NPDES Stormwater Compliance Program

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The City is required by the 1987 ‘Clean Water Act’ to apply for and obtain a “National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System’ (NPDES) Permit from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP). The NPDES Permit that was issued to the City by the FDEP is based on a ‘Stormwater Management Program’ (SWMP) that contains six program elements:
  1. Public Education and Outreach
  2. Public Involvement/Participation
  3. Illicit Discharge Detection/Elimination (IDDE)
  4. Construction Site Stormwater Runoff Control
  5. Post-Construction Stormwater Management for new Developments and Significant Redevelopments
  6. Municipal Operations Pollution Prevention/Good Housekeeping 

 

A brief summary of each of these six program elements is described below.

The City’s ‘Stormwater Management Program’ Manual (May 2003) which includes the City’s May 23, 2003 ‘Notice of Intent’ (NOI) filing with the FDEP are available for viewing by calling 629.8521.

Public Education and Outreach

Element Objective:
The City is required to distribute educational materials or conduct equivalent outreach activities about the adverse environmental impacts caused by polluted stormwater and the steps the public can take to reduce pollutants in stormwater runoff.

Current & Ongoing Activities: 
The City maintains a website to which this document is linked and to which additional links to stormwater-related activities are provided, specifically for the City’s:

  • Recycling Program
  • Street Maintenance Program
  • Stormwater Maintenance Program
  • Special Sanitation Services

The City makes numerous public-information brochures available to the public at several locations within the City namely City Hall, the Marion County Library, and the City Public Works Department.  These stormwater-related brochures are:

  • Household Hazardous Waste 
  • Suggestions for Waste Reduction in Ocala Florida
  • Home Lawn Irrigation
  • Be a Leak Seeker
  • Saving Water Outdoors
  • 25 Things You Can Do to Prevent Water Waste
  • 55 Facts, Figures and Follies of Water Conservation
  • Saving Water Indoors
  • 12 Simple Ways to Save Water
  • Home Irrigation Safety
  • Questions and Answers about Cross-Connection Control

The City publishes a newsletter titled ‘Open Lines’ that is distributed every other month to residents in their Ocala Electric Utility bill.  Once a year a NPDES-related article will be published in that newsletter.

Public Involvement/Participation

Element Objective:
The City is required to implement a public participation / involvement program that fosters public involvement in the process of reducing pollutants in stormwater runoff.


Completed Activities:
During the development of the ‘Stormwater Management Program’ (SWMP), the City conducted public hearings and otherwise solicited public input and comment before the SWMP was adopted and submitted for approval to the FDEP.

Current and Ongoing Activities:
City board meetings are held on a regular basis throughout the year and are open to the public.  The schedule and agenda of upcoming board meetings posted in the City Clerks Office and is contained on the City’s webpage www.ocalafl.org.   On an annual frequency, the City Council agenda contains a NPDES stormwater related item.

The City is a financial sponsor and active participant in the ‘Watershed Action Volunteers’ (WAV) Program conducted through the St. Johns River Water Management District.  Numerous NPDES stormwater-related activities are conducted by WAV on behalf of the City throughout the year including water-body water quality monitoring and protection programs, shoreline clean-ups, public education initiatives (presentations and programs at public schools, etc.), and water quality sampling efforts.

The City is a sponsor of numerous NPDES stormwater quality related activities within the City.  These activities are widely advertised to the residents of the City and active public participation is encouraged.  These activities are:

  • Household Hazardous Waste Amnesty Days (twice a year)
  • Tire Collection Days (once a year)
  • Arbor Day Activities
  • Adopt-A-Street Program (ongoing throughout the year)
  • The Mayor’s Annual Spring Clean-Up Event

 

Illicit Discharge Detection/Elimination

Element Objective:
The City is required to implement an ‘Illicit Discharge Detection / Elimination’ Program for the purpose of locating and eliminating illicit connections, illicit discharges and illegal dumping into the City’s stormwater system to the extent practical.


Completed Activities:
The City has developed a map of its storm sewer system that shows the location of all know storm sewer outfalls within the City along with the names and locations of all surface waters of the State that receive discharges from those City storm sewer outfalls.  The City has determined that there is only one (1) such outfall within the City and that outfall is located on the north side of E Silver Springs Boulevard somewhat to the west of NE 35th Avenue.  Flow from that outfall ultimately empties into the Silver River in Marion County.

The City has four existing ordinances (Chapter 34 – Environment, Chapter 70 – Utilities, Chapter 102 – Natural Resources and Chapter 114 – Subdivision Regulations) that effectively prohibit the discharge of ‘regulated substances’ into its storm sewer system. 

Current and Ongoing Activities: 
The language of the four existing City ordinances will be reviewed and updated (if and to the extent determined to be necessary) to be in compliance with the applicable ‘Illicit Discharge’ provisions of the City’s NPDES permit.

The City is developing and, following an opportunity for public comment, will implement an ‘Illicit Discharge Detection/Elimination’ Plan to detect and address non-stormwater discharges, including illegal dumping, into the City’s storm sewer system. 

As part of this plan a public information component will be developed whose purpose will be to train designated City-employees and to inform the business community and the general public of the adverse environmental impact of illicit discharges and illegal disposal of wastes in the City’s stormwater system.

The program will establish specific procedures for:

  • Locating priority areas likely to have illicit discharges
  • Tracing the source of illicit discharges
  • Removing the sources of illicit discharges
  • Evaluating and assessing the effectiveness of the program.

 

Construction Site Stormwater Runoff Control

Element Objective:
The City is required to develop and implement a program to reduce pollutants in stormwater runoff from all site development construction projects involving one or more acres of land. The program will incorporate the following:

  • An ordinance or other regulatory mechanism to require that appropriate erosion and sediment control measures be installed on all projects along with appropriate sanctions to ensure compliance.
  • A requirement that construction site operators utilize proper erosion and sediment control ‘Best Management Practices’ in the construction of their project.
  • A requirement that construction site operators control waste (e.g. discarded building materials, concrete truck washout, chemicals, litter, debris and sanitary waste) at the construction site that may potentially cause an adverse impact on the stormwater flowing through or near the construction site.
  • A requirement that all development projects go though a City-regulated site plan review process for the purpose of ensuring that concerns over potential water quality impacts of the project are incorporated into the scope of the project.
  • Procedures for the receipt and consideration of public comments.
  • Procedures for site inspection and enforcement of erosion and sediment control measures.

Completed Activities:
Under Chapters  ‘34 – Environment’; ‘70 – Utilities’; ‘102 – Natural Resources’; ‘114 – Subdivision Regulations’ and ‘118 - Trees, Landscaping, and Other Vegetation’, all of the City’s Code if Ordinances, the City has the authority to:

  • Regulate all construction site activities including the authority to require the use of erosion and sediment control measures during construction.
  • Conduct periodic site inspections for compliance with City Ordinances for erosion and sediment controls and other provisions of the Approved Site Plans.
  • Order construction operators to control waste/debris on their construction sites.
  • Issue ‘Stop-Work’ orders or impose other sanctions to ensure compliance.

Under ‘Chapter 114 – Subdivision Regulations’ of the City’s Code if Ordinances, the City has the authority to require that each proposed site development project go through a ‘Site Plan Review Process’ for the purposes described above and to receive formal City-approval before any construction activity can commence.

Current and Ongoing Activities: 
Site Plan Review procedures to ensure site plan compliance with erosion and sediment control measures are now being enforced as part of the City’s ongoing Site Plan Review and Approval process.

Site Inspections for the enforcement of construction debris control measures are now being conducted on an ongoing basis.

Site Inspections for the enforcement of erosion and sediment control measures are now being conducted on an ongoing basis.  All site inspections for erosion and sediment control compliance are documented and contain narrative for field observations, findings, conclusions and the follow-up actions required of the contractor.

Post- Construction Stormwater Management

Element Objective:
The City is required to develop and implement a program to address post-construction stormwater runoff from all new site development projects and site redevelopment projects involving one or more acres of land.

The purpose of the program is to require controls that prevent or minimize water quality impacts from new developments or redevelopments and maintain to the greatest extent possible the ‘Pre-Development Stormwater Runoff Conditions’.

The program element is to contain the following:

  • An ordinance or other regulatory mechanism giving authority to the City to impose restrictions or limitations on post-construction runoff from new development and redevelopment projects to the extent allowed by law.
  • A requirement that site development projects contain a combination of structural and or nonstructural ‘Best Management Practices’ (BMP’s) components to limit post-construction stormwater runoff from the project site. 
  • A few examples of Structural BMP’s are ‘Dry Extended-detention Ponds’, ‘Infiltration basins & trenches’, ‘Porous Pavement’, and ‘Grassed Swales & Filter Strips’. 
  • A few examples of Non-Structural BMP’s are ‘Alum Injection’, ‘Buffer Zones & Open Space Design’, and ‘Conservation Easements’. 

Completed Activities:
In undertaking the goals of the ‘Clean Water Act’ and specifically the ‘NPDES’ program, the City of Ocala, Marion County and our two Water Management Districts (St. John’s River Water Management District and Southwest Florida Water Management District) all share common interests.

In the City’s ‘Stormwater Management Program’ that was filed with the FDEP, the City proposed:

  1. to use a ‘qualifying alternative program’ under Part IX.C of the Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.) described below 
  2. and that, with the ‘qualifying alternative program’, the City not be required to develop and implement separate goals for this program element.

The ‘qualifying alternative programs’ recognized in the City’s ‘Stormwater Management Program’ are:

  1. For that portion of the City of Ocala within the jurisdiction of the St. John’s River Water Management District - the program implementing Rule 40C-42 F.A.C., Regulation of Stormwater Management Systems.
  2. For that portion of the City of Ocala within the jurisdiction of the Southwest Florida Water Management District - the program implementing Rule 40D-4, F.A.C. Management and Storage of Surface Waters.

The FDEP has approved the ‘qualifying alternate programs’ proposed by the City and, as a result, the City will not be developing and implementing separate goals for this program element.

Municipal Operations Pollution Prevention

Element Objective:
The City is required to develop and implement a pollution prevention and good housekeeping program for municipal operations with the goal of preventing or reducing pollutant runoff from municipal operations.

Using available training materials from Federal, State and other sources, the City is required to undertake a training program for City employees to prevent or reduce stormwater pollution from municipal activities such as:

  • parks and open-space maintenance
  • street, municipal facility, drainage and other construction projects
  • Stormwater system maintenance
  • Vehicle and equipment maintenance

Completed Activities:

Staff Training:

  1. Stormwater: The City has identified and provided training for Stormwater Department City-staff in the Stormwater Operator Program, specifically for Classes A, B and C.
  2.  Herbicide: The City has identified and provided training for Parks Department City-staff in the uses and proper applications of herbicide.

The City maintains an up-to-date list of all City employees with the above qualifications.

Current and Ongoing Activities:

The City’s Fleet Operations Department has developed and implemented a comprehensive Operations and Maintenance Program ‘Environmental Standard Department Operating Guidelines (2000)’ for all city-vehicle operations.

That program provides for the following:

  1. Waste Filters: All filters and absorbent materials that are no longer useful are properly stored, periodically tested and, upon satisfactory testing to determine that the materials are non-hazardous, are recycled in accordance with the City Fleet Management Guidelines.
  2. Spent Oil: All oil from Fleet oil/water separators is periodically removed and, upon satisfactory testing to determine that it is non-hazardous, are recycled in accordance with the City Fleet Management Guidelines.
  3. Batteries: All batteries that are no longer useful are properly stored, periodically tested and, upon satisfactory testing to determine that they are non-hazardous, are recycled in accordance with the City Fleet Management Guidelines.
  4. Oil Spills: Oil spills from city-vehicles at the Fleet Management facility are promptly addressed by implementing confinement and clean-up procedures described in the City Fleet Management Guidelines.
  5. Vehicle Washing: All washing of City-vehicles takes place at the City Complex.  All discharge from fleet washing operations is monitored by the City’s Water & Sewer Department.  All liquid from washing operations is collected in confinement chambers, periodically pumped out, and disposed of at the City’s Water Reclamation Facility #1.  All sludges from washing operations are sampled for the presence of hazardous materials and if testing is negative, the sludges are disposed of at the landfill as solid waste.

The Streets Division of the City’s Public Works Department has developed and implemented a comprehensive Maintenance Program for all city streets and storm drainage systems within the City that provides for the following:

  1. Street Sweeping: All streets within the City are mechanically swept on a regular, predetermined basis throughout the year.   In addition, certain streets are swept additional times based on need following events such as a significant rain.  Data from sweeping operations is recorded on a daily basis.  The number of streets swept and the volume of material collected by the sweeping operations is documented.
  2.  Storm Drainage System Cleaning: All significant components of the City’s storm drainage system is inspected and cleaned on a regular, predetermined basis throughout th year.  In addition, certain drainage structures are inspected and cleaned additional times throughout the year based on need following events such as a significant rain.  Data from storm drainage system cleaning operations is recorded on a daily basis.  The number of structures cleaned, the length of pipe cleaned, the number ‘Drainage Retention Areas’ (DRA’s) cleaned and the volume of material collected by the storm drain system cleaning operations is documented.

The material collected from street sweeping and storm drain system cleaning is occasionally tested to determine that it is non-hazardous, and then deposited at the landfill.

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