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Town of Lancaster, MA
Worcester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Lancaster as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Outdoor water use — See Ch. 211, Art. I.
Wetlands protection — See Ch. 215.
Zoning — See Ch. 220.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 301.
Stormwater management rules and regulations — See Ch. 305.
Wetlands protection rules and regulations — See Ch. 306.
[Adopted 10-15-2007 STM by Art. 5]
A. 
The Town of Lancaster hereby determines that:
(1) 
Land development projects and other land use conversions, and their associated changes to land cover, permanently alter the hydrologic response of local watersheds and increase stormwater runoff rates and volumes, which in turn have led to increased flooding, stream channel erosion, and sediment transport and deposition, and decreased groundwater recharge.
(2) 
As the area of house and building roofs, parking lots and road surfaces increase, the rate of stormwater runoff from these surfaces increases, along with the preponderance of greater flooding. Unregulated stormwater runoff from historic development has led to the flooding we see today.
(3) 
Land development projects and other land use conversions also contribute to increased nonpoint source pollution and degradation of receiving waters.
(4) 
The impacts of post-development stormwater runoff quantity and quality can adversely affect public safety, public and private property, drinking water supplies, groundwater resources, recreation, aquatic habitats, fish and other aquatic life, property values and other uses of lands and waters.
(5) 
These adverse impacts can be controlled and minimized through the regulation of stormwater runoff quantity and quality from new development and redevelopment, by the use of both structural and nonstructural best management practices.
(6) 
Localities in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are required to comply with a number of both state and federal laws, regulations and permits which require a locality to address the impacts of post-development stormwater runoff quality and nonpoint source pollution.
(7) 
The United States Environmental Protection Agency has determined that it is in the public interest to regulate post-development stormwater runoff discharges in order to control and minimize increases in stormwater runoff rates and volumes, flooding, post-construction soil erosion and sedimentation, stream channel erosion, and nonpoint source pollution associated with post-development stormwater runoff.
B. 
Therefore, the Town of Lancaster has established this Stormwater Management Bylaw to provide reasonable guidance for the regulation of post-development stormwater runoff for the purpose of protecting local water resources from degradation. This bylaw regulates the post-construction stormwater controls for both new and redevelopment projects.
A. 
The purpose of the bylaw is to protect, maintain and enhance the public health, safety, environment and general welfare by establishing minimum requirements and procedures to control the adverse effects of increased post-development stormwater runoff, flooding and nonpoint source pollution associated with new development and redevelopment and to comply with Phase II NPDES stormwater requirements. It has been determined that proper management of post-development stormwater runoff will minimize flood damage to the public and private property and infrastructure, safeguard the public health, safety, environment and general welfare of the public, protect water and aquatic resources, and promote groundwater recharge to protect surface and groundwater drinking supplies.
B. 
The objectives of this bylaw are:
(1) 
Establish decisionmaking processes surrounding land development activities that protect the integrity of the watershed and preserve the health of water resources;
(2) 
Require that new development, redevelopment and all land conversion activities result in after-development runoff characteristics that are equal to or less than the predevelopment runoff characteristics in order to reduce flooding, stream bank erosion, siltation, nonpoint source pollution, property damage, and to maintain the integrity of stream channels and aquatic habitats;
(3) 
Establish minimum post-development stormwater management standards and design criteria for the regulation and control of stormwater runoff quantity and quality; establish minimum design criteria for the protection of properties and aquatic resources downstream from land development and land conversion activities from damages due to increases in volume, velocity, frequency, duration, and peak flow rate of stormwater runoff; and establish minimum design criteria for measures to minimize nonpoint source pollution from stormwater runoff which would otherwise degrade water quality;
(4) 
Establish design and application criteria for the construction and use of structural stormwater control facilities that can be used to meet the minimum post-development stormwater management standards;
(5) 
Encourage the use of nonstructural stormwater management measures and better site design practices or "low-impact development practices," such as reducing impervious cover and the preservation of green space and other natural areas, to the maximum extent practicable; and coordinate site design plans, including green space, with the Town of Lancaster's design guidelines;
(6) 
Establish provisions for the long-term responsibility for and maintenance of structural stormwater control facilities and nonstructural stormwater management practices to ensure that they continue to function as designed, are maintained, and post no threat to public safety;
(7) 
Establish provisions to ensure there is an adequate funding mechanism, including financial security or surety, for the proper review, inspection and long-term maintenance of stormwater facilities implemented under this bylaw;
(8) 
Establish administrative procedures and fees for the submission, review, approval or disapproval of stormwater management plans, the inspection of approved active development projects, and for long-term follow-up inspection to ensure ongoing care of approved facilities.
(9) 
Establish the Town of Lancaster's legal authority to ensure compliance with the provisions of this bylaw through inspection, monitoring and enforcement.
C. 
Nothing in the bylaw is intended to replace the requirements of Chapter 215, Wetlands Protection, of the Code of the Town of Lancaster or any other bylaw or regulations that may be adopted by the Town of Lancaster, or any state or federal requirement, law, regulation or policy. Any activity subject to the provisions of this bylaw must comply with the requirements of all other applicable laws and regulations.
The definitions contained herein apply to issuance of a stormwater management permit (SMP) established by the Town of Lancaster Stormwater Management Bylaw. Terms not defined in this section shall be construed according to their customary and usual meaning unless the context indicates a special or technical meaning.
ALTERATION
Any activity which will measurably change the ability of a ground surface area to absorb water or will change existing surface drainage patterns. Alteration may be similarly represented as "alteration of drainage characteristics" and "conducting land disturbance activities." Such changes include change from distributed runoff to confined, discrete discharge; change in the volume of runoff from the area; change in the peak rate of runoff from the area; and change in the recharge to groundwater on the area.
APPLICANT
"Applicant" shall refer to a property owner or agent of a property owner who has filed a stormwater management plan.
BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES (BMP)
Structural, nonstructural and managerial techniques that are recognized to be the most effective and practical means to prevent and/or reduce increases in stormwater volumes and flows, reduce point source and nonpoint source pollution, and promote stormwater quality and protection of the environment. "Structural" BMPs are devices that are engineered and constructed to provide temporary storage and treatment of stormwater runoff. "Nonstructural" BMPs are natural measures to reduce pollution levels, do not require extensive construction efforts, and/or promote pollutant reduction by eliminating the pollutant source.
BUILDING
A building shall refer to any structure, either temporary or permanent, having walls and a roof, designed for the shelter of any person, animal or property, and occupying more than 100 square feet of area.
CHANNEL
A natural or artificial watercourse with a definite bed and banks that conducts continuously or periodically flowing water.
CLEAN WATER ACT
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. § 1251 et seq.) and as it is amended from time to time.
CLEARING
Any activity that removes the vegetative surface cover. Clearing activities generally include grubbing activity as defined below.
DETENTION
The temporary storage of storm runoff in a stormwater management facility, with the goals of controlling peak discharge rates and providing gravity settling of pollutants.
DEVELOPER
A person who undertakes land disturbance activities.
DEVELOPMENT
The modification of land to accommodate a new use or expansion of use, usually involving construction.
DISCHARGE OF POLLUTANTS
The addition from any source of any pollutant or combination of pollutants into the storm drain or into waters of the United States or commonwealth from any source.
DISTURBANCE OF LAND
Any action, including clearing and grubbing, that causes a change in the position, location, or arrangement of soil, sand, rock, gravel or similar earth material.
DRAINAGEWAY
Any channel that conveys surface runoff throughout the site.
EROSION
The wearing away of the land surface by natural or artificial forces such as wind, water, ice, gravity or vehicle traffic and the subsequent detachment and transportation of soil particles.
EROSION AND SEDIMENTATION CONTROL PLAN
A document containing narrative, drawings and details developed by a qualified professional engineer (PE) or a certified professional in erosion and sedimentation control (CPESC), which includes best management practices or equivalent measures designed to control surface runoff, erosion and sedimentation during pre-construction and construction related land disturbance activities.
EROSION CONTROL
A measure that prevents erosion.
GRADING
Changing the level or shape of the ground surface.
GROUNDWATER
Water beneath the surface of the ground.
GRUBBING
The act of clearing land surface by digging up roots and stumps.
IMPERVIOUS SURFACE
Any material or structure on or above the ground that prevents water infiltration to the underlying soil. "Impervious surface" includes, without limitation, roads, paved parking lots, sidewalks, rooftops, compacted soils, hard-packed gravel driveways and similar surfaces.
INFILTRATION
The process of percolating stormwater into the subsoil.
LAND DISTURBANCE ACTIVITY
Any activity which changes the volume or peak flow discharge rate of rainfall from the land surface. This may include the grading, digging, cutting, scraping, or excavating of soil, placement of fill materials, paving, construction, substantial removal of vegetation, or any activity which bares soil or rock or involves the diversion or piping of any natural or man-made watercourse.
LANDOWNER
The legal or beneficial owner of land, including those holding the right to purchase or lease the land, or any other person holding property rights in the land.
LOW IMPACT DEVELOPMENT (LID)
An approach to environmentally friendly land use planning. It includes a suite of landscaping and design techniques designed to maintain the natural, predeveloped ability of a site to manage rainfall. LID techniques capture water on site, filter it through vegetation, and allow seeping into the ground rather than being lost as surface runoff so that the local water table can recharge. An important LID principle embodies the concept that rainwater is a resource and not merely a superfluous waste product.
MASSACHUSETTS STORMWATER MANAGEMENT POLICY
The policy issued by the Department of Environmental Protection, as amended, that coordinates the requirements prescribed by state regulations promulgated under the authority of the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act, MGL c. 131, § 40, and Massachusetts Clean Waters Act, MGL c. 21, §§ 23 to 56. The policy addresses stormwater impacts through implementation of performance standards to reduce or prevent pollutants from reaching water bodies and control the quantity of runoff from a site.
MUNICIPAL STORM DRAIN SYSTEM or MUNICIPAL SEPARATE STORM SEWER SYSTEM (MS4)
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 Lancaster.
NONPOINT SOURCE POLLUTION
Pollution from many diffuse sources caused by rainfall or snowmelt moving over and through the ground. As the runoff moves, it picks up and carries away natural and human-made pollutants, finally depositing them into water resource areas.
NONSTORMWATER DISCHARGE
Discharge to the storm drain not comprised entirely of stormwater.
OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE PLAN
A plan describing the functional, financial and organizational mechanisms for the ongoing operation and maintenance of a stormwater management system to ensure that it continues to function as designed.
OUTFALL
The point at which stormwater flows out from a discernible, confined point source or discrete conveyance into waters of the commonwealth.
PERSON
An individual, partnership, association, firm, company, rust, corporation, agency, authority, department or political subdivision of the commonwealth or federal government, to the extent permitted by law, and any officer, employee, or agent of such person.
POINT SOURCE
Any discernible, confined and discrete conveyance, including but not limited to, any pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, well, discrete fissure, or container from which pollutants are or may be discharged.
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 sewage treatment works or waters of the commonwealth. Pollutants shall include, without limitation:
A. 
Paints, varnishes and solvents;
B. 
Oil, antifreeze and other automotive fluids;
C. 
Nonhazardous liquid and solid wastes and yard wastes;
D. 
Refuse, rubbish, garbage, litter, or other discarded or abandoned objects, ordnances, 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.
POST-DEVELOPMENT
Conditions that reasonably may be expected or anticipated to exist after completion of the land development activity on a specific site or tract of land. "Post-development" refers to conditions after culmination of a new development or redevelopment project and does not depict conditions during the construction phases of a project.
PREDEVELOPMENT
The conditions that exist at the time that plans for the land development of a tract of land are submitted to the Stormwater Authority. Where phased development or phased plan approval occurs (preliminary grading, roads, utilities, etc.), the existing conditions at the time prior to the first plan submission shall establish predevelopment conditions.
RECHARGE
The replenishment of underground water reserves.
REDEVELOPMENT
Development, rehabilitation, expansion, demolition or phased projects that disturb the ground surface or increase the impervious area on previously developed sites.
RESOURCE AREA
Any area protected under the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act,[1] the Massachusetts Rivers Act, or Chapter 215, Wetlands Protection, of the Code of the Town of Lancaster.
RUNOFF
Rainfall, snowmelt or irrigation water flowing over the ground surface.
SEDIMENT
Mineral or organic soil material that is transported by wind or water from its origin to another location; the product of erosion processes.
SEDIMENT CONTROL
Measures that prevent eroded sediment from leaving the site or entering off-site drainage structures.
SITE
A parcel of land or a contiguous combination thereof, where grading work is performed as a single unified operation.
STABILIZATION
The use, singly or in combination, of mechanical, structural or vegetative methods to prevent or retard erosion.
START OF CONSTRUCTION
The first land-disturbing activity associated with a development, including but not limited to, land preparation such as clearing, grading and filling; installation of streets and walkways; excavation for basements, footings, piers or foundations; erection of temporary forms; and installation of accessory buildings such as garages.
STORMWATER
Stormwater runoff, snow melt runoff, and surface water runoff and drainage.
STOP-WORK ORDER
An order issues which requires that all construction activity on a site will be stopped.
STORMWATER AUTHORITY
The Stormwater Authority for Town of Lancaster shall be the Planning Board or its authorized agent(s). The Stormwater Authority is responsible for coordinating the review, approval and permit process as defined in this bylaw. Boards and/or departments may participate in the review process as defined in this bylaw or the Stormwater Regulations adopted by the Planning Board of the Town of Lancaster. The Conservation Agent and the Building Commissioner are authorized to act as agents of the Planning Board in enforcing this bylaw.
STORMWATER MANAGEMENT PERMIT
A permit issued by the Stormwater Authority, after review of an application, plans, calculations and other supporting documents, that is designed to protect the Town from deleterious effects of uncontrolled or untreated stormwater runoff.
STORMWATER MANAGEMENT PLAN
A document containing narrative, drawings and details prepared by a qualified professional engineer (PE), a professional public land surveyor (PLS), or a certified professional in erosion and sedimentation control (CPESC), that includes structural and nonstructural best management practices (BMPs) to manage and treat stormwater runoff generated from regulated development activity. A stormwater management plan also includes an operation and maintenance plan describing maintenance requirements for structural BMPs.
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, by-product or waste product.
WATERCOURSE
Any body of water, including but not limited to, lakes, ponds, rivers and streams.
[1]
Editor's Note: See MGL c. 131, § 40.
This bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rules statutes, and pursuant to the regulations of the Federal Clean Water Act found at 40 CFR 122.34, and as authorized by the residents of the Town of Lancaster at Town Meeting, dated October 15, 2007.
No person shall undertake a regulated construction activity, as described below, without a stormwater management permit from the Planning Board.
A. 
Regulated activities shall include any of the following:
(1) 
Land disturbance of greater than one acre (43,560 square feet), associated with construction or reconstruction of structures.
(2) 
Development or redevelopment involving multiple, separate activities in discontinuous locations or on different schedules if the activities are part of a larger common plan of development that together disturbs one acre or more.
(3) 
Paving or other change in surface material over an area of one acre or more causing a significant reduction of permeability or increase in runoff.
(4) 
Construction of a new drainage system or alteration of an existing drainage system or conveyance serving a drainage area of more than one acre.
(5) 
Any other activity altering the surface of an area exceeding one acre that will, or may, result in increased stormwater runoff flowing from the property into a public way, the municipal storm drain system, or to a watercourse or wetland. An exception is the removal of tree cover when the stumps are left in place.
B. 
Exempt activities:
(1) 
Normal maintenance and improvement of land in agricultural or forestry use as defined by the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act[1] and its regulations.
[1]
Editor's Note: See MGL c. 131, § 40.
(2) 
Normal maintenance of existing landscaping, gardens or lawn areas associated with a single-family dwelling, provided such maintenance does not include the addition of more than 30 cubic yards of soil material, construction of walls, alteration of existing grades by more than one foot in elevation, or alteration of drainage patterns.
(3) 
The construction of fencing, irrespective of materials used, that will not alter existing terrain or drainage patterns.
(4) 
Construction, maintenance and operation of utilities (gas, water, sewer, electric, telephone, etc.) other than drainage that will not alter terrain or drainage patterns.
(5) 
Those activities that are subject to the jurisdiction under the Wetlands Protection Act and demonstrate compliance with the Massachusetts Stormwater Management Policy as reflected in an order of conditions issued by the Lancaster Conservation Commission, are exempt from compliance of this bylaw.
(6) 
Agriculture, horticulture, floriculture and viticulture exempted from prohibition by MGL c. 40A, § 3, on parcels of property of five acres in size and larger.
The Lancaster Planning Board shall administer, implement and enforce this bylaw. Any powers granted to or duties imposed upon the Planning Board may be delegated in writing by the Planning Board to its employees or agents (who may include the Conservation Agent and the Building Commissioner).
A. 
The Lancaster Planning Board may adopt and periodically amend stormwater rules and regulations relating to receipt and content of stormwater management applications, review time periods, permit terms, conditions, additional definitions, enforcement, fees (including application, inspection, and/or consultant fees), procedures, administration and enforcement of this bylaw subsequent to a majority vote of a meeting of the Planning Board and after conducting a public hearing to receive comments on the proposed regulations and/or any proposed revisions. Such hearing dates shall be advertised in a newspaper of general local circulation at least seven calendar days before a hearing date.
B. 
Failure by the Planning Board to promulgate such rules and regulations shall not have the effect of suspending or invalidating this bylaw.
Permit procedures and requirements shall be defined and included as part of any rules and regulations promulgated as permitted under § 170-7 of this bylaw.
A. 
Filing an application for a stormwater management permit grants the Planning Board, or its agent, permission to enter the site of the land-disturbing activity, as permitted by law, to verify the information in the application and to inspect for compliance with permit conditions.
B. 
The Planning Board, in its discretion, may conduct an inspection at any stage of land-disturbing activity to ensure compliance with the terms of this bylaw and any permit. The Planning Board also may require the applicant to submit self-inspection reports at any stage of development or post-development. The Planning Board may inspect sites before construction, weekly during construction, and within 24 hours of a rainstorm of two inches or greater.
A. 
The Planning Board by regulation shall promulgate an application fee schedule for stormwater management permit applications and completion certificates. The fee schedule shall be reasonably related to the costs of processing, reviewing and acting upon the application, including review of the application by a professional engineer or other consultant retained by the Board to advise it on technical, legal, economic, or other aspects of the proposed work. The fee specified in such a fee schedule shall be made payable to the Town of Lancaster and shall accompany the permit application or request for certificate of completion. The Planning Board may require an additional fee for review of any change in or alteration from an approved permit.
B. 
Said fee shall be paid into a revolving account set up by the Town Treasurer and may be expended by the Planning Board for the purpose allocated without further appropriation in accordance with the provisions of MGL c. 44, § 53E 1/2.
A. 
The Planning Board may waive strict compliance with any requirement of this bylaw or the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder, where such action:
(1) 
Is allowed by federal, state and local statutes and/or regulations;
(2) 
Is in the public interest;
(3) 
Is not inconsistent with the purpose and intent of this bylaw.
B. 
Any applicant may submit a written request to be granted such a waiver. Such a waiver request shall be accompanied by an explanation or documentation supporting the waiver request and demonstrating that strict application of this bylaw does not further the purposes or objectives of this bylaw.
C. 
All waiver requests shall be discussed by the Planning Board and a decision will be made by the Planning Board within 30 days of receiving the waiver request.
D. 
If, in the Planning Board's opinion, additional time or information is required for review of a waiver request, the Planning Board may continue consideration of the waiver request to a date certain announced at the meeting. In the event the applicant objects to a continuance, or fails to provide the requested information, the waiver request shall be denied.
The Planning Board, or an authorized agent of the Planning Board, shall enforce this bylaw, its regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
A. 
Civil relief. If a person violates the provisions of this bylaw, regulations, permit, notice or order issued thereunder, the Planning Board 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.
B. 
Orders.
(1) 
The Planning Board, or its authorized agent, may issue a written order to enforce the provisions of this bylaw, or the regulations thereof, which may include:
(a) 
A requirement to cease and desist from the land-disturbing activity until there is compliance with the bylaw or provisions of the stormwater management permit;
(b) 
Maintenance, installation or performance of additional erosion and sediment control measures;
(c) 
Monitoring, analyses, and reporting;
(d) 
Remediation of erosion and sedimentation resulting directly or indirectly from the land-disturbing activity;
(e) 
Compliance with the stormwater management plan and permit;
(f) 
Repair, maintenance or replacement of the stormwater management system or portions thereof in accordance with the operation and maintenance plan.
(g) 
Remediation of adverse impact resulting directly or indirectly from malfunction of the stormwater management system.
(2) 
If the enforcing person determines that abatement or remediation of erosion and sedimentation is required, the order shall set forth a deadline by which such abatement or remediation must be completed.
C. 
Criminal penalty. Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, order or permit issued thereunder, shall be punished by a fine of not more than the amount set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article II, Fines, of the Code of the Town of Lancaster. Each day or part thereunder that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
D. 
Noncriminal disposition. As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the Town may elect to utilize the noncriminal disposition procedure set forth in MGL c. 40, § 21D, which has been adopted by the Town in the Code of the Town of Lancaster Chapter 1, Article I, Noncriminal Disposition, in which case the Planning Board or authorized agent shall be the enforcing person. The penalty for each violation shall be fines in the amounts set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article II, Fines, of the Town Code. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
[Amended 5-5-2008 ATM by Art. 13]
E. 
Appeals. The decision or orders of the Planning Board shall be final. Further relief shall be to a court of competent jurisdiction.
F. 
Remedies not exclusive. The remedies listed are not exclusive of any other remedies available under any applicable federal, state or local law.
The Planning Board, within its available resources, shall provide education programs on soil erosion, sediment control and stormwater management to the general public and persons regulated by this bylaw. The Planning Board shall provide guidelines and advice to ease the permit application process and foster acceptance of good erosion control and stormwater management practices.
If any provision, paragraph, sentence, or clause of this bylaw is held invalid for any reason by a court of competent jurisdiction, all other provisions shall continue in full force and effect.
This bylaw shall take effect upon approval of the Attorney General, and after the bylaw has been posted, in accordance with MGL c. 40, § 32.
[Adopted 10-15-2007 STM by Art. 6]
A. 
The purpose of this bylaw is to eliminate nonstormwater discharges to the Town of Lancaster's municipal storm drain system. Nonstormwater discharges contain contaminants and supply additional flows to the Town's storm drain system. Nonstormwater discharges 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 storm drain system is necessary for the protection of the Town's natural resources, municipal facilities, general public health and safety, and the environment.
C. 
The objects of this bylaw are:
(1) 
To prevent pollutants from entering the municipal storm drain system;
(2) 
To prohibit illicit connections and unauthorized discharges to the storm drain system;
(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.
The definitions contained herein apply to the administration and enforcement of this Illicit Discharge Bylaw. Terms not defined in this section shall be construed according to their customary and usual meaning unless the context indicates a special or technical meaning.
CLEAN WATER ACT
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. § 1251 et seq.) and as it is amended from time to time.
DETENTION
The temporary storage of storm runoff in a stormwater management facility, with the goals of controlling peak discharge rates and providing gravity settling of pollutants.
DEVELOPMENT
The modification of land to accommodate a new use or expansion of use, usually involving construction.
DISCHARGE OF POLLUTANTS
The addition from any source of any pollutant or combination of pollutants into the municipal storm drain system or into waters of the United States or commonwealth from any source.
GRADING
Changing the level or shape of the ground surface.
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, permitted 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 in § 170-19 of this Lancaster Illicit Discharge Bylaw. The term does not include a discharge in compliance with an NPDES stormwater discharge permit or resulting from fire fighting activities that are exempted.
MUNICIPAL STORM DRAIN SYSTEM or MUNICIPAL SEPARATE STORM SEWER SYSTEM (MS4)
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 Lancaster.
NONSTORMWATER DISCHARGE
Discharge to the storm drain not comprised entirely of stormwater.
PERSON
An individual, partnership, association, firm, company, trust, corporation, agency, authority, department or political subdivision of the commonwealth or federal government, to the extent permitted by law, and any officer, employee, or agent of such person.
POINT SOURCE
Any discernible, confined and discrete conveyance, including but not limited to, any pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, well, discrete fissure, or container from which pollutants are or may be discharged.
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 sewage treatment works or waters of the commonwealth. Pollutants shall include, without limitation:
A. 
Paints, varnishes and solvents;
B. 
Oil, antifreeze and other automotive fluids;
C. 
Nonhazardous liquid and solid wastes and yard wastes;
D. 
Refuse, rubbish, garbage, litter, or other discarded or abandoned objects, ordnances, 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.
RUNOFF
Rainfall, snowmelt or irrigation water flowing over the ground surface.
SITE
A parcel of land or a contiguous combination thereof, where grading work is performed as a single unified operation.
STORMWATER
Stormwater runoff, snow melt runoff, and surface water runoff and drainage.
WATERCOURSE
Any body of water, including but not limited to, lakes, ponds, rivers and streams.
This bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rule statutes, and pursuant to the regulations of the Federal Clean Water Act found at 40 CFR 122.34 and as authorized by the residents of the Town of Lancaster at Town Meeting, dated October 15, 2007.
A. 
Prohibited activities shall include, but not be limited to:
(1) 
Illicit discharges. No person shall dump, discharge, cause or allow to be discharged any pollutant or nonstormwater discharge into the municipal storm drain system, into a watercourse, or into waters of the United States and/or commonwealth.
(2) 
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.
(3) 
Obstruction of the 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 approval from the Stormwater Authority.
B. 
Exempt activities. The following nonstormwater discharges or flows are considered exempt from the prohibition of nonstormwater discharges, provided that the source is not a significant contributor of pollution to the municipal storm drain system:
(1) 
Waterline flushing;
(2) 
Flow from potable water sources;
(3) 
Springs;
(4) 
Natural flow from riparian habitats and wetlands;
(5) 
Diverted stream flow;
(6) 
Rising groundwater;
(7) 
Uncontaminated groundwater infiltration as defined in 40 CFR 35.2005(20), or uncontaminated pumped groundwater;
(8) 
Water from exterior foundation drains, footing drains (not including active groundwater dewatering systems), crawl space pumps, or air-conditioning condensation; also water from sump pumps and other pumps that remove uncontaminated floodwaters from basements (NOTE: Sump pumps that connect to the municipal storm drain system must file an application with the Board of Public Works);
(9) 
Discharge from landscape irrigation or lawn watering;
(10) 
Water from individual residential car washing;
(11) 
Water from individual residences used for washing walkways, patios, house siding, windows, or similar house-related activities;
(12) 
Discharge from dechlorinated swimming pool water (less than one ppm chlorine) provided the water is allowed to stand for one week prior to draining and the pool is drained in such a way as not to cause a nuisance;
(13) 
Dye testing, providing verbal notification is given to the Board of Public Works prior to the time of the test;
(14) 
Nonstormwater 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 permit, waiver, or order and applicable laws and regulations;
(15) 
Discharge for which advanced written approval is received from the Stormwater Authority as necessary to protect public health, safety, welfare and the environment;
(16) 
Discharge resulting from municipal street sweeping activities; and
(17) 
Any other source of nonstormwater discharges or flows that has applied for, and received, a written determination from the Board of Public Works that the source is not likely to be a significant contributor of pollution to the municipal storm drain system.
C. 
Special exemptions.
(1) 
Discharge or flow resulting from fire-fighting activities.
(2) 
Discharge or flow resulting from municipal ice and snow control operations.
The Lancaster Board of Public Works shall administer, implement and enforce this bylaw. Any powers granted to or duties imposed upon the Board of Public Works may be delegated in writing by the Board of Public Works to its employees or agents.
The Board of Public Works may adopt and periodically amend regulations relating to additional definitions, enforcement, fees (including inspections, costs of chemical and/or biological analyses, and/or consultant fees), procedures, administration and enforcement of this bylaw subsequent to a majority vote of a meeting of the Board of Public Works and after conducting a public hearing to receive comments on the proposed regulations and/or any proposed revisions. Such hearing dates shall be advertised in a newspaper of general local circulation at least seven calendar days before a hearing date. After public notice and hearing, the Board of Public Works may promulgate rules and regulations to effectuate the purposes of this bylaw. Failure by the Board of Public Works to promulgate such rules and regulations shall not have the effect of suspending or invalidating this bylaw.
The Board of Public Works may suspend municipal storm drain 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 public health, safety, welfare or the environment. In the event any person fails to comply with an emergency suspension order, the Authority may take all reasonable steps to prevent or minimize harm to the public health, safety, welfare or the environment.
A. 
Any spills or releases that require notification under local, state or federal law will be the responsibility of the person responsible for a facility or operation, or for an emergency response for a facility or operation (i.e., construction). In the event of a spill or release which may result in a discharge of pollutants or nonstormwater discharge to the municipal storm drain system, waters of the United States and/or waters of the commonwealth, the responsible parties, potentially responsible parties or any person or persons managing a site or facility shall take all necessary steps to ensure containment, and remediate any municipal storm drains that have been impacted. However, if in the opinion of the Board of Public Works there is an excessive amount of pollutants in the storm drain system, the Authority can require remediation by the responsible party, regardless of other state or federal regulations.
B. 
In the event of a release of oil or hazardous materials, the person shall immediately notify the Municipal Fire and Police Departments and the Department of Public Works. In the event of a release of nonhazardous material, the reporting person shall notify the Board of Public Works no later than the next business day. The reporting person shall provide the Board of Public Works 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 Board of Public Works, or an authorized agent of the Board of Public Works, shall enforce this bylaw, its regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
A. 
Civil relief. If a person violates the provisions of this bylaw, regulations, permit, notice or order issued thereunder, the Board of Public Works 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.
B. 
Orders.
(1) 
The Board of Public Works, or an authorized agent of the Board of Public Works, may issue a written order to enforce the provisions of this bylaw, which may include:
(a) 
Elimination of illicit connections or discharges to the storm drain system;
(b) 
Performance of monitoring, analyses and reporting;
(c) 
That unlawful discharges, practices or operations shall cease and desist; and
(d) 
Remediation of contamination in connection therewith.
(2) 
If the enforcing person determines that abatement or remediation of contaminations is required and is the responsibility of the property owner, the order shall set forth a deadline by which such abatement or remediation must be completed.
C. 
Criminal penalty. Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, order or permit issued thereunder, shall be punished by a fine of not more than the amount set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article II, Fines, of the Code of the Town of Lancaster. Each day or part thereunder that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
D. 
Noncriminal disposition. As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the Town may elect to utilize the noncriminal disposition procedure set forth in MGL c. 40, § 21D, which has been adopted by the Town in the Code of the Town of Lancaster Chapter 1, Article I, Noncriminal Disposition, in which case the Board of Public Works or authorized agent shall be the enforcing person. The penalty for each violation shall be fines in the amounts set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article II, Fines, of the Town Code. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
[Amended 5-5-2008 ATM by Art. 13]
E. 
Entry to perform duties under this bylaw. To the extent permitted by state law, or if authorized by the owner or other party in control of the property, the Board of Public Works, its agents, officers and employees may enter upon privately owned property for the purpose of performing their duties and may make or cause to be made such examinations, surveys or sampling as the Board of Public Works deems reasonably necessary.
F. 
Appeals. The decision or orders of the Board of Public Works shall be final. Further relief shall be to a court of competent jurisdiction.
G. 
Remedies not exclusive. The remedies listed are not exclusive of any other remedies available under any applicable federal, state or local law.
The Board of Public Works, within its available resources, shall provide educational programs on illicit discharge to the municipal storm drain system to the general public and persons regulated by this bylaw.
If any provision, paragraph, sentence, or clause of this bylaw is held invalid for any reason by a court of competent jurisdiction, all other provisions shall continue in full force and effect.
Residential property owners shall have 60 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.
This bylaw shall take effect upon approval of the Attorney General, and after the bylaw has been posted, in accordance with MGL c. 40, § 32.