If you are involved in an construction project in California, it’s a good idea to ensure all the legal details are being attended to. Whether you are the contractor, the investor or another interested party, if a project is derailed because permits or other legal issues weren’t handled correctly, then you can lose time and money. One legal consideration for projects in the state has to do with storm water.

According to the California Water Board, a storm water discharge permit is required for certain construction projects. If a construction project will disturb an acre or more of soil, then one of these permits is required. If a project is connected to or a part of larger building plans, then a permit might also be required. Permit costs are calculated per project and are based in part on the risks the project might pose regarding erosion or pollutants.

The purpose of the permits are to monitor and control how storm water drainage is handled to mitigate some of the impact on the environment. When storm water drains from a construction site or a completed site, it often carries debris or pollutants with it. Those debris can harm the natural water resources of the state. When landscapes are disturbed, storm water runoff can also result in flash flooding or damage to nearby buildings, so the state wants to ensure these issues are thought out during construction.

Being involved in a construction project that has negative environmental consequences can mean long legal battles. Working with an experienced professional to avoid such issues might be helpful, and if issues do arise, having a professional on your side during proceedings can make a positive difference in the outcome.

Source: California Water Boards, “Storm Water Management in California,” accessed May 03, 2016