County of Arlington
arlington stormwater laws & regulations
Arlington County regulation is compliant with the Virginia Stormwater Management Program (VSMP/NPDES) through municipal regulation Arlington County Code Chapter 60. The county’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) requires Arlington to administer and enforce compliance with stormwater discharge permits in an effort to decrease stormwater pollutants and increase overall water quality. Arlington County Department of Environment (DE) requires annual inspection reports for stormwater management facilities to be submitted online.
60-5. Stormwater Permit Requirement; Exemptions.
A. Except as provided herein, no person may engage in any land-disturbing activity, including
Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act land disturbing activities, until a VSMP authority permit has been issued by the Administrator in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
B. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter, the following activities are exempt, unless otherwise required by federal law:
(1) Permitted surface or deep mining operations and projects, or oil and gas operations and projects conducted under the provisions of Title 45.1 of the Code of Virginia;
(2) Clearing of lands specifically for agricultural purposes and the management, tilling, planting, or harvesting of agricultural, horticultural, or forest crops, livestock feedlot operations, or as additionally set forth by the State Board in regulations, including engineering operations as follows: construction of terraces, terrace outlets, check dams, desilting basins, dikes, ponds, ditches, strip cropping, lister furrowing, contour cultivating, contour furrowing, land drainage, and land irrigation; however, this exception shall not apply to harvesting of forest crops unless the area on which harvesting occurs is reforested artificially or naturally in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 11 (§ 10.1-1100 et seq.) of Title 10.1 of the Code of Virginia or is converted to bona fide agricultural or improved pasture use as described in Subsection B of § 10.1-1163 of Article 9 of Chapter 11 of Title 10.1 of the Code of Virginia;
(3) Land disturbing activities that disturb less than 2,500 square feet of land area, except for land disturbing activities that are part of a larger common plan of development or sale that is one acre or greater;
(4) Discharges to a sanitary sewer or a combined sewer system;
(5) Activities under a State or federal reclamation program to return an abandoned property to an agricultural or open land use;
(6) Routine maintenance that is performed to maintain the original line and grade, hydraulic capacity, or original construction of the project. The paving of an existing road with a compacted or impervious surface and reestablishment of existing associated ditches and shoulders shall be deemed routine maintenance if performed in accordance with this subsection; and
(7) Conducting land-disturbing activities in response to a public emergency where the related work requires immediate authorization to avoid imminent endangerment to human health or the environment. In such situations, the Administrator shall be advised of the disturbance within seven days of commencing the land disturbing activity and compliance with the administrative requirements of subsection A is required within 30 days of commencing the land-disturbing activity. (Ord. No. 14-05, 5-10-14, effective 7-1-14)
60-6. Stormwater Management Program Established; Submission and Approval of Plans. VSMP Authority Permit.
A. Pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:27 of the Code of Virginia, Arlington County hereby establishes a Virginia stormwater management program for land-disturbing activities and adopts the applicable Regulations that specify standards and specifications for VSMPs promulgated by the State Board for the purposes set out in Section 60-3 of this chapter. The Arlington County Board hereby designates the Director of the Department of Environmental Services or designee as the Administrator of the Virginia stormwater management program.
B. No VSMP authority permit shall be issued by the Administrator, until the following items have been submitted to and approved by the Administrator as prescribed herein:
(1) A permit application that includes a General permit registration statement, except that Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act land-disturbing activities do not require a General permit but shall be subject the technical criteria set forth in Section 60-11;
(2) An erosion and sediment control plan approved in accordance with the Chapter 57 of the Arlington County Code;
(3) A pollution prevention plan that meets the requirements of 60-9 of this chapter;
(4) A stormwater management plan that meets the requirements of 60-8 of this chapter;
(5) Evidence of General permit coverage is obtained, except for Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act land-disturbing activities;
(6) The requirements of Chapter 61 of the Arlington County Code must be satisfied;
(7) The fees required to be paid pursuant to the Arlington County Code and State Fee Schedule (as set forth in 9VAC25-870-820 through 830), are received, and a reasonable performance bond, if required, pursuant to Section 60-18 of this chapter has been submitted; and
(8) Unless and until the permit application and attendant materials and supporting documentation demonstrate that all land clearing, construction, disturbance, land development and drainage will be done according to the approved permit.
C. No land disturbance activity, building or other local permit shall be issued for a property unless a VSMP authority permit has been issued by the Administrator, unless the phase of construction does not yet require a stormwater management plan. (Ord. No. 14-05, 5-10-14, effective 7-1-14)
60-13. Long Term Maintenance of Permanent Stormwater Facilities.
A. Provision for long-term responsibility for and maintenance of stormwater management facilities and other techniques specified to manage the quality and quantity of runoff are required. Such requirements shall be set forth in an instrument as follows:
(1) Be submitted to the Administrator for review and approval and recordation prior to the approval of the stormwater management plan;
(2) Be stated to run with the land;
(3) Provide for all necessary access to the property for purposes of maintenance and regulatory inspections;
(4) Provide for inspections and maintenance and the submission of inspection and maintenance reports to the Administrator;
(5) Be enforceable by all appropriate governmental parties;
(6) Ensure that measures could be taken by the County to maintain the stormwater management facilities or perform inspections at the owner's expense should the owner fail to maintain the stormwater management facilities in good working order in accordance with the maintenance specifications in the agreement or perform the periodic inspections required by the agreement;
(7) Provide that in the event the County, pursuant to the agreement, performs work of any nature or expends any funds in performance of said work for labor, use of equipment, supplies, materials, and the like, the owner will reimburse the County for all costs incurred by the County; and
(8) Provide for liens to be placed on the property should the owner fail to reimburse the County for costs incurred by the County. (Ord. No. 14-05, 5-10-14, effective 7-1-14)
60-14. Monitoring and Inspections.
A. The Administrator shall inspect the land-disturbing activity during construction for:
(1) Compliance with the approved erosion and sediment control plan;
(2) Compliance with the approved stormwater management plan;
(3) Development, updating, and implementation of a pollution prevention plan; and
(4) Development and implementation of any additional control measures necessary to address a TMDL.
B. The Administrator may, at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances, enter any establishment or upon any property, public or private, for the purpose of obtaining information or conducting surveys or investigations necessary in the enforcement of the provisions of this chapter.
C. In accordance with any performance bond with surety, cash escrow, letter of credit, any combination thereof, or such other legal arrangement or instrument, the Administrator may also enter any establishment or upon any property, public or private, for the purpose of initiating or maintaining appropriate actions which are required by the permit conditions associated with a land-disturbing activity when Sca permittee, after proper notice, has failed to take acceptable action within the time specified.
60-17. Enforcement, Violations and Penalties.
A. If the Administrator determines that there is a failure to comply with the VSMP authority permit conditions or determines there is an unauthorized discharge associated with a land disturbing activity, notice shall be served upon the permittee or person responsible for carrying out the permit conditions by any of the following: verbal warnings and inspection reports, notices to comply, notice of violation, and consent special orders.
B. Notices to comply, notice of violation, and consent special orders shall be served by registered or certified mail to the address specified in the permit application or by delivery at the site of the development activities to the agent or employee supervising such activities.
(1) The notice shall specify the measures needed to comply with the permit conditions and shall specify the time within which such measures shall be completed. Upon failure to comply within the time specified, a stop work order may be issued in accordance with Subsection B(2) or the permit may be revoked by the Administrator.
(2) If a permittee or person responsible for carrying out the permit conditions fails to comply with a notice issued in accordance with this Section within the time specified, the Administrator may issue a stop work order requiring the owner, permittee, person responsible for carrying out an approved plan, or the person conducting the land-disturbing activities without an approved plan or required permit to cease all land-disturbing activities until the violation of the permit has ceased, or an approved plan and required permits are obtained, and specified corrective measures have been completed. Such orders shall become effective upon service on the person by certified mail, return receipt requested, sent to his address specified in the land records of the locality, or by personal delivery by an agent of the Administrator. Failure to comply with a stop work order shall constitute a separate violation of this chapter.
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