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Stormwater Program
Introduction to Stormwater in the City of Buda
Stormwater (also called surface water) originates from rainfall and other precipitation that runs off surfaces such as:
  • Rooftops
  • Streets 
  • Parking Lots
  • Lawns  
  • Compacted surfaces such as gravel and dirt

Surface water can also originate from sources such as:
  • Springs
  • Seeps  
  • Shallow ground water
  • Car washing  
  • Irrigation

Stormwater will eventually find its way into constructed drainage facilities, streams, rivers, lakes, wetlands, and groundwater.

Storm Water Pollution Prevention Tips

Storm Water Management
Management of all the resources listed above are critical, but when the terms stormwater management or Surface Water Management (SWM) are brought up, it usually refers to management of constructed facilities that handle stormwater before it reaches natural water bodies. These facilities may include catch basins, ditches, ponds, and many others.

Constructed facilities are designed to offer many different components important for stormwater management, like:
  • Conveyance of water away from impervious (water cannot penetrate) surfaces to avoid flooding
  • Detention of water to reduce erosion downstream and mimic more natural vegetated conditions and water quality to remove or restrict pollutants before they reach natural water bodies

Contact the Stormwater Department for the following issues

  • Report blocked or damaged storm drain inlets
  • Report dumping of ANY substance (motor oil, waste, etc.) into storm drain inlets
  • Report signs of foam or liquid with an oil sheen entering a storm drain

The City of Buda has a Storm Water Management Plan, a state-required document to protect water quality.

You can help the City manage stormwater better and improve the health of our creeks, lakes, and ponds. Some things you can do include:
  • Help keep storm drains free of leaves and other debris
  • Divert stormwater from your roof to a grassy area on your property instead of channeling it into the street (this might not be appropriate for people living at the top of bluffs or where the soil does not drain well)
  • Follow our tips on how you should wash your car
  • Clean up pet waste to keep it from washing into storm drains
  • Report Illicit Discharge to the City of Buda

Illicit Discharge -Overview
The purpose of this ordinance is to provide for the health, safety, and general welfare of the citizens of City of Buda through the regulation of non-storm water discharges to the storm drainage system to the maximum extent practicable as required by federal and state law. This ordinance establishes methods for controlling the introduction of pollutants into the municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) in order to comply with requirements of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit process.

To regulate the contribution of pollutants to the MS4 by storm water discharges by any user, to prohibit illicit connections and discharges to the MS4 and
to establish legal authority to carry out all inspection, surveillance, monitoring, and enforcement procedures necessary to ensure compliance with this ordinance.
Specific Prohibitions

No person shall dump, spill, leak, pump, pour, emit, empty, discharge, leach, dispose, or otherwise introduce or cause, allow, or permit to be introduced any of the following substances into the MS4 or conveyances:

  • Any motor oil, antifreeze, or any other motor vehicle fluid.
  • Any industrial waste.
  • Any hazardous material, including household hazardous waste, hazardous substances, and hazardous waste.
  • Any wastewater or septic tank waste, grease trap waste, or grit trap waste
  • Any  garbage, trash,  or  yard  waste, specifically  including  but  not  limited  to pressure treated wood, painted wood, painted wood pallets, laminated wood, insulation, and particle board.
  • Any discharge from a carwash facility; from any vehicle washing, cleaning, or maintenance at any new or used automobile or other vehicle dealership, rental agency, body shop, repair shop, or maintenance facility; or from any washing, cleaning, or maintenance of any vehicle, including a truck, bus, or heavy equipment, by a business or public entity that operates more than four such vehicles.
  • Any discharge from a mobile power washer or from the washing or other cleaning of a building exterior that contains any soap, detergent, degreaser, solvent, or any other harmful cleaning substance.
  • Any discharge from commercial floor, rug, or carpet cleaning.
  • Any discharge from the wash down or other cleaning of pavement that contains any harmful quantity of soap, detergent, solvent, degreaser, emulsifier, dispersant, or any other harmful cleaning substance; or any discharge from the wash down or other cleaning of any pavement where any spill, leak, or other release of oil, motor fuel, or other petroleum or hazardous substance has occurred, unless all harmful quantities of such released material have been previously
  • Any effluent from a cooling tower, condenser, compressor, emissions scrubber, emissions filter, or the blow down from a boiler.
  • Any  ready-mixed  concrete,  mortar,  ceramic,  or   asphalt  base   material  or hydromulch material, or material from the cleaning of vehicles or equipment containing, or used in transporting or applying, such materials.
  • Any runoff or wash down water from concentrated animal feeding operations as defined in 40 CFR 122.23 or discharges from concentrated aquatic animal production facilities as defined in 40 CFR 122.24.
  • Any   swimming  pool,  fountain,  or  spa  water,  including  backwash  water, containing total residual chlorine (TRC) of one ppm (part per million) or more or containing any harmful quantity of chlorine, muriatic acid or other chemical used in the treatment or disinfection of the swimming pool water or in pool cleaning.
  • Any discharge from water line disinfection by super chlorination or other means if the total residual chlorine (TRC) is at one ppm (part per million) or more or if it contains any harmful quantity of chlorine or any other chemical used in line disinfection.
  • Any fire protection water containing oil or hazardous materials that are required to be contained and treated prior to discharge, unless treatment adequate to remove pollutants occurs prior to discharge. This prohibition does not apply to discharges or flow from fire fighting/fire suppression activities.
  • Any contaminated runoff from a vehicle salvage yard or storage yard.
  • Any substance or material that will damage the MS4.
  • Any release from a petroleum storage tank (PST), or any leachate or runoff from soil contaminated by a leaking PST, or any discharge from the remediation of any such PST release, unless the discharge satisfies all of the following criteria:
  • Compliance with all state and federal standards and requirements; and
  • No discharge containing a harmful quantity of any pollutant.
  • Any harmful quantity of sediment, silt, earth, soil, or other material which is associated with clearing, grading, excavation or other such construction activities, or which is associated with land filling or other placement or disposal of soil, rock, or other earth materials.
  • Any  pavement  wash water from a service station  unless such  wash water has passed through a properly functioning and maintained grease, oil, and sand separator before discharge into the MS4 or conveyance
  • Any  introduction  of  oil  into  the  environment,  specifically  including   but  not limited to oil applied to a road or land for dust suppression,  weed abatement,  or other similar use; any introduction of oil commingled  or mixed with solid waste that is to be disposed of in a landfill; any introduction of oil by direct disposal on land or in a landfill; or any introduction of oil into the MS4 or conveyances,  or into any septic tank.

Development - Surface and Stormwater
The City of Buda’s surface water features (the lakes, streams, and ponds) are a significant part of our natural beauty and rich heritage. Spawning bass, meandering streams, and clean water are important natural resources which must be managed wisely to protect their value. With this in mind, City of Buda has adopted the City of Austin Drainage Criteria Manual.

This Storm Water Design Manual contains the requirements and standards for designing surface and storm water management systems in the City of Buda. As part of the permit approval process for certain types of permits for proposed projects, the City of Buda requires the construction of surface water and storm water management systems to mitigate the impacts on natural and existing man-made drainage systems.

Car Washing
When you wash your car on a compacted surface, the runoff containing soap, heavy metals, road grime, greases, and oils can enter the storm drains.

Unlike sanitary drains, storm drains usually run directly into creeks, ponds, and lakes. Untreated runoff destroys aquatic habitat, harms fish, and degrades water quality. Even biodegradable soaps may be harmful to fish!

What Can You Do?
If you are washing your car at home, find a grassy area that will soak up the runoff before it can reach a drain or ditch. Conserve water! Use a spray gun with flow restriction to minimize water volume and runoff. Empty your wash buckets into sinks or toilets. 

Use a Commercial Car Wash Facility
Instead of washing your car at home; use a commercial car wash facility. Commercial car wash facilities are required to send their runoff into the sanitary sewer where it is treated at a treatment plant. Commercial systems are also designed to use less water per car than the average car wash at home. They also reuse their water several times before sending it to a treatment plant.