[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Ashland as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 5-2-2007 ATM, Art. 22]
Regulation of activities that result in the disturbance of land and the creation of stormwater runoff is necessary for the protection of the Town of Ashland to safeguard the health, safety, and welfare of the general public and protect the natural resources of the Town. The purpose of this bylaw is to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Phase II program by preventing or diminishing stormwater impacts by controlling runoff and preventing soil erosion and sedimentation resulting from site construction, development and other circumstances, and eliminating non-stormwater discharges into the Town's municipal storm sewer system.
This bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rule statutes, and pursuant to the federal Clean Water Act found at 40 CFR 122.34.
Nothing in this bylaw is intended to replace the requirements of either the Town of Ashland Wetlands Bylaw, or any other bylaw that has been or may be adopted by the Town of Ashland. Any activity subject to the provisions of the above-cited bylaws must comply with the specifications of each applicable bylaw.
The objectives of this bylaw are to:
Establish decision making processes surrounding land development activities that protect the integrity of the watershed and preserve the health of wetland and water resources;
Require that new development, redevelopment and all land conversion activities maintain the after-development runoff characteristics as equal to or less than the predevelopment runoff characteristics to provide recharge and to reduce flooding, stream bank erosion, siltation, nonpoint source pollution, property damage, and to maintain the integrity of stream channels and aquatic habitats;
Establish minimum construction/alteration and post-development stormwater management standards and design criteria for the regulation and control of stormwater runoff quantity and quality and 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;
Establish design criteria for measures to minimize nonpoint source pollution from stormwater runoff which would otherwise degrade water quality;
Establish design and application criteria for the construction and use of structural stormwater control facilities that can be used to meet the minimum construction/alteration and post-development stormwater management standards and to encourage the use of nonstructural stormwater management, stormwater site design practices or low-impact development practices, such as reducing impervious cover and the preservation of open space and other natural areas, to the maximum extent practicable;
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 pose no threat to public safety;
Establish provisions to ensure there is an adequate funding mechanism, including surety, for the proper review, inspection and long-term maintenance of stormwater facilities implemented as part of this bylaw; and
Establish administrative procedures and fees for the submission, review, approval, or disapproval of stormwater management plans, and for the inspection of approved active projects, and long-term follow up.
As used in this bylaw, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The normal maintenance or improvement of land in agricultural or aquacultural use, as defined by the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act (MGL c. 131, § 40) and its implementing regulations (310 CMR 10.00).
- Any activity that changes the water quality, or the force, quantity, direction, timing or location of runoff flowing from the area and will measurably change the ability of a ground surface area to absorb water. 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. "Alter" may be similarly represented as "alteration of drainage characteristics," and "conducting land disturbance activities."
- Any person, as defined below, requesting a stormwater management permit for proposed land-disturbance activity.
- AUTHORIZED ENFORCEMENT AGENCY
- The Conservation Commission (hereinafter "the Commission") and its employees or agents or other employee of the Town of Ashland shall be in charge of enforcing the requirements of this bylaw.
- BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICE (BMP)
- Structural, nonstructural, vegetative and managerial techniques that are recognized to be the most effective and practical means to reduce erosion and sediment, prevent 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 use natural measures to reduce pollution levels, do not require extensive construction efforts, and/or promote pollutant reduction by eliminating the pollutant source.
- BETTER SITE DESIGN
- Site design approaches and techniques that can reduce a site's impact on the watershed through the use of nonstructural stormwater management practices. "Better site design" includes conserving and protecting natural areas and green space, reducing impervious cover, and using natural features for stormwater management.
- CONSTRUCTION AND WASTE MATERIALS
- Excess or discarded building or construction site materials that may adversely impact water quality, including but not limited to concrete truck washout, chemicals, litter and sanitary waste.
- DISTURBED AREA
- An area, man-made or natural, where the existing condition has been or is proposed to be altered.
- ENVIRONMENTAL SITE MONITOR
- A professional engineer, or other trained professional selected by the Commission and retained by the holder of a stormwater management permit to periodically inspect the work and report to the Commission.
- A condition in which the earth's surface, including soil or rock fragment, is detached and moved away by the action of water, wind, ice, gravity or other natural means.
- Land uses or activities with higher potential pollutant loadings, such as, but not limited to, auto salvage yards, auto fueling facilities, fleet storage yards, commercial parking lots with high-intensity use, road salt storage areas, commercial nurseries and landscaping, outdoor storage and loading areas of hazardous substances, or marinas.
- ILLICIT DISCHARGES
- Any discharge to a stormwater structure, stream, lake, pond, vernal pool, body of water or wetland that is or has not been permitted, waived or exempted by the Town (state and/or federal regulations).
- ISOLATED DEPRESSION SUBJECT TO FLOODING
- An isolated depression or closed basin which serves as a ponding area for runoff or high groundwater which has risen above the ground surface. The basin must confine standing water at least once per year for a two-month period in nondrought conditions to an average depth of six inches and occupy a minimum surface area of 5,000 square feet.
- MASSACHUSETTS STORMWATER MANAGEMENT POLICY
- The policy issued by the Department of Environmental Protection, and 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, § 23-56. 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.
- NEW DEVELOPMENT
- Any construction or land disturbance of a parcel of land that is currently in a natural vegetated state.
- Any individual, group of individuals, association, partnership, corporation, company, business organization, trust, estate, the commonwealth or political subdivision thereof to the extent subject to Town bylaws, administrative agency, public or quasi-public corporation or body, the Town of Ashland, and any other legal entity, its legal representatives, agents, or assigns.
- PHASED DEVELOPMENT
- The method of segmenting and dividing the disturbance, construction or development of a site into smaller areas and/or timeframe (to reduce possible impacts to the site and resource).
- The 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 the phase of a new development or redevelopment project after completion, and does not refer to the construction phase of a project.
- The conditions that exist at the time that plans for the land development of a tract of land are submitted to the Conservation Commission. Where phased development or plan approval occurs (preliminary grading, roads and utilities, etc.), the existing conditions at the time prior to the first plan submission shall establish predevelopment conditions.
- QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL
- A civil engineer registered in Massachusetts, a registered land surveyor, a Massachusetts licensed soil evaluator, a certified professional in erosion and sediment control, a certified professional in stormwater quality, or other person who can satisfactorily demonstrate to the issuing authority proficiency in the field of stormwater management as appropriate to the scope of the project.
- The replenishment of underground water reserves.
- Any construction, alteration, or improvement exceeding land disturbance of 5,000 square feet, where the existing land use is commercial, industrial, institutional, or multifamily residential.
- Rainfall, snowmelt, or irrigation water flowing over the ground surface.
- Solid material, whether mineral or organic, that is in suspension, is transported or has been moved from its site of origin by erosion.
- A process of depositing material that has been suspended and transported in water.
- The vertical rise divided by the horizontal distance and expressed as a fraction or percentage.
- The elimination of any erosion or erosion potential.
- STORMWATER MANAGEMENT HANDBOOK
- Stormwater Management Handbook, Volume One and Volume Two, prepared by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, dated March 1997, as the same may be from time to time revised.
- STORMWATER MANAGEMENT PERMIT (SMP)
- A permit issued for an application that meets a set of predetermined standards which is designed to protect the environment of the Town from the deleterious effects of uncontrolled and untreated stormwater runoff outlined in the regulations to be adopted by the Commission under this bylaw. By meeting these predetermined standards, after review of an application, plans, calculations, and other supporting documents, the proposed project will be presumed to meet the requirements and intent of this bylaw.
- VERNAL POOL
- A confined basin or depression not occurring in existing lawns, gardens, landscaped areas or driveways which, at least in most years, holds water for a minimum of two continuous months during the spring and/or summer, contains at least 200 cubic feet of water at some time during most years, is free of adult fish populations, and provides essential breeding and rearing habitat functions for amphibian, reptile or other vernal pool community species, regardless of whether the site has been certified by the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife.
This bylaw shall be applicable to all new development and redevelopment, including, but not limited to, site plan applications, subdivision applications, grading applications, land use conversion applications, any activity that will result in an increased amount of stormwater runoff or pollutants flowing from a parcel of land, or any activity that will alter the drainage characteristics of a parcel of land, unless exempt pursuant to § 247-7 of this bylaw. After approval of this bylaw by the Attorney General, the Commission shall not approve any application for development or redevelopment if the land or parcels of land were held in common ownership (including ownership by related or jointly controlled persons or entities) and were subdivided or otherwise modified to avoid compliance. A development shall not be segmented or phased in a manner to avoid compliance with this bylaw. A stormwater management permit shall be required from the Commission for the following:
Any activity subject to site plan review (Ashland Town Code § 282-6);
Any activity that will result in the alteration and/or soil disturbance of 10,000 square feet or more, or increase the amount of impervious surfaces to more than 50% of the parcel or lot;
Any redevelopment of a commercial, industrial, institutional, or multifamily residential parcel as defined by Ashland Town Code § 282-99;
Any activity that will disturb land with a slope of 15% or greater and where the land disturbance is greater than or equal to 5,000 square feet within the sloped area; and
Any activity that will alter, fill or degrade a wetland, body of water, floodplain or isolated depression subject to flooding.
The following activities are exempt from the requirements of this bylaw:
Normal maintenance of Town-owned public land, ways and appurtenances, such as, but not limited to, the maintenance of drainage structures or utilities within or associated with public ways;
Normal maintenance and improvement of land in agricultural use as defined by the Wetlands Protection Act regulation 310 CMR 10.04 and MGL c. 40A, § 3;
Repair or replacement of septic systems when approved by the Board of Health for the protection of public health;
Normal maintenance of existing landscaping, gardens or lawn areas associated with a residential dwelling, provided such maintenance does not include the addition of more than 100 cubic yards of soil material, or alteration of drainage patterns;
The construction of fencing that will not alter existing terrain or drainage patterns;
The removal of earth products undertaken in connection with an agricultural use if the removal is necessary for or directly related to planting, cultivating or harvesting or the raising or care of animals; or
The Conservation Commission shall be the permit granting authority for the issuance of a stormwater management permit and shall administer, implement and enforce this bylaw. Any powers granted to or duties imposed upon the Commission may be delegated in writing by the Commission to its employees or agents or other municipal employees as appropriate. Such permit applications shall be submitted, considered, and issued only in accordance with the provisions of this bylaw and the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw.
Stormwater regulations. After public notice and a public hearing, the Commission shall adopt, and periodically amend, rules and regulations relating to the terms, conditions, definitions, enforcement, fees, procedures and administration of this Stormwater Management Bylaw. These rules and regulations shall be promulgated by a committee established by the Commission. This committee shall be composed of at least three but not more than 11 members. At least one member shall be from each of the Conservation Commission, Planning Board and Ashland Department of Public Works, or their designees. Other committee members may be drawn from other Town committees and boards or from interested Town citizens. The rules and regulations shall include procedures to conduct hearings, issue, deny, revoke and/or modify permits and to appeal, and shall also provide guidance generally to persons seeking to conduct a regulated activity. Such rules and regulations may also provide, as the Commission deems necessary, additional definitions and procedures not inconsistent with the bylaw and a schedule of fees to be charged. Failure by the Commission to promulgate such rules and regulations or a legal declaration of their invalidity by a court shall not act to suspend or invalidate the effect of this bylaw.
Right of entry. Filing an application for a stormwater management permit grants the Commission or its agent permission to enter the site to verify the information in the application and to inspect for compliance with permit conditions.
Stormwater Management Manual. The Commission will utilize the policy, criteria and information, including specifications and standards, of the latest edition of the Massachusetts Stormwater Management Policy, for execution of the provisions of this bylaw. This policy includes a list of acceptable best management practices and stormwater treatment practices, including the specific design criteria for each stormwater practice. The policy may be updated and expanded periodically, based on improvements in engineering, science, monitoring, and local maintenance experience. Stormwater management practices that are designed, constructed, and maintained in accordance with these design and sizing criteria will be presumed to be protective of Massachusetts's water quality standards unless engineering and performance information provided or obtained from credible and independent sources (as deemed by the Commission) refutes, modifies or supplements information from the Massachusetts Stormwater Management Policy.
Application. To obtain approval for a project subject to the provisions of this bylaw, the applicant shall submit a stormwater management plan and an operation and maintenance plan prepared, stamped and signed by a civil engineer registered in Massachusetts, a registered land surveyor, a Massachusetts licensed soil evaluator, a certified professional in erosion and sediment control, a certified professional in stormwater quality, or other person who can satisfactorily demonstrate to the issuing authority proficiency in the field of stormwater management as appropriate to the scope of the project, that complies with the requirements set forth herein and in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw. The operation and maintenance plan (O&M plan) shall be designed to ensure compliance with the permit and this bylaw, and that the Massachusetts Surface Water Quality Standards, 314 CMR 4.00 are met in all seasons and throughout the life of the system. The O&M plan shall remain on file with the Commission, the Planning Board, the Department of Public Works and the Town Engineer or the Town's engineering consultant, and shall be an ongoing requirement. The O&M plan shall meet the criteria set forth in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw. The plans shall fully describe the project in drawings, narrative, and calculations.
The Commission shall establish fees to cover expenses incurred by the Town in reviewing the application and monitoring permit compliance. The Commission is authorized to retain and charge the applicant fees to cover the cost of hiring a civil engineer or other professional consultant to advise the Commission on any or all aspects of the project. The applicant for a stormwater management permit may be required to establish and maintain an escrow account to cover the costs of said consultants. Applicants shall pay review fees to the Commission before the review process may begin.
The Commission may require a cash performance guarantee to ensure compliance with these requirements and for the long-term operation and maintenance of all permanent erosion control and stormwater management measures, as determined in the rules and regulations. The form of the bond shall be approved by the Commission upon the recommendation of Town Counsel and the Town Treasurer, as appropriate. With the approval of the Commission upon the recommendation of Town Counsel and the Town Treasurer, as appropriate, the applicant may substitute an irrevocable letter of credit or performance bond in lieu of the cash performance guarantee. Any performance bond or letter of credit shall be executed and maintained by a financial institution, surety, or guarantee company qualified to do business in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
The Commission may waive strict compliance with some of the requirements of this bylaw or the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder, if it determines that some of the application requirements are unwarranted because of the size or character of the development project or because of the natural conditions at the site and where such action:
Any request from an applicant for a waiver of these rules shall be submitted, in writing, to the Commission at the time of submission of the application. Such requests shall clearly identify the provision/s of the rule from which relief is sought and be accompanied by a statement setting forth the reasons why, in the applicant's opinion, the granting of such a waiver would be in the overriding public interest or the specific information required to show strict compliance is irrelevant to the project, and why a waiver would be consistent with the intent and purpose of this bylaw and the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder.
The Commission shall not approve any application for a stormwater management permit unless it finds BMPs and other criteria will be employed to meet the requirements outlined in the rules and regulations.
Compliance with all applicable federal, state and local regulations and guidelines, including but not limited to the Stormwater Management Handbook as it may be amended, has been demonstrated.
Based upon the nature of the application, the Commission may impose reasonable requirements or limitations to minimize the impacts, if any, on abutting properties or uses.
On redevelopment applications, the Commission may not require strict adherence to the performance standards or requirements based on the conditions, degree or size of the project.
Prior to commencement of any land-disturbing activity, the applicant shall record the permit with the Registry of Deeds or Registry District of the Land Court, and shall submit to the Commission written proof of such recording.
At completion of the project, the owner shall request in writing a notice of completion and submit as-built record drawings of all stormwater controls, treatment, best management practices and associated grading required for the site. The as-built drawing shall show deviations from the approved plans, if any, and shall be certified by a qualified professional registered in Massachusetts of equal or greater qualifications to the qualified professional submitting the original certified plans approved by the Commission.
The Commission shall act on each complete application for a permit within 90 days of the date of filing with the Commission and the Town Clerk, unless such application has been withdrawn from consideration or deemed incomplete. An application is deemed complete if all relevant sections of the application are properly filled out; all relevant plans and information are provided; application fees are paid; and there are no outstanding tax or fee liabilties to the Town of Ashland for the parcel(s) related to the permit application.
The Commission may take any of the following actions as a result of an application for a stormwater management permit as more specifically defined as part of stormwater regulations promulgated as a result of this bylaw: approval, approval with conditions, or disapproval.
A stormwater management permit may be disapproved if the Commission determines:
The requirements of this bylaw are not met; or
Insufficient information was provided to the Commission; or
Inadequate response by the applicant to the Commission's request for information; or
The intent of the application is to circumvent other provisions of the Town's Zoning Code and regulations.
Appeals of action by the Commission. A decision of the Commission shall be final. The appeal of a decision by the Commission under this bylaw shall be filed with the Massachusetts Land Court or Massachusetts Superior Court.
The Commission or its authorized agent and the Town of Ashland shall have the power and duty to enforce this bylaw, its regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
Penalties. Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, or permit issued hereunder, shall be subject to fines, civil action, criminal prosecution, and liens, as appropriate and as lawfully established by the Town of Ashland.
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter, or regulations, permits or administrative orders issued thereunder shall be punished by a fine of not more than $300. Each day or portion thereof during which a violation continues, or unauthorized fill or alteration remains in place, shall constitute a separate offense, and each provision of the bylaw, regulations and permits or administrative orders violated shall constitute a separate offense.
Liens. The Town of Ashland shall require reimbursement to the town for the cost of work undertaken by the town that the responsible party was obligated to perform but failed to perform as set forth in the Operation and Maintenance Plan. If reimbursement is not made within (30) days of written notice from the town to the responsible party, the Town may impose an assessment and municipal lien on the property of the responsible party or parties and interest shall begin to accrue on any unpaid costs at the statutory rate provided in G.L. Ch. 59, Section 57.
Noncriminal disposition. As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the Town may utilize the noncriminal disposition procedure set forth in MGL c. 40, § 21D, in which case the Conservation Agent or other authorized agent of the Town shall be the enforcing person. If noncriminal disposition is used, any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, order or permit issued there under, shall be punished by a fine of $300 per violation. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
Any determination that a particular provision or set of provisions in this bylaw are invalid or unenforceable shall not render ineffective, unenforceable, or inapplicable the remainder of this bylaw.
[Adopted 5-1-2019 ATM, Art. 14]
Increased and contaminated stormwater runoff is a major cause of impairment of water quality and flow in lakes, ponds, streams, rivers, wetlands and groundwater; contamination of drinking water supplies; alteration or destruction of aquatic and wildlife habitat; and flooding.
Regulation of illicit connections and discharges to the municipal storm drain system is necessary for the protection of the waters of the Commonwealth including the Town's water bodies and groundwater, and to safeguard the public health, safety, welfare and the environment.
This bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rule statutes, and pursuant to the federal Clean Water Act (40 CFR 122.34).
This bylaw shall apply to all water, and pollutants entering the municipal storm drain system directly, or indirectly, unless explicitly exempted by an authorized enforcement agency.
Nothing in this bylaw is intended to replace the requirements of either the Town of Ashland Wetlands Bylaw, or any other bylaw that has been or may be adopted by the Town of Ashland. Any activity subject to the provisions of the above-cited bylaws must comply with the specifications of each applicable bylaw.
The objectives of this bylaw are to establish legal authority to:
Prevent pollutants from entering the Town's municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) and the waters of the Commonwealth;
Prohibit illicit connections and unauthorized discharges to the MS4;
Investigate suspected illicit connections and discharges;
Eliminate illicit discharges, and require the removal of all such illicit connections and discharges;
Comply with state and federal statutes and regulations relating to stormwater discharges; and
Ensure compliance with the provisions of this bylaw through inspection, monitoring, and enforcement.
For the purposes of this bylaw, the following shall mean:
- AUTHORIZED ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITY or ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITY
- The director of the Department of Public Works (DPW) and her/his employees or agents designated to enforce this bylaw.
- A. An activity, procedure, restraint, or structural improvement that helps to reduce the quantity or improve the quality of stormwater runoff.
- B. Structural, nonstructural, vegetative and managerial techniques that are recognized by the Massachusetts Stormwater Handbook Volume Two, Chapter Two or other established industry standards to be the most effective means to reduce erosion, prevent or reduce increases in stormwater volumes and flows, prevent point source and nonpoint source pollution, promote groundwater recharge, utilize low impact development (LID) techniques, and promote stormwater quality and protection of the environment to the maximum extent practical.
- CLEAN WATER ACT
- The Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. § 1251 et seq., and 40 CFR 122.34) as hereafter amended.
- CONSTRUCTION ACTIVITY
- Activities subject to the stormwater management permit (pursuant to Chapter 343 of the Ashland Town Code), or the National Pollutant Discharge and Elimination System construction permits. Such activities include but are not limited to clearing and grubbing, grading, excavating, and demolition.
- 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 Commonwealth from any source.
- Groundwater means all water that exists beneath the land surface in soils or geologic formations, specifically that part of the subsurface water in the Saturated Zone.
- HAZARDOUS MATERIALS
- Any material, including any substance, waste, or combination thereof, which because of its quantity, concentration, or physical, chemical, or infectious characteristics may cause, or significantly contribute to, a substantial present or potential hazard to human health, safety, property, or the environment when improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of, or otherwise managed.
- ILLICIT CONNECTION
- A surface or subsurface drain or conveyance, which allows an illicit discharge into the municipal separate storm sewer 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 § 247-2-8. The term does not include a discharge in compliance with an NPDES stormwater discharge permit or a surface water discharge permit.
- IMPERVIOUS SURFACE
- Any surface that prevents or significantly impedes the infiltration of water into the underlying soil. This can include but is not limited to roads, driveways, parking areas and other areas created using nonporous material; buildings, rooftops, structures, artificial turf and compacted gravel or soil.
- INDUSTRIAL ACTIVITY
- Activities subject to NPDES industrial permits as defined in 40 CFR, Section 122.26(b)(14).
- 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 Ashland.
- NATIONAL POLLUTANT DISCHARGE ELIMINATION SYSTEM (NPDES) STORMWATER DISCHARGE PERMIT
- A permit issued by United States Environmental Protection Agency or jointly with the State of Massachusetts that authorizes stormwater discharge to waters of the United States by establishing limits on pollutant discharge, requiring monitoring and reporting of discharges, and other provisions through the authority of the Clean Water Act.
- NON-POINT SOURCE DISCHARGE
- Pollution resulting from many diffuse sources, in direct contrast to point source pollution which results from a single source. Non-point source pollution generally results from land runoff, precipitation, atmospheric deposition, drainage, seepage, or hydrological modification (rainfall and snowmelt) where tracing pollution back to a single source is difficult.
- NON-STORMWATER DISCHARGE
- Discharge to the MS4 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.
- POINT SOURCE DISCHARGE
- A point source is a single, identifiable source of pollution, such as a pipe or a drain.
- Any element or property of sewage, agricultural, industrial or commercial waste, runoff, leachate, heated effluent, or other matter whether originating at a point or non-point source, that is or may be introduced into any sewage treatment works or waters of the Commonwealth. Pollutants shall include but are not limited to:
- 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; sewage, fecal coliform and pathogens;
- G. Dissolved and particulate metals;
- H. Animal wastes;
- I. Rock, sand, salt, soils;
- J. Construction waste and residues;
- K. Noxious or offensive matter of any kind.
- Any building, lot, easement, or right of way, parcel of land, or portion of land whether improved or unimproved including adjacent sidewalks and parking strips.
- 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.
- The process by which groundwater is replenished with precipitation by percolation of runoff, and surface water through soil.
- SANITARY SEWER OVERFLOW
- A discharge of untreated wastewater from the sewer system. Herein referred to as "SSO".
- STORM DRAIN SYSTEM
- Publicly owned facilities by which stormwater is collected, and/or conveyed, including but not limited to any roads with drainage systems, streets, gutters, curbs, inlets, piped storm drains, pumping facilities, retention and detention basins, natural and human-made or altered drainage channels, reservoirs, and other drainage structures.
- Water from the natural hydrologic cycle due to precipitation, runoff, snowmelt runoff, and surface water runoff and drainage.
- STORMWATER POLLUTION PREVENTION PLAN
- A document which describes the best management practices and activities to be implemented by a person or business to identify sources of pollution or contamination at a site and the actions to eliminate or reduce pollutant discharges to stormwater, stormwater conveyance systems, and/or receiving waters to the maximum extent practicable.
- 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 c. 21C and MGL c. 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 a river, brook or underground stream.
- WATERS OF THE COMMONWEALTH
- All waters within the jurisdiction of the Commonwealth, including, without limitation, rivers, streams, lakes, ponds, springs, impoundments, estuaries, wetlands, coastal waters, and groundwater.
Editor's Note: See 33 U.S.C. § 1251 et seq.
Illicit discharges. No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged into the municipal storm drain system, watercourses, or waters of the Commonwealth any materials, including but not limited to pollutants or waters containing any pollutants that cause or contribute to a violation of applicable water quality standards.
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. A person is considered to be in violation of this bylaw if the person connects a line conveying pollutants or other illicit discharges not listed in § 247-2-8 of the bylaw to the MS4, or allows such a connection to continue.
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 Director or Acting Director of the Department of Public Works.
Private drainage systems. It is prohibited for anyone with a private drainage system from tying into the public stormwater disposal system without a permit from the Department of Public Works. The maintenance of any, and all private drainage systems shall be the responsibility of the owners.
Sanitary sewer overflows.
Sanitary sewer overflows shall be prohibited from entering into the storm drain system or entering into waters of Commonwealth.
Upon detection of an SSO entering the storm drain system, or waters of the Commonwealth, the DPW shall notify the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, the Board of Health, and the Conservation Commission. The system shall be eliminated as immediately as possible, and proper measures of mitigation to minimize the impacts of pollutants to and from the storm drain system and waters of the Commonwealth shall be undertaken.
Drains. No one shall tie any pump, cellar, yard, roof or area drain directly into the stormwater drainage system without a permit from the Department of Public Works. Any modification to existing drainage connections to the municipal stormwater system will require a permit from the Department of Public Works.
The following non-stormwater discharges or flows are exempt from the prohibition of non-stormwater provided that the source is not a significant contributor of a pollutant to the municipal storm drain system as determined by the DPW:
Discharge or flow resulting from firefighting activities;
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;
Discharge from landscape, irrigation water, or lawn watering or air conditioning condensation;
Water from individual residential car washing;
Discharge from de-chlorinated 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;
Discharge from street sweeping;
Residential building wash waters free of detergents and pollutants.
Enforcement Authority: 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 Board of Selectmen to the Enforcement Authority.
Illicit discharge regulations: The Enforcement Authority shall promulgate rules and regulations to effectuate the purposes of this bylaw, after public notice and public hearing is conducted. These regulations shall cover procedures, inspections, documenting, and enforcement. Failure by the Enforcement Authority to promulgate such rules and regulations shall not have the effect of suspending or invalidating this bylaw.
Right of entry: The Enforcement Authority shall have the right to enter properties and easements to disconnect any suspected, known, or reported, illicit discharges that are connected into Town-owned drainage systems or stormwater management structural best management practices, to the extent of performing its duties under this bylaw and regulations. The Enforcement Authority may make inspections as deemed necessary and under this bylaw.
Monitoring of discharges:
Applicability: This section applies to all facilities that have stormwater discharges associated with commercial or industrial activity, including construction activity.
Access to facilities: The Enforcement Authority shall be permitted to enter and inspect facilities subject to regulation under this bylaw as often as may be necessary to determine compliance with this bylaw provided proper notice is given to the property owner in non-emergency situations. If a discharger has security measures in force which require proper identification and clearance before entry into its premises, the discharger shall make the necessary arrangements to allow access to representatives of the authorized enforcement agency.
Facility operators shall allow the Enforcement Authority ready access to all parts of the premises for the purposes of inspection, sampling, examination and copying of records that must be kept under the conditions of an NPDES permit to discharge stormwater, and the performance of any additional duties as defined by state and federal law.
The Enforcement Authority shall have the right to set up on any permitted facility such devices as are necessary in its opinion to conduct monitoring and/or sampling of the facility's stormwater discharge.
The Enforcement Authority has the right to require the discharger to install monitoring equipment as necessary. The facility's sampling and monitoring equipment shall be maintained at all times in a safe and proper operating condition by the discharger at its own expense. All devices used to measure stormwater flow and quality shall be calibrated with secondary standards or better to ensure their accuracy.
Any temporary or permanent obstruction to safe and easy access to the facility to be inspected and/or sampled shall be promptly removed by the operator at the written or oral request of the Enforcement Authority and shall not be replaced. The costs of clearing such access shall be borne by the operator.
Unreasonable delays in allowing the Enforcement Authority access to a permitted facility is a violation of this bylaw. A person who is the operator of a facility with a NPDES permit to discharge stormwater associated with industrial activity commits an offense if the person denies the authorized enforcement agency reasonable access to the permitted facility for the purpose of conducting any activity authorized or required.
If the Enforcement Authority has been refused access to any part of the premises from which stormwater is discharged, and he/she is able to demonstrate probable cause to believe that there may be a violation, or that there is a need to inspect and/or sample as part of a routine inspection and sampling program designed to verify compliance with this bylaw or any order issued hereunder, or to protect the overall public health, safety, and welfare of the community, then the Enforcement Authority may seek issuance of a search warrant from any court of competent jurisdiction.
Emergencies or imminent risk: 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.
Suspension due to detection of illicit discharge: Any person discharging to the MS4 in violation of this bylaw may have their MS4 access terminated if such termination would abate or reduce an illicit discharge. The Enforcement Authority will notify a violator of the proposed termination of its MS4 access. The violator may petition the Enforcement Authority for a reconsideration and hearing. A person commits an offense if the person reinstates MS4 access to premises terminated pursuant to this section, without the prior approval of the Enforcement Authority.
Any person subject to an industrial or construction activity NPDES stormwater discharge permit shall comply with all provisions of such permit. All illicit discharges are prohibited under this bylaw and in accordance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. All discharges are prohibited to the Ashland MS4 unless there is compliance with the NPDES stormwater discharge permit. The Enforcement Authority may request proof of compliance with the NPDES program before allowing any discharges to the municipal stormwater system.
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 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, Board of Health, and the Enforcement Authority. 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 Conservation Commission shall be notified if these spills directly discharge to waters of the Commonwealth. 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.
The Enforcement Authority may take any of the actions outlined in "§ 247-2-15: Enforcement, violations and penalties". Upon final abatement of violations, the Enforcement Authority shall document all reported, or suspected violations, actions taken to abate violations, expenses accrued to the Enforcement Authority to abate violations, and fees to be paid or already paid.
The decisions or orders of the Enforcement Authority shall be final. Further relief shall be filed with the Massachusetts Land Court or the Massachusetts Superior Court.
The Enforcement Authority shall have the authority through its power and duty to enforce this bylaw, regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
Penalties: Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, or permit issued hereunder, shall be subject to fines, civil action, criminal prosecution, and liens, as appropriate and as lawfully established by the Town of Ashland.
Abatement of the violation: The Town of Ashland shall require reimbursement to the Town for the cost of work undertaken by the Town that resulted from a violation under the provisions of this bylaw. The Enforcement Authority shall invoice the property owner of expenses utilized by the Town to abate the violation. The invoice shall be made available within 90 days of actions undertaken by the Enforcement Authority to abate the violation, and payment shall be made 90 days from the date of the invoice.
Criminal penalty: Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, order or permit issued thereunder, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $300. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
Orders: The Enforcement Authority may issue a written order to enforce the provisions of this bylaw or the regulations thereunder, which may include:
Elimination of illicit connections or discharges to Town-owned drainage infrastructure;
Performance of monitoring, analyses, and reporting;
That unlawful discharges, practices, or operations shall cease and desist; and
Remediation of contamination in connection therewith.
If the Town determines that abatement or remediation of contamination is required, such abatement or remediation must be completed within 60 days. 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.
Civil relief: If a person violates the provisions of this bylaw, regulations, permit, notice, or order issued thereunder, the Enforcement Authority through the Board of Selectmen 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.
Non-criminal disposition: As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the Town may utilize the non-criminal disposition procedure set forth in M.G.L. c. 40, § 21D.
The Enforcement Authority shall enforce the non-criminal dispositions.
The penalty for any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, order, or permit issued there under, shall be punished by a fine of $300 per violation. Each day or part thereof that such violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
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.
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.