Stormwater Program

Frequently Asked Questions

Sacramento County has specified nine industry types that require a routine stormwater inspection to ensure continuing compliance with the local stormwater ordinance.  All businesses and citizens within Sacramento County are required to comply with local stormwater ordinance requirements, whether or not they receive a routine inspection.

A stormwater inspection is not about whether or not storm drains are on the site, rather, it is about the type of business activity conducted on the site.  Certain materials, wastes and business activities conducted outdoors have the potential to contribute to pollution of our creeks and rivers year round, not just when it rains.  See what the storm drain system is and how it carries pollutants to our local waterways.

The stormwater bill from EMD is an inspection fee. It is not a water bill, a sewer bill, nor a drainage fee. If you receive a stormwater inspection fee bill from EMD it is because in Sacramento County your business type is required to receive a stormwater compliance inspection. Stormwater bills from other agencies, such as from a water utility, are usually related to a drainage use fee.

Currently, residential car washing is allowed in Sacramento County as long as no hazardous materials are discharged outdoors.  Therefore, at home you can wash a car outdoors without recovering the wash water for proper disposal.  A business is required to control wash water and pollutants, review Vehicle washing alternatives.

Businesses cannot discharge wash water of any kind to the storm drain system, with or without soap, including soap that is considered biodegradable. Review vehicle washing alternatives.

If you believe that you have observed a stormwater violation occurring at a business or residence, a complaint can be filed if it is one of the nine industry types listed, contact 916-875-8550 and EMD will respond to the complaint.

For all other stormwater complaints, contact the local agency below: