Source Control & Business Inspection Program
Prevent pollution at your business
Monroe’s business community is quite diverse. There are close over 1,800 businesses within the city and they vary in type and size – healthcare, manufacturing, government, retail, restaurant, professional services, and builders and contractors. Business owners and managers have a great deal of responsibility – even when it comes to protecting the environment.
As a business in Monroe, you are required to prevent pollution from stormwater that could reach a surface water (e.g. rivers, streams or lakes) or groundwater. Rain falling on your business or generated by your activities can collect several different contaminants, including dirt, oil, fertilizers, pesticides, pet waste, litter and assorted chemicals and metals. This polluted storm runoff flows into storm drains and ditches that lead to streams, lakes, and wetlands. Preventing pollution cuts costs, avoids expensive cleanups and protects a business from fines. The best way to prevent stormwater pollution is to start at the source of it.
Get help with a Pollution Prevention program
As a requirement of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination Permit (NPDES), the city launched an inspection program to help businesses identify sources of stormwater runoff and implement “best management practices” to prevent, eliminate, or reduce it.
The inspection program is overseen by the State Department of Ecology (DOE) which has identified over 30 types of businesses (too many to list here) that are required to participate in its Source Control and Business Inspection Program. Monroe businesses are identified by their North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code.
Monroe’s inspection program involves:
- Initial contact: Contact with affected businesses will be made by letter, explaining the program.
- Site inspection: Evaluate current practices that cause stormwater pollution (e.g. uncovered liquids and materials, washing equipment over storm drains, unswept areas) and those that prevent, reduce or eliminate it (e.g. proper chemical storage, spill kits).
- Action Plan: If activities are noted during the inspection that pose a threat or are causing stormwater pollution or other public health issue, the city will provide the business with a corrective action plan.
- Compliance: The city seeks voluntary compliance from affected businesses. Additional inspections, or even enforcement, may be necessary to ensure compliance is achieved. Once it has, city records will document compliance.
There are no fees associated with the inspection program; however, failure to comply with corrective actions may result in civil penalties set forth in Monroe Municipal Code 1.04.04.
Some ways to prevent, eliminate, or reduce stormwater pollution (and to prepare for the inspection) is to implement housekeeping practices such as:
- regularly sweeping and cleaning outside areas,
- immediately cleaning spills and properly disposing of waste,
- keeping liquids inside, under cover and/or lidded
- keeping dumpster areas tidy
- conducting all washing operations in an area that drains to the sanitary sewer system
- covering piles and materials that are stored outside
- Washington State Department of Ecology, Stormwater Program
- Types of businesses to participate in the Source Control & Business Inspection program
- Monroe Municipal Code 13.34, Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination