.

A. 
The purpose of this Bylaw is to eliminate non-stormwater discharges to the Town of Abington's municipal separate storm sewer system. Non-stormwater discharges contain contaminants and supply additional flows to the Town's storm drain system. Both increased and contaminated stormwater runoff are major causes of:
(1) 
Impairment of water quality and flow in lakes, ponds, streams, rivers, wetlands and groundwater;
(2) 
Contamination of drinking water supplies;
(3) 
Alteration or destruction of aquatic and wildlife habitat; and
(4) 
Flooding.
B. 
Regulation of illicit connections and discharges to the municipal separate storm sewer system is necessary for the protection of the Town of Abington's natural resources, municipal facilities, and to safeguard the public health, safety, welfare and the environment.
C. 
The objectives of this Bylaw are:
(1) 
To prevent pollutants from entering the Town's municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4);
(2) 
To prohibit illicit connections and unauthorized discharges to the MS4;
(3) 
To require the removal of all such illicit connections;
(4) 
To comply with state and federal statutes and regulations relating to stormwater discharges; and
(5) 
To establish the legal authority to ensure compliance with the provisions of this Bylaw through inspection, monitoring, and enforcement.

§ 128-5 Definitions.

Unless a different definition is indicated in other sections of this Bylaw, the following definitions and provisions shall apply throughout this Article, also referred to in this Article as this Bylaw.
BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICE (BMP)
An activity, procedure, restraint, or structural improvement that helps to reduce the quantity or improve the quality of storm water runoff.
CLEAN WATER ACT
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. § 1251 et seq.) as hereafter amended.
DISCHARGE OF POLLUTANTS
The addition from any source of any pollutant or combination of pollutants into the municipal storm drain system or into the Wetland Resource Areas from any source.
DISCHARGER
A person or persons who discharge any pollutant or combination of pollutants into the municipal storm drain system or into the Wetland Resource Areas from any source.
ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITY
The Town Manager, and Town employees and/or agents designated by the Town Manager to enforce this Bylaw.
GROUNDWATER
Water beneath the surface of the ground.
ILLICIT CONNECTION
A surface or subsurface drain or conveyance, which allows an illicit discharge into the municipal storm drain system, including without limitation sewage, process wastewater, or wash water and any connections from indoor drains, sinks, or toilets, regardless of whether said connection was previously allowed or approved before the effective date of this Bylaw.
ILLICIT DISCHARGE
Direct or indirect discharge to the municipal storm drain system that is not composed entirely of stormwater, except as exempted herein.
ILLICIT DISCHARGE DETECTION AND ELIMINATION (IDDE)
One of six Minimum Control Measures regulated under the Town's NPDES Phase II MS4 Permit. The federal regulation governing implementation of the IDDE program under this Permit is Section (b)(3) of 40 CFR 122.34, "Storm Water Phase II Regulations."
IMPERVIOUS SURFACE
Any material or structure on or above the ground that prevents water infiltrating the underlying soil. Impervious surface includes without limitation roads, paved parking lots, sidewalks, and roof tops.
MUNICIPAL SEPARATE STORM SEWER SYSTEM (MS4) or MUNICIPAL STORM DRAIN SYSTEM
The system of conveyances designed or used for collecting or conveying stormwater, including any road with a drainage system, street, gutter, curb, inlet, piped storm drain, pumping facility, retention or detention basin, natural or man-made or altered drainage channel, reservoir, and other drainage structure that together comprise the storm drainage system owned or operated by the Town of Abington.
NATIONAL POLLUTANT DISCHARGE ELIMINATION SYSTEM (NPDES) STORM WATER DISCHARGE PERMIT
A permit issued by United States Environmental Protection Agency or jointly with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that authorizes and regulates the discharge of pollutants to waters of the United States.
NON-STORMWATER DISCHARGE
Discharge to the municipal storm drain system not composed entirely of stormwater.
NOTICE OF VIOLATION
A written notice given to a person by the Enforcement Authority that states that said person has violated this Bylaw on any specified occasion.
PERSON
An individual, partnership, association, firm, company, trust, corporation, agency, authority, department or political subdivision of the Commonwealth or the federal government, to the extent permitted by law, and any officer, employee, or agent of such person.
POLLUTANT
Any element or property of sewage, agricultural, industrial or commercial waste, runoff, leachate, heated effluent, or other matter whether originating at a point or nonpoint source, that is or may be introduced into any Wetland Resource Areas. Effluent waters from dewatering operations are adequately regulated under NPDES. Pollutants shall include without limitation:
A. 
Paints, varnishes, and solvents;
B. 
Oil and other automotive fluids;
C. 
Non-hazardous liquid and solid wastes and yard wastes;
D. 
Refuse, rubbish, garbage, litter, or other discarded or abandoned objects, ordinances, accumulations and floatables;
E. 
Pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers;
F. 
Hazardous materials and wastes;
G. 
Sewage, fecal coliform and pathogens;
H. 
Dissolved and particulate metals;
I. 
Animal wastes;
J. 
Rock, sand, salt, soils;
K. 
Construction wastes and residues; and
L. 
Noxious or offensive matter of any kind.
PROCESS WASTEWATER
Water which, during manufacturing or processing, comes into direct contact with or results from the production or use of any material, intermediate product, finished product, or waste product.
RECHARGE
The process by which groundwater is replenished by precipitation through the percolation of runoff and surface water through the soil.
STORMWATER
Runoff from precipitation or snow melt.
TOXIC OR HAZARDOUS MATERIAL OR WASTE
Any material, which because of its quantity, concentration, chemical, corrosive, flammable, reactive, toxic, infectious or radioactive characteristics, either separately or in combination with any substance or substances, constitutes a present or potential threat to human health, safety, welfare, or to the environment as defined under MGL Ch. 21C and Ch. 21E, and the regulations at 310 CMR 30.000 and 310 CMR 40.0000. Toxic or hazardous materials include any synthetic organic chemical, petroleum product, heavy metal, radioactive or infectious waste, acid and alkali, and any substance defined as Toxic or Hazardous under these laws and regulations.
WASTEWATER
Any sanitary waste, sludge, or septic tank or cesspool overflow, and water that during manufacturing, cleaning or processing, comes into direct contact with or results from the production or use of any raw material, intermediate product, finished product, byproduct or waste product.
WATERCOURSE
A natural or man-made channel through which water flows or a stream of water, including a river, brook or underground stream.
WETLAND RESOURCE AREAS
All wetlands and watercourses protected under the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act and the Abington Wetlands Protection Bylaw.

§ 128-6 Applicability.

This Bylaw shall apply to flows entering the municipally owned storm drainage system, a watercourse, and any Wetland Resource Areas located within the boundaries of the Town of Abington.

§ 128-7 Authority.

This Bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rule statutes, and the regulations of the federal Clean Water Act found at 40 CFR 122.34.

§ 128-8 Responsibility for administration.

The Enforcement Authority shall administer, implement and enforce this Bylaw. Any powers granted to or duties imposed upon the Enforcement Authority may be delegated in writing by the Enforcement Authority to employees or agents of the Enforcement Authority, including other Town officials and employees.

§ 128-9 Regulations.

The Enforcement Authority may promulgate rules and regulations to effectuate the purposes of this Bylaw. Failure by the Enforcement Authority to promulgate such rules and regulations shall not have the effect of suspending or invalidating this Bylaw.

§ 128-10 Prohibited activities.

A. 
Illicit discharges. No person shall dump, discharge, cause or allow to be discharged any pollutant or non-stormwater discharge into the municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4), into a watercourse, or into the Wetland Resource Areas.
B. 
Illicit connections. No person shall construct, use, allow, maintain or continue any illicit connection to the municipal storm drain system, regardless of whether the connection was permissible under applicable law, regulation or custom at the time of connection.
C. 
Obstruction of municipal storm drain system (MS4). No Person shall obstruct or interfere with the normal flow of stormwater into or out of the MS4 without prior consent from the Enforcement Authority. No person shall dump or dispose of yard waste (leaves, grass clippings, etc.) into the MS4, or into open watercourses (swales, brooks and streams).
D. 
Other prohibited activities.
(1) 
Drains. No one shall tie any pump, cellar, yard, roof or area drain directly into the storm water drainage system without approval from the Enforcement Authority.
(2) 
Catch basins. No Person shall directly or indirectly dump, discharge or cause or allow to be discharged into any catchbasin, any solid waste, construction debris, paint or paint product, antifreeze, hazardous waste, oil, gasoline, grease and all other automotive and petroleum products, solvents and degreasers, drain cleaners, commercial and household cleaners, soap, detergent, ammonia, food and food waste, grease or yard waste, animal feces, dirt, sand, gravel or other pollutant. Any Person determined by the Applicable Authority to be responsible for the discharge of any of the above substances to a catchbasin may be held responsible for cleaning the catchbasin and any other portions of the storm water system impacted according to Town standards and requirements or paying the cost for such cleaning. In addition, the Person shall be responsible for paying any penalties assessed by the Town pursuant to this Bylaw.
(3) 
Septage. No Person shall discharge or cause or allow to be discharged any septage, or septage tank or cesspool overflow into the Town's storm water drainage system.
(4) 
Storage and disposal of hazardous material. No one shall dispose of anything other than clear water into the Town's storm drainage system. The disposal of waste, gasoline or any other hazardous material into the storm drainage system is strictly prohibited and is in violation of state and federal pollution laws.
(5) 
Private drainage systems. It is prohibited for anyone with a private drainage system from tying into the municipal storm drainage system without written approval from the Enforcement Authority. The maintenance of any and all private drainage systems shall be the responsibility of the owners.

§ 128-11 Exemptions.

A. 
Discharges or flows resulting from fire fighting activities or other authorized hydrant use are exempt.
B. 
The following non-stormwater discharges or flows are exempt from the prohibitions of this Bylaw provided that the source is not a significant contributor of a pollutant to the municipal storm drain system:
(1) 
Waterline flushing;
(2) 
Water from exterior foundation drains, footing drains (not including active groundwater dewatering systems), crawl space pumps, or air conditioning condensation;
(3) 
Discharge from landscape irrigation or lawn watering;
(4) 
Water from individual residential car washing;
(5) 
Discharge from dechlorinated swimming pool water (less than one ppm chlorine) provided the water is allowed to stand for one week following last chlorination prior to draining and the pool is drained in such a way as not to cause a nuisance;
(6) 
Discharge from street sweeping;
(7) 
Flow from potable water sources;
(8) 
Springs;
(9) 
Natural flow from riparian habitats and wetlands;
(10) 
Diverted stream flow;
(11) 
Rising groundwater;
(12) 
Uncontaminated groundwater infiltration as defined in 40 CFR 35.2005(20), or uncontaminated pumped groundwater (e.g., sump pump), provided that the operator seeks written approval from the Enforcement Authority prior to discharge, and thereafter discharges in accordance with the applicable laws and regulations to be issued by the Enforcement Authority;
(13) 
Dye testing, provided verbal notification is given to the Enforcement Authority prior to the time of the test;
(14) 
Non-stormwater discharge permitted under an NPDES permit, waiver, or waste discharge order administered under the authority of the United States Environmental Protection Agency, provided that the discharge is in full compliance with the requirements of the written approval, waiver, or order and applicable laws and regulations; and
(15) 
Discharge for which advanced written approval is received from the Enforcement Authority as necessary to protect the public interest.

§ 128-12 Emergency suspension of storm drainage system access.

A. 
The Enforcement Authority may suspend municipal storm drain system access to any person or property without prior written notice when such suspension is necessary to stop an actual or threatened discharge of pollutants that presents imminent risk of harm to the public health, safety, welfare or the environment. In the event any person fails to comply with an emergency suspension order, the Enforcement Authority may take all reasonable steps to prevent or minimize harm to the public health, safety, welfare or the environment.
B. 
A person commits an offense if the person reinstates MS4 access to premises terminated pursuant to this Bylaw, without the prior written approval of the Enforcement Authority.

§ 128-13 Industrial or construction activity discharges.

A. 
NPDES stormwater permit. Any person subject to an industrial or construction activity NPDES storm water discharge permit shall comply with all provisions of such permit. Proof of compliance with said permit may be required in a form acceptable to the Enforcement Authority prior to the allowing of discharges to the MS4.
B. 
Monitoring of discharges. Upon notice of an alleged illicit discharge or connection, the Enforcement Authority have the right to investigate any facility that has storm water discharges associated with industrial activity, including construction activity. The exercise of this right does not constitute a replacement or substitution for enforcement by federal or state agencies for facilities that are adequately regulated either under a NPDES permit or, if a violation is determined to have occurred, under 310 CMR 40.00, the Massachusetts Contingency Plan.

§ 128-14 Watercourse protection.

A. 
Every person owning property through which a watercourse passes, or such person's lessee, shall keep and maintain that part of the watercourse within the property free of trash, debris, and other obstacles that would pollute, contaminate, or significantly retard the flow of water through the watercourse. In addition, the owner or lessee shall maintain existing privately owned structures within or adjacent to a watercourse so that such structures will not become a hazard to the use, function, or physical integrity of the watercourse.
B. 
Failure by the property owner to maintain the watercourse does not constitute an obligation on the part of the Town to assume this responsibility.

§ 128-15 Notification of spills.

Notwithstanding other requirements of local, state or federal law, as soon as a person responsible for a facility or operation, or responsible for emergency response for a facility or operation has information of or suspects a release of materials at that facility or operation resulting in or which may result in discharge of pollutants to the municipal drainage system or Wetland Resource Areas, the person shall take all necessary steps to ensure containment, and cleanup of the release. In the event of a release of oil or hazardous materials, the person shall immediately notify the municipal fire and police departments. In the event of a release of non-hazardous material, the reporting person shall notify the Enforcement Authority no later than the next business day. The reporting person shall provide to the Enforcement Authority written confirmation of all telephone, facsimile or in-person notifications within three business days thereafter. If the discharge of prohibited materials is from a commercial or industrial facility, the facility owner or operator of the facility shall retain on-site a written record of the discharge and the actions taken to prevent its recurrence. Such records shall be retained for at least three years.

§ 128-16 Enforcement.

The Enforcement Authority or an authorized agent of the Enforcement Authority shall enforce this Bylaw, regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
A. 
Entry to perform duties. To the extent permitted by state law, or if authorized by the owner or other party in control of the property, the Enforcement Authority may enter upon privately owned property for the purpose of performing their duties under these regulations and may make or cause to be made such examinations, surveys or sampling as the Enforcement Authority deems reasonably necessary.
B. 
Civil relief. If a person violates the provisions of this Bylaw, regulations, written approval, notice, or order issued thereunder, the Enforcement Authority may seek injunctive relief in a court of competent jurisdiction restraining the person from activities which would create further violations or compelling the person to perform abatement or remediation of the violation.
C. 
Orders.
(1) 
The Enforcement Authority may issue a written order to enforce the provisions of this Bylaw or the regulations thereunder, which may include:
(a) 
Elimination of illicit connections or discharges to the MS4;
(b) 
Performance of monitoring, analyses, and reporting;
(c) 
That unlawful discharges, practices, or operations shall cease and desist;
(d) 
Remediation of contamination in connection therewith; and
(e) 
Implementation of source control or treatment BMPs.
(2) 
If the enforcing person determines that abatement or remediation of contamination is required, the order shall set forth a deadline by which such abatement or remediation must be completed. Said order shall further advise that, should the violator or property owner fail to abate or perform remediation within the specified deadline, the Town may, at its option, undertake such work, and expenses thereof shall be charged to the violator.
(3) 
Within 30 days after completing all measures necessary to abate the violation or to perform remediation, the violator and the property owner will be notified, in writing, of the costs incurred by the Town, including administrative costs, for which payment is due to the Town. The violator or property owner may file a written protest objecting to the amount or basis of costs with the Enforcement Authority within 30 days of the Town's issuance of the notification of the costs incurred. Payment of the Town's costs is due within 30 days of the issuance of the notification, or if a protest is filed, within 30 days following a decision of the Enforcement Authority affirming or reducing the costs, whichever is later. Pursuant to MGL Ch. 40, § 58, the Town is hereby authorized to impose and record a municipal charges lien on the property for any costs that have not been paid to the Town by the applicable due date, and unpaid charges shall be added to the tax on the property, in the manner provided in said statute.
D. 
Criminal penalty. Any person who violates any provision of this Bylaw, regulation, order or written approval issued thereunder, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $300 per violation. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
E. 
Non-criminal disposition. As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the Town may elect to utilize the non-criminal disposition procedure set forth in MGL Ch. 40, § 21D in which case the Enforcement Authority shall be the enforcing person. For non-criminal disposition, the penalty for the first violation shall be $100, the penalty for the second violation shall be $200, and the penalty for the third and subsequent violations shall be $300. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
F. 
Appeals. The decisions or orders of the Enforcement Authority shall be final. Further relief shall be to a court of competent jurisdiction.
G. 
Remedies not exclusive. The remedies listed in this Bylaw are not exclusive of any other remedies available under any applicable federal, state or local law.

§ 128-17 Severability.

The provisions of this Bylaw are hereby declared to be severable. If any provision, paragraph, sentence, or clause, of this Bylaw 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 Bylaw.

§ 128-18 Transitional provisions.

Property owners shall have 90 days from the effective date of the Bylaw to comply with its provisions provided good cause is shown for the failure to comply with the Bylaw during that period.