Stormwater Ordinance Update


Stormwater within the geographic boundary of the City of Spokane is generally regulated by the Washington State Department of Ecology's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Eastern Washington Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit (Stormwater Permit). The Stormwater Permit authorizes the City of Spokane to discharge stormwater from the Municipal Separate Stormwater Sewer System (MS4) to surface waters and groundwaters of the State of Washington pursuant to certain conditions. One condition requires the City to adopt specific ordinances around the responsibilities for the management of stormwater.

Purpose of the Review

The stormwater permit establishes standards and requirements for the regulation of municipal stormwater to protect water quality. The purpose of the permit is to provide municipalities a framework to develop a stormwater management program that utilizes best practices and techniques to manage public stormwater; ensure that private stormwater is managed appropriately; and educate the public on stormwater stewardship, all in order to provide protection to waters of the State of Washington.

City of Spokane is proposing amendments to its stormwater ordinances which will:

  • Comply with the Eastern Washington Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit required terms and conditions,
  • Provide clarity for projects and properties that are required to manage stormwater, and
  • Provide water quality protection to local waters of the State.

The following changes to Title 17D of the Spokane Municipal Code are being proposed to meet conditions of the stormwater permit:

  • Update Section 17D.060.030.B Standard References to add the Stormwater Management Manual for Eastern Washington (SWMMEW), Washington State Department of Ecology as a standard reference.
  • Amend Section 17D.060.050 Duties of Property Owners and Occupants – Others – Private Rights Reserved to add a statement to identify that stormwater facilities shall be installed with adherence to the Best Management Practices referenced in the Spokane Regional Stormwater Manual (SRSM) and the Stormwater Management Manual for Eastern Washington (SWMMEW).
  • Revise Section 17D.060.140.E Runoff and Infiltration Controls to include an annual post-construction requirement for new and re-development project properties that disturb an acre or more, or are part of a larger development plan to provide to the City an annual 3rd party certification of onsite stormwater facilities indicating that adequate maintenance has been performed and that the facilities are operating as designed to protect water quality.
  • Amend Section 17D.060.190 Illicit Discharge(s) to include a sub-section that clearly identifies the responsibility of commercial/industrial facilities and private properties to utilize and maintain structural Best Management Practices (BMPs) as necessary to prevent illicit discharges.
  • Amend Section 17D.090.070.A Plan Required to include the requirement to provide to the City a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan for projects that disturb one acre or more.
  • Revise Section 17D.090.110 Minimum Plan Requirements to include the requirement for plans to be consistent with the Stormwater Management Manual for Eastern Washington in order to reduce the discharge of pollutants to the maximum extent practicable, and to satisfy all known, available and reasonable methods of prevention, control and treatment requirements.
  • Revise Section 17D.090.210.A.1 City Inspections – Permitted Activities to include the requirement that project sites which may have a high potential for sediment transport shall be inspected prior to clearing or grading.

Applicable Stormwater Documents

Legislative Process

(Dates are subject to change)

  • Planning Commission Workshop - September 8, 2021
  • Planning Commission Hearing - September 22, 2021
  • PIES Committee Meeting - September 27, 2021
  • City Council Hearing - October 25, 2021

Public Comment

Please contact Trey George, Environmental Analyst, with Wastewater Management if you have questions or would like to provide public comment. You can email comment to, or by comment by mail to Attn: Trey George, 909 E. Sprague Ave, Spokane, WA 99202.

Contact Information

Trey George