[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Springfield 9-9-2013. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Sewers — See Ch. 300.
Stormwater management — See Ch. 336.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 338.
Water — See Ch. 405.
Editor's Note: This ordinance was adopted as Ch. 301 but was renumbered to fit into the organizational structure of the Code.
Regulation of illicit connections and discharges to the municipal storm drain system is required by federal and state law, and is necessary for the protection of the City's water bodies and groundwater, and to safeguard the public health, safety, welfare and the environment.
The objectives of this chapter are:
To prevent pollutants from entering the City's municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4);
To prohibit illicit connections and unauthorized discharges to the MS4;
To require the removal of all such illicit connections;
To comply with state and federal statutes and regulations relating to stormwater discharges; and
To establish the legal authority to ensure compliance with the provisions of this chapter through inspection, monitoring, and enforcement.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AUTHORIZED ENFORCEMENT AGENCY
- The Department of Public Works of the City of Springfield (hereinafter the "Department"), its employees or agents designated to enforce this chapter.
- BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICE (BMP)
- An activity, procedure, restraint, or structural improvement that helps to reduce the quantity or improve the quality of stormwater 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 waters of the United States or the commonwealth from any source.
- Water beneath the surface of the ground.
- ILLICIT CONNECTION
- A surface or subsurface drain or conveyance, which allows an unlawful 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, permitted, or approved before the effective date of this chapter.
- ILLICIT DISCHARGE
- A direct or indirect discharge to the municipal storm drain system that is not composed entirely of stormwater, except as exempted in § 334-7. The term does not include a discharge in compliance with an NPDES stormwater discharge permit or a surface water discharge permit, or resulting from fire-fighting activities exempted pursuant to § 334-7 of this chapter.
- 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 rooftops.
- 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 City.
- NATIONAL POLLUTANT DISCHARGE ELIMINATION SYSTEM (NPDES) STORMWATER DISCHARGE PERMIT
- A permit issued by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, or jointly with the commonwealth, that authorizes the discharge of pollutants to waters of the United States.
- NON-STORMWATER DISCHARGE
- A discharge to the municipal storm drain system not composed entirely of stormwater.
- 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.
- 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 the municipal storm drain system or any waters of the commonwealth. Pollutants shall include, without limitation:
- A. Paints, varnishes, and solvents;
- B. Oil and other automotive fluids;
- C. Nonhazardous liquid and solid wastes and yard wastes;
- D. Refuse, rubbish, garbage, litter, or other discarded or abandoned objects, articles, accumulations and floatables;
- E. Pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers;
- F. Hazardous materials and wastes; sewage, fecal coliform and pathogens;
- G. Dissolved and particulate metals;
- H. Animal wastes;
- I. Rock, sand, salt, soils;
- J. Construction wastes and residues; and
- K. Noxious or offensive matter of any kind.
- PROCESS WASTEWATER
- Any 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.
- The process by which groundwater is replenished by precipitation through the percolation of runoff and surface water through the soil.
- Any surface flow, runoff, or drainage consisting entirely of water from any form of natural precipitation, and resulting from such precipitation.
- SURFACE WATER DISCHARGE PERMIT
- A permit issued by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) pursuant to 314 CMR 3.00 that authorizes the discharge of pollutants to waters of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
- 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. 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 MGL Ch. 21C and Ch. 21E, and the regulations at 310 CMR 30.000 and 310 CMR 40.0000.
- 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.
- A natural or man-made channel through which water flows or a stream of water, including, without limitation, a river, brook or underground stream.
- WATERS OF THE COMMONWEALTH
- All waters within the jurisdiction of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, including, without limitation, rivers, streams, lakes, ponds, springs, impoundments, estuaries, wetlands, costal waters, and groundwater.
This chapter shall apply to flows entering the municipally owned storm drainage system.
The Department shall administer, implement and enforce this chapter. Any powers granted to or duties imposed upon the Department may be delegated in writing by the Director of the Department to employees or agents of the Department.
The Department may promulgate rules and regulations to effectuate the purposes of this chapter. Failure by the Department to promulgate such rules and regulations shall not have the effect of suspending or invalidating this chapter.
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 waters of the commonwealth.
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.
Obstruction of municipal storm drain system. No person shall obstruct or interfere with the normal flow of stormwater into or out of the municipal storm drain system without prior written approval from the Department.
Discharge or flow resulting from fire-fighting activities is exempt.
The following non-stormwater discharges or flows are exempt from the prohibition of non-stormwaters, provided that the source is not a significant contributor of a pollutant to the municipal storm drain system:
Water line flushing;
Flow from potable water sources;
Natural flow from riparian habitats and wetlands;
Diverted stream flow;
Uncontaminated groundwater infiltration as defined in 40 CFR 35.2005(20), or uncontaminated pumped groundwater;
Water from exterior foundation drains, footing drains (not including active groundwater dewatering systems), crawl space pumps, or air conditioning condensation;
Discharge from landscape irrigation or lawn watering;
Water from individual residential car washing, or temporary fund-raising car wash events;
Discharge from dechlorinated swimming pool water (less than one ppm chlorine), provided the water is allowed to stand for one week prior to draining or tested for chlorine levels with a pool test kit prior to draining, and the pool is drained in such a way as not to cause a nuisance;
Discharge from street sweeping;
Dye testing, provided verbal notification is given to the Department prior to the time of the test;
Non-stormwater discharge permitted under an NPDES permit or a surface water discharge permit, waiver, or waste discharge order administered under the authority of the United States Environmental Protection Agency or the Department of Environmental Protection, provided that the discharge is in full compliance with the requirements of the permit, waiver, or order and applicable laws and regulations; and
Discharge for which advanced written approval is received from the Department.
The Department 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 authorized enforcement agency may take all reasonable steps to prevent or minimize harm to the public health, safety, welfare or the environment.
Any person discharging to a municipal storm drain system in violation of this chapter may have their municipal storm drain system access terminated if such termination would abate or reduce an illicit discharge. The Department will notify a violator of the proposed termination of municipal storm drain system access. The violator may petition the Department for reconsideration and hearing. A person commits an offense if the person reinstates municipal storm drain system access to premises terminated pursuant to this section, without prior approval from the Department.
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 storm drainage system or waters of the commonwealth, 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, Department of Public Works, and the Board of Health. In the event of a release of nonhazardous material, the reporting person shall notify the authorized enforcement agency no later than the next business day. The reporting person shall provide to the authorized enforcement agency 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.
The Department or an authorized agent of the Department shall enforce this chapter, and any regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders issued thereunder, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
Civil relief. If a person violates the provisions of this chapter, or any regulation, permit, notice, or order issued thereunder, the Department may seek injunctive relief in a court of competent jurisdiction to restrain the person from activities that would create further violations or to compel the person to abate or remediate the violation.
Orders. The Department or an authorized agent of the Department may issue a written order to enforce the provisions of this chapter or the regulations thereunder, which may include:
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 City may, at its option, undertake such work, and expenses thereof shall be charged to the violator or property owner.
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 of the costs incurred by the City, including administrative costs. The violator or property owner may file a written protest objecting to the amount or basis of costs with the Department within 30 days of receipt of the notification of the costs incurred. If the amount due is not received by the expiration of the time in which to file a protest or within 30 days following a decision of the Department affirming or reducing the costs, or from a final decision of a court of competent jurisdiction, the costs shall become a special assessment against the property owner and shall constitute a lien on the owner's property for the amount of said costs. Interest shall begin to accrue on any unpaid costs at the statutory rate provided in MGL c. 59, § 57 after the 31st day at which the costs first become due.
Criminal penalty. Any person who violates any provision of this chapter, regulation, order or permit issued thereunder, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $[_____]. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
Noncriminal disposition. As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the City may elect to utilize the noncriminal disposition procedure set forth in MGL c. 40, § 21D. The Director of the Department, or the Director's designee, shall be the enforcing person. The penalty for the first violation shall be $[_____]. The penalty for the second violation shall be $[_____]. The penalty for the third and subsequent violations shall be $[_____]. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
Entry to perform duties under this chapter. To the extent permitted by state law, or if authorized by the owner or other party in control of the property, the Department, its agents, officers, and employees may enter upon privately owned property for the purpose of performing their duties under this chapter and regulations and may make or cause to be made such examinations, surveys or sampling as the Department deems reasonably necessary.
Appeals. The decisions or orders of the Department shall be final. Further relief shall be to a court of competent jurisdiction.
Remedies not exclusive. The remedies listed in this chapter are not exclusive of any other remedies available under any applicable federal, state or local law.
The provisions of this chapter are hereby declared to be severable. If any provision, paragraph, sentence, or clause 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.
Residential property owners shall have 60 days from the effective date of this chapter to comply with its provisions, provided good cause is shown for the failure to comply with the chapter during that period.