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This mailer has been provided as an avenue to disperse information pertinent to public agencies and the landscape architecture profession in hopes of fostering greater understanding and collaboration. Topics address issues that affect the built environment within which we live.


The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) General Permit for Storm Water Discharges Associated with Construction and Land Disturbance Activities

"The best thing one can do when it is raining is to let it rain.", Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

On September 2, 2009, the State Water Resources Control Board adopted a new order for storm water discharge which will become effective as of July 1, 2010. There are three major revisions to the order of which you may want to be aware:

  • All Projects must be registered on the new SMARTS (Storm Water Multi Application & Report Tracking System) System.
  • Projects will now have a consistent project team hierarchy consisting of a Legally responsible person (LRP), a qualified SWPPP developer (QSD) and a Qualified SWPPP Practitioner (QSP) among others.
  • All SWPPP(Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan) documents must be written, amended and certified by a qualified SWPPP developer (QSD). (This is now limited to a smaller group of professionals including licensed landscape architects and civil engineers.)

Project Registration-
Beginning July 1, 2010, all legally responsible persons (LRP) with new and existing projects which have not been completed will be required to register on the SMARTS system. The SMARTS system will be used for submittal of all permit registration documents including a notice of intent (NOI), risk assessment, site map, SWPPP documentation, signed certification statement, notice of termination (NOT) and post construction water balance performance.

Project Anatomy -
All general permits for storm water discharge will now be serviced by a team consisting of a Legally responsible person (LRP), an Approved Signatory (AS), a Qualified SWPPP Developer (QSD), a Qualified SWPPP Practitioner (QSP) and data submitters.

A LRP is the individual who certifies the NOI and is responsible for reviewing, validating and certifying the annual report. The LRP must have a user account and a secret code number (SCN) in order to link project WDID numbers, approved signatories and data submitters to the project account..

An AS may be another employee designated to certify documents on behalf of the LRP but may not be a contractor or consultant.

A QSD is a certified professional who will prepare SWPPP documents. (See the certification requirements below)

A QSP is an individual assigned to observe, sample, analyze and ensure full compliance with the permit/SWPPP implementation.

A data submitter is any individual authorized by the LRP to enter data into the SMARTS system.

Below is a simple flow chart depicting the anatomy or communication process for the new system:

flow chart

Project Member Certification -
The new approved order limits requires certification of any individual who prepares, amends or certifies SWPPP documents. The legally responsible person (LRP) must provide documentation of the training for any qualified SWPPP developers (QSD). All QSD's will need one of the following certifications or registrations:

  • A California registered professional civil engineer or landscape architect (O'Dell Engineering employs both!);
  • A California registered professional geologist;
  • A professional hydrologist registered by the AIH;
  • A professional in erosion and sedimentation control (CPESC) or storm water quality (CPSWQ) certified through Enviro Cert International, Inc.;
  • A professional in erosion and sediment control certified through the NICET.

There are also a few additional changes you may be interested in. Permits will now also require a risk assessment, which is submitted by the LRP. In addition to the risk assesment a rain event action plan will now be required with the SWPPP documents. If you are interested in learning more about the changes occurring, or need a qualified SWPPP developer for a project, please feel free to call us at the number listed below.

1. National pollutant discharge elimination system (NPDES general permit for storm water discharges associated with construction and land disturbance activities. Order No. 2009-0009-dwq, NPDES No. CAS000002.

O'Dell Engineering

The next time you need a Landscape Architect on your project, consider O'Dell Engineering's Landscape Architecture Department.

Services include:

  • Park and Playground Design
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Author: Chad Kennedy, Landscape Architect

This informational article provided by O'Dell Engineering - 1165 Scenic Drive, Suite A, Modesto CA 95350