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Requirements for Construction

As required by Provision C.6 in the Municipal Regional Permit, Contra Costa municipalities implement a construction site control program to prevent construction site discharges of pollutants and impacts on receiving waters. Each jurisdiction:

  • Requires the submittal of an Erosion Control Plan that includes appropriate site specific Best Management Practices (BMPs).

  • Inspects construction projects.

  • Implements an Enforcement Response Plan to respond to and require timely corrections of non-compliant conditions.

In addition to complying with Provision C.6, construction projects that disturb an acre or more of soil are required to comply with the State Construction General Permit. Among other things the Construction General Permit requires the development of Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan and the implementation of an inspection and monitoring program. The California Stormwater Quality Best Management Practices Handbook: Construction provides guidance on complying with the State Construction General Stormwater Permit and includes a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) template.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Q. Do I need to develop an Erosion Control Plan?

A. If you will be seeking a grading permit from a Contra Costa municipality, yes, you will need to develop and submit an Erosion Control Plan for approval before your grading permit is issued. Your Erosion Control Plan must include site-specific, seasonally appropriate and effective BMPs and must conform to the local grading and stormwater ordinance. Check with the Permitting Authority for details.

2. Q. Do I need to get a State permit for my construction project?

A. If your construction project disturbance (e.g., clearing, grading, excavation) of one acre or more of land part or is part of a larger common plan of development that in total disturbs one or more acres, you must obtain coverage under the State General Construction Activity Stormwater Permit (Construction General Permit). To obtain coverage under the Construction General Permit, you must file Permit Registration Documents electronically in the State’s on line Stormwater Multiple Application and Report Tracking (SMART) System. You can obtain information about the Construction General Permit at the State Water Board’s web site: https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/stormwater/construction.html

3. Q. What if my construction project involves less than 1 acre of a land disturbance?

A. If your project is less than one acre, and you are seeking a grading permit, you will need to develop and Erosion Control Plan. See FAQ #1.

4. Q. Is guidance available for preparing a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP), which is required by the State’s General Construction Permit?

A. Yes. Guidance is available in the California Stormwater Quality Association’s Stormwater Best Management Practice Handbook for Construction: https://www.casqa.org/resources/bmp-handbooks. Note that SWPPPs for the Construction General Permit must be prepared by a Qualified SWPPP Developer (QSD). You can find QSDs using this look-up tool: https://www.owp.csus.edu/qsd-lookup.php.

5. Q. Who is responsible for complying with the Construction General Permit?

A. The owner of the land is responsible for compliance with the General Construction Permit. The owner must engage appropriately qualified individuals to develop the SWPPP, a Qualified SWPPP Developer (QSD), and to implement the SWPPP, a Qualified SWPPP Practitioner (QSP).

6. Q. How do I get more information about the Construction General Permit?

A. Visit the State Water Resources Control Board’s construction program web site: https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/stormwater/construction.html. You can also email or call for information:

  • Email: stormwater@waterboards.ca.gov

  • Toll Free: 1-(866)-563-3107