Southeastern Michigan Phase II
Stormwater Information Clearinghouse

Meeting the Federal Stormwater Regulations

Following is a list of requirements developed by USEPA that must be met to be in compliance with the Phase II Stormwater Permit, and a description of how the requirements differ between the two permit options.

EPA has also developed a series of fact sheets on these requirements.

General Phase II Presentation:

This presentation was developed to provide local government officials with a general overview of stormwater and the Phase II program. The presentation is downloadable as a Microsoft PowerPoint file and can be individualized as needed.

NPDES Phase II Storm Water Regulations: What Municipal Governments Need to Know
(Powerpoint document: 7.30 MB)

Application Requirements

Both the Watershed-Based Permit and Jurisdictional-Based Permit required submission of an application by March 10, 2003. Following are specific application requirements for both permit options:

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option: The application must contain the name and address of the permittee, along with the proposed watershed boundaries and a list of known outfalls and their receiving waters. Communities in the Clinton River watershed can download the Clinton River Subwatershed Map (PDF) to illustrate their jurisdictional and subwatershed boundaries. Download the Watershed-Based Permit Application (Word).
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option: The application must contain the name and address of the permittee, along with the contact person and a list of known outfalls and their receiving waters. Download the Jurisdictional Permit Application (Word).

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Public Education

Both permit options require the development of a public education plan (PEP).

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option: The PEP is due one year after the certificate of coverage is issued. Topics to be covered include:
    • encouraging public reporting of illicit discharges or improper disposal in storm drain system
    • education on the availability, location, and requirements of facilities for dipsoal or dropoff of household hazardous wastes, travel trailer sanitary wastes, chemicals, grass clippings, leaf litter, animal wastes, and moter vehicle fluids
    • education on application and disposal of pesticides and fertilizers
    • education on cleaning materials and procedures for residential car washing
    • education on the ultimate discharge point and potential impacts from pollutants from storm drain system from their residence
    • education on the public’s responsibility and stewardship in their watershed, and
    • education concerning riparian lands management to protect water quality.
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:The PEP is due one year after the certificate of coverage is issued. All the topics discussed above in the watershed based permit option must be addressed. In addition, permittees must:
    • educate the public on proper septic system maintenance
    • educate commercial, industrial, and institutional entities likely to have significant storm water impacts
    • educate the public on the impacts of residential de-icer and how to minimize impacts, and
    • educate the public on the role of native vegetation on residential properties as a ground cover alternative to turfgrass.
Sample Public Education Plans

Following are sample public education plans developed and approved in meeting the Watershed-Based Permit Option. Although this information may be helpful to communities utilizing the Jurisdictional Permit Option, communities should refer to the additional requirements for this permit option.

Phase II Public Education Database

With the assistance of organizations across Southeast Michigan, SEMCOG has created this searchable database of existing public education materials and programs.

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Public Involvement and Participation

Separate from educating the public is another requirement to involve the public. This requires the development of a public participation plan (PPP).

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option:
    The PPP is due by a date specified by MDEQ in the certificate of coverage and describes how the permittee will facilitate the involvement of the public in development of the watershed management plan. Jurisdictions can collaborate with watershed partners on developing the plan. One plan can be submitted for the entire planning area.
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:
    A draft PPP is due at time of application, with implementation within one year of receiving the certificate of coverage from MDEQ. Permittee must follow local public notice requirements regarding the implementation of its storm water management plan; establish a citizen advisory committee to encourage public involvement in the storm water management plan; and cooperate with local stream or watershed protection organizations.
Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination

Both permit options require Illicit Discharge Elimination Plans (IDEPs). An IDEP is a program to find, prioritize, and eliminate illicit connections and minimize illicit discharges to the municipal drainage system or waters of the state. The IDEP must include routine dry weather screening at least every five years and must address infiltration of seepage from sanitary sewers and onsite sewage disposal systems, where applicable.

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option:
    The IDEP is due one year after the certificate of coverage is issued.
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:
    The IDEP is due one year after the certificate of coverage is issued.
    MDEQ’s Illicit Discharge Elimination Plan Guidance
  • Sample Illicit Discharge Elimination Plans:
    Following are sample illicit discharge elimination plans developed in meeting the Watershed Based Permit Option. Although this information may be helpful to communities utilizing the Jurisdictional Permit Option, communities should rely on the specific requirements for this permit option.

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Construction Site Runoff Control

The construction site runoff control requirement is primarily met through the State of Michigan’s Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control Act (Part 91 of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act). Although in some instances the enforcing agency for soil erosion is not the same as the holder of the stormwater permit. Part 91 still meets most of the Phase II requirements for the community. (For example, a county may be the enforcing agency for a local community.)

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option:
    The flexibility of the watershed-based permit allows communities to decide the applicability of controlling construction site runoff in their community. In rapidly urbanizing areas, communities may decide that in order to preserve water quality, they need do more than the state law requirements. In this case, language could be added to the watershed management plan and storm water pollution prevention initiative focusing on strict soil erosion and sedimentation control.
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:
    In addition to being in compliance with the state soil erosion and sedimentation control law, the permittee must notify the proper enforcing agencies of any non-compliance.

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Post-Construction Storm Water Management

Storm water management from post-construction runoff is a large component of this program. Both permit options require this topic be addressed, however, the watershed based permit option allows more flexibility in its implementation.

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option:
    Post-construction storm water runoff should be addressed both in the watershed management plan and in the storm water pollution prevention initiative (SWPPI). The SWPPI should ensure that new development and redevelopment areas have site appropriate, cost effective Best Management Practices. This can be accomplished through the use of a stormwater ordinance. Sample ordinances include: Canton Township, Salem Township, Washtenaw County, and Wayne County.
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:
    This permit option required the development of a comprehensive storm water management plan for development, implementation, and enforcement of controls to protect designated uses in all receiving waters. It requires the development of ordinances or other regulatory measures to address post-construction storm water runoff from new development and redevelopment projects. This plan is due with permit application and must begin implementation within one year of receiving a certificate of coverage.

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Pollution Prevention and Good Housekeeping

Pollution prevention and good housekeeping requires the permittee to look examine and subsequently alter municipal operations to improve or protect water quality.

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option:
    This permit option gives the permittee flexibility in determining which pollution prevention activities are applicable to their circumstance and should be part of the Storm Water Pollution Prevention Initiative (SWPPI). Specific activities the permittee should consider includes requirements to inspect and maintain structural controls, storm water conveyances, and roadways; properly dispose of operation and maintenance waste; design flood control projects for maximum pollution removal; and control pollution related to pesticide and fertilizer application.
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:
    This requirement is due with the permit application, with implementation starting within one year. Specific activities include those mentioned above in the watershed-based option plus requirements for employee and contractor training, maintaining fleet garages, and permanent labeling for new storm water outfalls.

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Both permit options require reporting to MDEQ on implementation of their permit.

  • Watershed-Based Permit Option:
    This is an annual report that must include:

    1. Documentation of actions taken to eliminate illicit discharges
    2. Schedules for elimination of illicit connections identified but not corrected,
    3. Documentation of the public education effort and evaluation of its effectiveness,
    4. Documentation of other actions taken to reduce the discharge of pollutants in storm water.
      View a sample annual report: Wayne County | Wayne County
  • Jurisdictional-Based Permit Option:
    The first year progress report must include an approvable storm water management plan. After the initial progress reports, semi-annual reports are required that demonstrate measurable goals or interim milestones met for each best management practice, and identify activities for the upcoming year.

Regulations, Permits & Applications »

Please submit questions, corrections, or comments to the Clinton River Watershed Council at (248) 601-0606 or