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Ducks in Creek
San Ramon LogoStormwater Management Program title line

The purpose of the Stormwater Program is to efficiently utilize available assessment funding to reduce pollution of the storm water as it enters into our creeks and the bay, and to maintain public storm drain facilities. The program's activities are managed in accordance with National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit requirements enforced by the San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board and include performing field inspections (storm drain system, creeks, illicit connections), conducting educational and outreach activities (informational presentations, attending public events, coordination of storm drain stenciling), performing storm drain cleaning, regularly sweeping streets, and implementing new development/redevelopment stormwater controls.

Program History

Urban stormwater runoff has been identified as a major source of pollutants to the waters of the United States including San Francisco Bay.  As a result, the Federal Environmental Protection Agency established regulations governing stormwater pollution on November 16, 1990.  In California, the Regional Water Quality Control Board through its nine regional boards, enforce the federal regulations.  The San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) requires the Contra Costa Cities and County submit a joint application for a stormwater permit on an annual basis through a Municipal Regional Stormwater NPDES Permit (MRP).  New permit requirements are typically updated every five years.  The current permit was issued on July 21, 1999 and subsequently amended on July 21, 2004 to extend the expiration date until the new permit is adopted.

The City Council adopted Resolution No. 93-116 approving the formation of a stormwater utility area within San Ramon and establishing a Program Group Costs Payment Agreement with the Flood Control District.  This Agreement allows the District to collect the annual assessment from San Ramon properties by the County Assessor's Office and for the disbursement of funds.  Per this Agreement, the City must determine annually by May 1st the assessment per Equivalent Runoff Unit (ERU) for the forthcoming fiscal year and shall, by City Council resolution, request the Flood Control District to adopt Stormwater Utility Assessments based on the unit assessments.  The County Board of Supervisors conducts the countywide public hearing for the adoption of stormwater assessments in June.  The established stormwater assessment is then collected by the County on the County property tax rolls.

In 1993, the City Council of San Ramon adopted Resolution No. 93-15 authorizing the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors to direct the Flood Control District to form a Stormwater Utility Area (SUA) for San Ramon and establish a $23 per ERU annual assessment for FY 1993/94.  In addition, a maximum limit of $35 per ERU was set.

The City of San Ramon Stormwater Program is comprised of two components, the Countywide Program and the San Ramon Stormwater Management Plan. The Stormwater Program was originally focused on storm drain and creek cleaning, street sweeping, public education, and inspection of private development construction sites.  Starting in FY 1996/97, the program expanded into a business inspection program, as required by the RWQCB.  On February 19, 2003, the RWQCB amended the Contra Costa Countywide NPDES Permit.  The major revision to the permit is contained in Provision C.3. stating that all new development and significant redevelopment that creates or replaces 10,000 square feet or more of impervious surface must treat stormwater runoff on-site.  The provision became effective in 2005.  Exempt from this requirement are single-family homes and road reconstruction within existing right-of-way (i.e. pavement management). 

New development

In February 2003, the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Boards revised Provision “C.3” of the City's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit governing discharges from the city's storm drain systems. The new permit provision is being implemented in phases beginning in 2004 through 2006.

The new “C.3” requirements are separate from-and in addition to-existing requirements for erosion and sediment control and for pollution prevention measures during construction.

New development and significant redevelopment project site designs should minimize the area of new roofs, pavements, and other impervious surfaces. Where feasible, pervious surfaces should be implemented so that stormwater runoff can percolate to the underlying soil. Stormwater runoff from impervious areas must be captured and treated before draining into the City's stormwater system and eventually into the Bay. The new permit regulations specify ways to calculate the required size and designs of appropriate stormwater treatment devices.

Projects may also be required to detain or infiltrate runoff so that peak flows and durations match pre-project conditions.

In addition, project applicants must prepare plans and execute agreements to insure that the stormwater treatment devices are operated and maintained in perpetuity.


For more information on these new regulations, see the links below.

If you have any questions regarding the Clean Water Program or the new C.3 guidelines and requirements, please contact Steven Spedowfski at spedowfski@sanramon.ca.gov or (925) 973-2653.


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