Town of Bel Air, MD
Harford County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Town Commissioners of the Town of Bel Air 11-4-2013 by Ord. No. 763-13.[1] Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building construction — See Ch. 145.
Health and sanitation — See Ch. 240.
Minimum Livability Code — See Ch. 301.
Plumbing and gas fitting standards — See Ch. 353.
Stormwater management — See Ch. 405.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 397, Sewers, adopted 3-11-1980 by Ord. No. 310 as Ch. 8, Arts. 6 and 7, of the 1980 Code, as amended.
A. 
The Board of Commissioners does hereby adopt the National Standard Plumbing Code in accordance with Chapter 353 of this Code as a part of the rules and regulations relating to the sanitary sewerage system of the Town.
B. 
The Board of Commissioners does hereby adopt the Harford County Water and Sewer Design Guidelines, Harford County Water and Sewer General Rules and Regulations, Part 4, and Harford County Standard Specifications and Details for Water Mains and Sewer Mains as each is updated from time to time.
For the purpose of this article, the following definitions shall be used:
COMMISSIONERS
The Board of Commissioners.
COUNTY
Harford County, Maryland.
INDUSTRIAL USER
Any improved property used, in whole or in part, for manufacturing, processing, cleaning, laundering or assembling any product, commodity, or article or from which any process waste, as distinct from domestic waste, shall be discharged to the wastewater treatment system.
INDUSTRIAL WASTE
Any liquid or gaseous substance, whether or not solids are contained therein, discharged from any industrial establishment during the course of any industrial, manufacturing, trade, or business process or in the course of the development, recovery, or processing of natural resources, as distinct from sanitary sewage.
INDUSTRIAL WASTE DISCHARGE PERMIT
A permit to deposit or discharge liquid industrial wastes into any sanitary sewer owned by the county/Town.
NPDES
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System.
PRETREATMENT
The treatment of industrial sewage from privately owned industrial sources by the generator of that source prior to introduction of the waste effluent into a publicly owned treatment works.
TOWN
The Town of Bel Air, Maryland.
PUBLICLY OWNED TREATMENT WORKS (POTW)
The structures, equipment and processes required to collect, transport and treat domestic and industrial wastes and to dispose of the effluent and accumulated residual solids.
Sewage, consisting of wastewater originating within buildings of all types, shall be received into the sewerage system. Roof water and other stormwater or surface water shall not be discharged into sewers provided for carrying the fouled water from buildings. The Commissioners reserve the right to require such preliminary treatment of industrial wastes as they may deem proper before such wastes shall be discharged into the Town's sewers.
Any available information in regard to size, location, or depth of public sewers and drains shall be furnished to licensed master plumbers upon application in person or writing. All reasonable care shall be taken to ensure the correctness of such information, but the Town shall make no guarantee of the correctness of information so given.
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person, not specifically authorized by the Town, to open or close any manhole, obstruct or cover, uncover, disturb, or tap any pipe or appurtenance or interfere in any way with any property belonging to the Town. Any expense to which the Commissioners shall be put as a result of such interference shall be paid by the person responsible.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to damage a valve, manhole, pipe or appurtenance or any other property belonging to the Town. Any person damaging such property shall be responsible for the damage and shall pay to the Commissioners the cost of repairing the same, including overhead expense.
C. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to throw or deposit in any manhole, sewer cleanout or appurtenance, in any sewage pumping station or in any reservoir or tank any sticks, stones, dirt, straw, rubbish, sweepings, manure, dead animals, offal, garbage, rags, clothing, leaves, ashes, cinders, or refuse of any kind.
D. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to make or maintain any connection with any sewer or drain, or appurtenance thereof, through which there may be conveyed into the same any hot, suffocating, corrosive, inflammable, or explosive liquid, gas, vapor, or substance of any kind, or to cause to enter or flow into any sewer or drain or appurtenance thereof any hot, suffocating, corrosive, inflammable, or explosive liquid, gas, vapor, or substance of any kind.
E. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to make or maintain any connection with the sewer, or drain or appurtenance thereof, through which there may be conveyed discharge from a sump pump or rain leader or roof drain.
Duly authorized agents or employees of the Town, when attending to their duties, shall have access to private properties at all reasonable hours.
The Commissioners shall permit owners of properties fronting on streets immediately along and adjacent to the corporate limits of the Town to connect to the sewage system provided that:
A. 
Any such owner consents to a proposed annexation of the property to be connected.
B. 
Pending such proposed annexation, such an owner agrees to pay to the Town such reasonable charge for permission to use the sewerage system as may be set by the Commissioners, including any duly approved charges levied by Harford County.
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any property owner within the Town to permit the contents of any bathroom, sink, or any other fouled water to flow in or upon any of the alleys or streets of the Town.
B. 
It shall be the duty of every property owner who is aware that any fouled water is flowing from his property into alleys or streets of the Town to immediately stop and prevent such flow and clean up same.
Whenever the Commissioners shall have extended the sewer main within the street frontage abutting any property line, the property owner, upon notice from the Town and within the time prescribed in such notice and in accordance with a Town of Bel Air permit issued pursuant to Chapter 353 of the Code, shall make adequate connection therewith.
A. 
Sewer connections for each separate, developed lot fronting upon a street, alley, or right-of-way in which there is a sewer belonging to the Town will be extended to the property line by the property owner/developer, as required.
B. 
The size, location, depth and type of construction of all such sewer connections shall be as specified by the Harford County Standard Specifications and Details for Water Mains and Sewer Mains.
Sewer connections which have been installed but never connected or used for a period of one year or more or have been previously disconnected may be returned to use only when they are found by the Director of Public Works to be adequate and proper for the services to be performed.
A. 
No more than one building shall be served by each sewer or drain connection on private property. A building, for this purpose, shall be any structure or part thereof intended for a single occupancy on the street floor. Garages and accessory structures, if under the same ownership as the main building on the lot, may be served by the connection for the main building. For buildings of two or more stories, the Town may allow a single connection, by special permit for special reasons shown.
B. 
A group of public, ecclesiastical, educational, charitable, club or industrial buildings under one ownership and on a single tract of ground may be served by one connection if the Director of Public Works shall so approve.
A. 
The Department of Public Works shall maintain all sewer connections constructed by the Town outside the property line. The Town will maintain that portion of a service lateral extending from a cleanout set at the edge of the property line to the main. All pipes and appurtenances on private property shall be maintained by and at the expense of the property owner. The Department of Public Works, in case of emergency, or where they shall deem such action necessary, may do maintenance or repair work on private property, in which case the labor, material and equipment cost, including fifteen-percent overhead expense, shall be paid by the property owner. Likewise, the cost of any inspection or work outside of the property line made necessary by trouble on private property or by the neglect or through the action of a property owner or tenant shall be paid by the property owner.
B. 
The Department of Public Works will not attend to complaints concerning sewage leaks, stoppages, backups or overflow occurring on private property.
By agreement with the County, the Town paid an "Annual Area Connection Charge Equivalent Payment" as its proportional share of the cost of basic main and other sewage treatment facilities used to treat Town-generated sewage as such facilities existed on or before May 29, 1979. The Town made further an "Annual Area Connection Charge Equivalent Payment" for additional basic main facilities and upgrades/expansion of the existing facilities completed between May 29, 1979, and June 20, 1988. Any new basic main facilities or other treatment facilities constructed by the county after June 20, 1988, and used to transport and/or treat Town-generated sewage shall be financed by funds generated by collection of additional sewer connection charges as approved by the Commissioners.
A. 
The Commissioners and county have agreed that the Town will collect and remit to the county a sewer connection charge of $650 for each new sewer connection made after July 1, 1988. Such charge is based on the peak demand of each 30 fixture units requiring a 5/8 inch meter in accordance with the Harford County Division of Water and Sewer General Rules and Regulations, Part 4.
B. 
The Commissioners may collect an additional connection charge for new, basic main facilities for the Town sanitary sewerage system. Such funds, when and if collected, will be placed in the sanitary sewer capital improvement reserve to be utilized for capital upgrades to the system.
Sanitary sewer capital contribution charges, sewer connection charges and sewer service rates shall be reviewed by the Commissioners annually.
A. 
Except as provided in Subsection C of this section, the rate for sewer service for all properties connected to and discharging domestic sewage into the Town sanitary sewerage system and metered for water use shall be applied on each 1,000 gallons of water used or fraction thereof as measured by water meters either approved by the Director of Public Works or in use by the Maryland American Water Company, its successors and assigns, or by Harford County.
B. 
Except as provided in Subsection C of this section, the rate for sewer service for all properties connected to and discharging domestic sewage into the Town sanitary sewerage system for which the Director of Public Works has determined that no approved meter which measures water use accurately can be provided shall be a flat rate which shall be determined by the use to which the property is put, and such rate shall be directly related to the average water use of properties used for the same or similar uses which are metered, but in no case shall such charge be less than the minimum flat rate charges made by Harford County to its customers with the same or similar uses.
C. 
The rate for sewer service for those properties connected to and discharging domestic sewage into the Town sanitary sewerage system which are served under a legally binding agreement between the Town and the property owner shall be as set forth in the agreement so long as said agreement is in force. Upon the termination of such agreement, if the property being served is within the Town, and if such property is appropriately metered, Subsection A of this section shall apply; otherwise, Subsection B shall apply.
A. 
The rates for sewer service shall be applied as specified in § 397-17 and shall be computed annually, or more often if necessary, to cover both the projected cost of operating, maintaining, and making capital improvements to the Town sanitary sewerage system and the projected cost of transport and treatment of sewage by Harford County and its successors and assigns. The following charges/rates shall apply to all sewer customers in the Town of Bel Air unless otherwise specified:
[Amended 1-27-2014 by Ord. No. 765-14; 6-15-2015 by Ord. No. 771-15
Town of Bel Air Sewer Charges and Usage Rates
Water Meter Size
(inches)
Monthly Base Charge Amount
Quarterly Base Charge Amount
Usage Rate per 1.000 Gallons
5/8
$2.63
$7.89
$5.91
3/4
$14.82
$44.44
$5.91
1
$24.67
$74.04
$5.91
1 1/4
$35.65
$106.92
$5.91
1 1/2
$49.39
$148.09
$5.91
2
$78.97
$236.91
$5.91
3
$167.98
$503.86
$5.91
4
$246.75
$740.28
$5.91
6
$493.52
$1,480.56
$5.91
Flat rate (14,212 gallons plus 5/8-inch base charge):
$91.88
Flat rate affidavit (67.5% reduction):
$29.86
B. 
The flat rate shall be charged to all customers who are not served by a metered water connection. For flat-rate single-user customers who own and occupy the residence, the Town offers a lower flat-rate sewer charge; however, eligible customers must apply for the lower rate each July 1 by signing an affidavit.
C. 
All sewer charges and rates described herein shall be adjusted annually based on the Economic Indicator Consumer Price Index (CPI). Each fiscal year these charges and rates will be adjusted to reflect the annual change of the Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers for the expenditure category "all items not seasonally adjusted" and for all regions. The annual Consumer Price Index for the period ending each December, as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States Department of Labor, shall be used to adjust all charges and rates to be applied beginning July 1 of the following fiscal year.
D. 
The current charges will be published on the Town website at the beginning of each fiscal year beginning on July 1.
All properties connected to the sanitary sewerage system of the Town of Bel Air after passage of this article shall be equipped with approved water meters at time of connection.
A. 
Abatement of a sewer service charge may be made by the Director of Finance or the Town Administrator where it has been determined that a particular quantity of water allegedly flowing into the Town sanitary sewerage system has not been accurately measured. To be eligible for a rebate, a user must make application to the Director of Finance, making affidavit that a particular quantity of water flowing into the Town sanitary sewerage system did not and will not enter that sewerage system. The minimum quantity of water use which will be considered for rebate shall be 5,000 gallons.
B. 
Abatement of a sewer service charge may be approved where an abatement of water use charge has been made by the Maryland American Water Company, or its successors and assigns, or by Harford County.
Billing periods shall be quarterly or monthly as information is received for those metered users for which the Maryland American Water Company, or its successors or assigns, furnishes usage data. Billing periods shall be quarterly for those users not served by the Maryland American Water Company or its successors or assigns.
A. 
Sewer service charges to be assessed against each property served by the Town sewer system pursuant to the provisions of this article shall be a lien upon such property until paid and are to be collected in the same manner as municipal taxes are collected. Liens hereby established shall be subject only to liens for state and county taxes and for the Town real estate taxes. Such charges shall be due 30 days from the bill date and will incur interest at the rate of 1 1/2% per month until paid. Neither the due dates nor the interval between such dates need be uniform throughout the area served by the Town sanitary sewerage system.
B. 
Bay Restoration Fund charges are included with the sewer service charges and shall be collected in the same manner. Bay Restoration Fund charges were enacted by the State of Maryland in 2004 as a means to upgrade existing wastewater treatment plants to enhanced nutrient removal (ENR) levels of no more than 0.30 mg/l of phosphorus and 3.0 mg/l of nitrogen in their effluent discharged to the bay.
Any violation of any of the provisions of this article shall be a municipal infraction, and any violator shall be fined as provided in Chapter 1, Article II, of this Code for each day or fraction thereof during which a violation continues.
The purpose of this article is to establish uniform requirements for direct and indirect contributors into the Town sanitary sewerage system and the collection and treatment system owned and operated by the county and to comply with applicable federal and state laws and regulations, including the Federal General Pretreatment Regulations (40 CFR Part 403) and the State Water Pollution Regulations (COMAR 26.08); and to prevent the introduction of pollutants into the wastewater transport, treatment and disposal systems which singly or by interaction with other pollutants will:
A. 
Interfere with the maintenance and operation of a publicly owned treatment works (POTW).
B. 
Cause any county-owned, maintained or operated POTW to violate its NPDES discharge permit.
C. 
Contaminate the sludge at a POTW.
D. 
Pass through a POTW, inadequately treated, into any receiving waters or the atmosphere, or otherwise adversely affect the receiving stream of a POTW.
E. 
Pose a health threat to any workers on the collection system or POTW or constitute a hazard to humans or animals.
F. 
Be otherwise incompatible with a POTW.
A. 
Public wastewater collection facilities are used for the deposit of human wastes, garbage or other liquid wastes that cannot be discharged into a receiving stream or disposed of in any other manner in accordance with federal and state law. All domestic waste and authorized industrial waste may be discharged into the treatment works, except those which are deemed harmful to the system or are specifically prohibited by this article or are otherwise prohibited under the laws of the Town, county, the State of Maryland, or of the United States.
B. 
No person shall place, deposit or discharge, or cause to be placed, deposited or discharged, directly or indirectly, upon public or privately owned property, any wastewaters within the Town, unless done so in accordance with all applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations.
C. 
No person shall directly or indirectly deposit or discharge, or cause to be deposited or discharged, into any wastewater collection facilities any solid, liquid, or gaseous waste unless through a connection approved by law or regulation of the Town.
D. 
No person shall directly or indirectly discharge any sewage, waste or material, industrial waste or any polluted water into a stream or in the air or onto the land, unless that person has provided for treatment of such wastes in accordance with applicable Town, state, and federal laws and regulations.
E. 
In accordance with the 1985 Harford County/Town of Bel Air industrial wastewater pretreatment agreement, any industrial user is required to obtain an industrial waste discharge permit from the Harford County Department of Public Works. Industrial users within the Town of Bel Air shall comply with all applicable provisions of Chapter 256, Article VIII, Wastewater Collection and Treatment, of the Harford County Code.
No person shall, directly or indirectly, discharge or cause to be discharged any stormwater, foundation drainwater, roof runoff, surface drainage or unpolluted industrial cooling waters into any sewer connected through the Town's sewer collection system to the County's wastewater treatment plant. All connections which would result in the discharge of infiltration or inflow are hereby specifically prohibited.
Grease, oil, and sand interceptors or retainers shall be installed and maintained by the user at the user's expense when they are necessary for the proper handling of liquid wastes containing grease, oil or sand in excessive amounts or any other harmful ingredients. The interceptors shall be a type and capacity approved by the Plumbing Services Division of the Harford County Department of Inspections, Licenses and Permits and the Harford County Health Department. They shall be accessible for cleaning by the user and for inspection by the Department of Public Works.
A. 
Inspection rights. Any duly authorized employee or agent of the Town bearing proper credentials and identification shall be permitted at any time to enter upon all properties within the corporate limits of the Town which have contracted for wastewater treatment service for the purpose of inspecting, observing, measuring, sampling and testing as may be pursuant of the implementation and enforcement of the terms and provisions of this article.
B. 
Penalties. It shall be a misdemeanor for any person to violate any provision of this article, and any such person, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished as provided in Chapter 1, Article II, of this Code. Each day that a violation exists or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
C. 
Injunctive relief. The Town reserves the right to seek injunctive relief from discharge to the sewer system of substances which it deems harmful.