City of Frederick / County of Frederick


Maryland Department of Environment (MDE) has issued an NPDES permit to Frederick County to control storm drain system pollutant discharges. MDE has drafted a permit designed to comply with the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulations and to control stormwater pollutant discharges from the County’s storm drain system. The permit is issued for five years.

Under the conditions of the permit, the County is required to possess the legal authority to control storm drain system pollutants, continue mapping its storm sewer system, monitor stormwater discharges, and develop and implement comprehensive management programs. The permit also requires increases in impervious area treatment goals, the development of litter control programs, and the implementation of environmental site design for new and redevelopment projects to the maximum extent practicable. The County is also required to develop and implement plans to address stormwater waste load allocations established under EPA approved total maximum daily loads. Penalties for failure to comply with the terms of the permit are provided.

All jurisdictions in the State, including Frederick County, are required to maintain and implement a stormwater management ordinance that is in compliance with the requirements of Maryland’s stormwater program Environment Article, Title 4, Subtitle 2, Annotated Code of Maryland and COMAR 26.17.02

These requirements include ensuring the proper construction and maintenance of all stormwater management features through timely inspections of new ESD practices and structural stormwater management facilities as well as triennial inspections of completed ESD treatment systems and structural facilities. Maintenance procedures, including triennial inspection policies, are described in COMAR 26.17.02.11.

By following the conditions in its approved ordinance, including mimicking natural hydrologic runoff characteristics, designing new projects to meet the “woods in good condition” criteria, and implementing ESD to the MEP, the County of Frederick will be in compliance with this permit condition and with the requirements under 40 CFR for post-construction stormwater management.

City of Frederick Stormwater Ordinance

CHAPTER 1-15.2: STORMWATER MANAGEMENT.

§1-15.2-1.0 PURPOSE AND AUTHORITY

(A) The purpose of this chapter is to protect, maintain, and enhance the public health, safety, and general welfare by establishing minimum requirements and procedures that control the adverse impacts associated with increased stormwater runoff. The goal is to manage stormwater by using environmental site design (ESD) to the maximum extent practicable (MEP) to maintain after development as nearly as possible, the predevelopment runoff characteristics, and to reduce stream channel erosion, pollution, siltation and sedimentation, and local flooding, and to use appropriate structural best management practices (BMPs) only when necessary. This will restore, enhance, and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of streams, minimize damage to public and private property, and reduce the impacts of land development.

(B) The provisions of this chapter, pursuant to the environment article, title 4, subtitle 2, annotated code of Maryland, 2009 replacement volume, are adopted by the board of county commissioners of Frederick county, Maryland and shall apply to all development occurring within the unincorporated areas of Frederick county and may apply to the incorporated areas within the geographical limits of Frederick county, if the municipal government adopts these regulations and enters into an enforcement agreement with the board of county commissioners. The application of this chapter and provisions expressed herein shall be the minimum stormwater management requirements and shall not be deemed a limitation or repeal of any other powers granted by state statute. The Frederick county division of permitting and development review (the "division") shall be responsible for the coordination and enforcement of the provisions of this chapter.

ARTICLE IX: MAINTENANCE

§1-15.2-9.1 EASEMENT/MAINTENANCE AGREEMENT
  1. Prior to the recordation of a final subdivision plat, or the issuance of a building permit where no subdivision is taking place, and for any development of property which will require stormwater management, an easement/maintenance agreement(s) necessary for perpetual maintenance of ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs shall be executed by all those having an interest in the property to be affected and shall be recorded among the land records.
  2. The easement/maintenance agreement shall be binding on all subsequent property owners. The easement/maintenance agreement shall:
    1. Provide for the creation of an easement for all ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs;
    2. provide for the division to have access for inspection and/or maintenance of the ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs;
    3. Specifically identify all lots or parcels that are benefitted by the ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs;
    4. Specify the party or entity (e.g. a property owners association) that is responsible for maintenance of ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs; and
    5. Provide that upon receipt of notice of any problems or deficiencies in the ESD treatment systems or structural BMPs the responsible party will correct problems as ordered by the division. If the requested corrections are not made within 30 days, the division may, at its option, perform all the necessary work to bring the ESD planning techniques and practices and structural BMPs into compliance with statutory requirements, and the owner of the land(s) upon which the facility is located and any benefitted property may be assessed for the cost of the work. If not paid within 30 days, the assessment shall create a lien on the property upon which the facility is located or any benefitted property and may be included in the tax bill and collected as taxes by the county.
  3. Satisfactory proof of the identities of all those having an interest in the encumbered and benefitted property shall be provided to the division in a form acceptable to the office of the county attorney.
  4. To the extent the board of county commissioners agrees to accept maintenance responsibility or ownership of ESD planning techniques and practices and structural BMPs, these facilities shall be maintained by an agency appointed by the board of county commissioners. The board of county commissioners reserves the right to set up storm drainage districts to pay for this service.
§1-15.2-9.2 MAINTENANCE INSPECTION
  1. The division shall ensure that preventative maintenance is performed by inspecting all ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs. Inspection shall occur during the first year of operation and at least once every 3 years thereafter.
  2. Inspection reports shall be maintained by the division for all ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs.
  3. Inspection reports for ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs shall include the following:
    1. The date of inspection;
    2. Name of inspector;
    3. An assessment of the quality of the stormwater management system related to ESD treatment system efficiency and the control of runoff to the MEP;
    4. The condition of:
      1. Vegetation or filter media;
      2. Fences or other safety devices;
      3. Spillways, valves, or other control structures;
      4. Embankments, slopes, and safety benches;
      5. Reservoir or treatment areas;
      6. Inlet and outlet channels or structures;
      7. Underground drainage;
      8. Sediment and debris accumulation in storage and forebay areas;
      9. Any nonstructural practices to the extent practicable; and
      10. Any other item that could affect the proper function of the stormwater management system.
    5. Description of needed maintenance.
  4. After notifying an owner or other responsible person of the inspection results, the owner or other responsible person shall have 30 days, or other time frame mutually agreed to between the division and the owner or other responsible person, to correct the deficiencies discovered. The division shall conduct a subsequent inspection to ensure completion of the repairs.
  5. If repairs are not properly undertaken and completed, the enforcement procedures described in Article X of this chapter shall be followed.
  6. If, after an inspection by the division, the condition of ESD treatment systems or structural BMP is determined to present an immediate danger to public health or safety, the division shall take such action as may be necessary to protect the public and make the facility safe. Any cost incurred by the division shall be assessed against the owner(s) or other responsible person(s), as provided in §1-15.2-9.l (b)(4) of this chapter.
§1-15.2-9.3 MAINTENANCE RESPONSIBILITY
  1. The person responsible for maintenance of ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs, shall maintain in good condition and promptly repair and restore all ESD practices, grade surfaces, walls, drains, dams and structures, vegetation, erosion and sediment control measures, and other protective devices in perpetuity. Such repairs or restoration and maintenance shall be in accordance with previously approved or newly submitted plans.
  2. A maintenance schedule shall be developed and shown on the approved final SWM plan, and shall indicate the necessary maintenance and frequency thereof.
  3. ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs shall be owned and maintained by a property owners association, a private property owner, or another private person. Only those ESD planning techniques and practices and structural BMPs that provide a recreational benefit and access to the general public may be considered for acceptance and maintenance by the board of county commissioners; provided that:
    1. The request for public maintenance is made prior to approval of the SWM concept plan; and
    2. The division and any affected county agency provides an affirmative recommendation to the board of county commissioners. ESD planning techniques and practices and structural BMPs to be dedicated to the board of county commissioners shall be maintained by the developer until such time as they are accepted by the board of county commissioners. To the extent the board of county commissioners agrees to accept ESD treatment systems and structural BMPs, the facilities shall be maintained by an agency appointed by the board of county commissioners. The board of county commissioners reserves the right to set up storm drainage districts to pay for this service.

ARTICLE X: PENALTIES AND ENFORCEMENT

§1-15.2-10.L ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS.
  1. The division may utilize any one or a combination of the following actions for enforcement of this chapter:
    1. A notice of violation, specifying the need for corrective action if noncompliance with any plan or agreement is identified;
    2. A stop work order, if a violation persists;
    3. Collection of the security if reasonable efforts to correct the violation have not been undertaken within a reasonable time period; or
    4. Civil citation, a civil action or criminal prosecution may be brought against any person in violation of this chapter.
  2. Any step in the enforcement process may be taken at any time, depending on the severity of the violation.

City of Frederick Stormwater Management Utility Fees

On September 5, 2013, the Board of Aldermen adopted changes to the methods of calculating and collecting the Stormwater Management (SWM) Utility Fees for City properties.  Currently, The City of Frederick charges a Stormwater Management (SWM) Utility Fee for all properties that receive water or sewer service located in the City limits.  The revenue generated from this fee is used to fund SWM programs throughout the City including the maintenance and inspection of stormwater management facilities, storm drain systems, swales, ditches, culverts, as well as street sweeping and compliance requirements for  the City’s NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit.

At the September 5, 2013 Public Meeting, the following changes were formally adopted to the methods of calculating and collecting the SWM Utility Fee:

  • All properties within the City will now be charged a Stormwater Management Utility Fee
  • The Fee will be based upon impervious area.  For residential properties including townhouses and condominiums, the average percent impervious area has been estimated.  This is also the case for the downtown district area as defined in the ordinance.  For all other properties including commercial properties, the fee will be based upon actual measured impervious area.
  • All non-residential properties which have on-site stormwater management designed to current standards are eligible for a credit against the fee.  Future residential construction designed to the latest Environmental Site Design standards will be eligible for a credit.  The credit will be based on the standards that the on-site SWM facility was designed to at the time the property is developed.
  • The changes, as adopted, shall take effect on January 1, 2014.  The revised fee will appear on the next utility bill after that date.  Properties that do not currently receive a utility bill will be billed separately.
  • Applications for the credit program are currently under development and will be made available by the City Engineering Department by December 1, 2013.

The fee amount owed depends upon the size of the property and the percentage of impervious area such as paving and rooftops.  A Percent Impervious Factor (PIF) as defined in the ordinance has been developed for various types of properties.  To arrive at the fee owed, multiply a property area by the PIF and then by the unit rate which is currently set at $15/1,000 square feet of impervious area per year.  

§ 28-31. CREDITS.

A. Generally. The stormwater management utility fee for commercial lots may be reduced through the use of credits when an investment in on-site stormwater management system results in a reduced impact on the public stormwater management system. Residential lots (single family dwellings, townhouse dwellings, multifamily dwellings, and condominiums) are not eligible for credits, except for those properties where stormwater management has been provided through ESD to the MEP.

B. Amount of credit. The City Engineer shall determine the amount of the credit based on the extent of runoff control provided by the on-site stormwater management system, as further described in this section and the administrative regulations.

C. Application. A property owner seeking credits against the stormwater management utility fee shall submit an application, including an administrative fee as established by the Board of Aldermen, in accordance with the requirements set forth in the administrative regulations.

D.  Basis. The amount of a credit is a percentage of the amount of impervious surface area draining to the private stormwater management facility, as specified in subsections (e) through (g) of this section.

E. Previous standards credit. An eligible structural management facility that does not meet the 2000 Design Standards may receive a maximum cumulative credit of 20% against the utility fee.

  1. A 10% credit will be applied against the utility fee if the stormwater management        facility provides stormwater quality control; and
  2. A 10% credit will be applied against the utility fee if the stormwater management        facility provides stormwater quantity control.

F. 2000 design standards credit. An eligible structural management facility that meets the 2000 Design Standards may receive a maximum cumulative credit of 50% against the utility fee.

  1. A 25% credit will be applied if the facility provides stormwater quality control for       water quality volume 0JVQv); and
  2. A 25% credit will be applied if the facility provides stormwater quantity control for channel protection storage volume (CPv).

G. ESD to the MEP credit. Any property for which stormwater management has been provided through ESD to the MEP may receive a maximum cumulative credit of 60% against the utility fee.

(1) A 50% credit will be applied if the full ESD volume is treated through a combination of ESD and structural management practices.

(2) An additional 10% credit will be applied if the full ESD volume is treated solely
through ESD practices.

City of Frederick Stormwater Documents