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A revised version of the Rule 6 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) general permit for Storm Water Runoff Associated with Industrial Activity became effective November 26, 2003. The revised Rule 6 (327 IAC 15-6) is consistent with Phase II federal Storm Water requirements. The IDEM Office of Water Quality provides a comprehensive online guidance on obtaining a Rule 6 permit.
Under the revised rule, most industrial facilities in Indiana are subject to the Rule 6 permitting requirements if: 1) run-off from a precipitation event or from ice or snow melt waters are exposed to (come into contact with) the facility's manufacturing processing activities, raw materials storage areas, or intermediate products storage areas; and, 2) that run-off then leaves the facility from one, or several, point source(s) that discharge into a Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4), or directly into the waters of the state.
It is always the facility operator, rather than the property owner, that is responsible for compliance with Rule 6, and/or other Storm Water discharge limitations and requirements.
Thirty-two (32) specific categories of industrial activities are often included within these parameters, as well as the following facilities:
There are three (3) groups of facilities that may not be subject to Rule 6 requirements:
To obtain a conditional no exposure exclusion, a facility must certify on a conditional no exposure certification form [PDF] submitted to IDEM, and demonstrate during a subsequent IDEM inspection, that there are no industrial activities or materials exposed to storm water. Industrial materials and activities include, but are not limited to, material handling equipment or activities; industrial machinery; raw materials, intermediate products, by-products, and final products; or waste products. Material handling activities include storage, loading and unloading transportation or conveyance, of any raw material, intermediate product, by-product, final product or waste product.
Facilities wishing to operate under a Rule 6 permit first must submit a Notice of Intent (NOI) to the IDEM Office of Water Quality (form available on the IDEM Forms page):
IDEM-Office of Water Quality
Rule 6 Storm Water Specialist
100 North Senate Avenue, MC 65-42
Indianapolis, IN 46204-2251
Next, the facility must develop and implement a Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWP3), and submit a completed SWP3 Checklist Form (available on the IDEM Forms page) certifying to IDEM that such a plan is in place. The SWP3 Checklist Form must be signed by a qualified professional, and submitted to IDEM within 365 days of the submittal of the NOI letter. A "qualified professional" is a person "trained and experienced in storm water treatment techniques and related fields as may be demonstrated by state registration, professional certification, experience, or completion of coursework that enable the individual to make sound, professional judgments regarding storm water control or treatment and monitoring, pollutant fate and transport, and drainage planning."
The SWP3 itself must be retained at the facility, and made available for review during any on-site inspection. Periodically, the plan must be reviewed, and revised if changes at the facility alter conditions that could affect run-off.
If IDEM notifies a facility that their SWP3 is ineffective or deficient, a facility representative must make the required changes to the SWP3 and submit the amended plan within 60 days of the written notification.
The facility must implement a comprehensive storm water monitoring plan that demonstrates that the Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWP3) is effectively limiting and reducing contaminates in storm water discharges. Some of the sampling requirements are:
All facilities regulated under Rule 6 must submit an annual report to IDEM in accordance with 327 IAC 15-6-7.5. The annual report should include the following information:
The annual report must contain information obtained during the previous year of regulation and be submitted initially no later than three hundred sixty-five (365) days from the initial NOI submittal date or the expiration date of the previous five (5) year permit term. Subsequent annual report submittals shall be provided no later than three hundred sixty-five (365) days from the previous report in years two (2) through five (5).
Once an application for a Rule 6 permit or conditional no exposure exclusion is submitted to IDEM, it generally will be processed by the IDEM Office of Water Quality within 30 days.
A Rule 6 permit must be renewed every 5 years, or for those who do not need a permit, the conditional no exposure exclusions also must be renewed every 5 years. NOI letters for new facilities are due at IDEM 90 days before operations begin. Renewal NOI letters should be submitted to IDEM 90 days before the existing permit expires. Neither Rule 6 permits, nor exclusions are transferable, so if the facility changes hands, the new owner/operator must reapply for a permit or exclusion within 60 days of the transfer.
A Notice of Termination (NOT) letter must be submitted to IDEM if the facility is:
A termination request due to closure or ownership transfer must be submitted within 30 days of the date of closure or transfer. For facility representatives seeking a no exposure exclusion, the NOT request letter must be submitted with a completed
conditional no exposure certification form [PDF]. For facility representatives claiming that stormwater run-off is directed to a combined sewer system, the NOT request letter must be submitted with a certification letter from the responsible party of the combined sewer system, on responsible party letterhead.
Facilities operating under a Rule 6 permit are assessed a $100 annual fee every January.
To obtain additional information regarding storm water run-off associated with industrial activity, see the Industrial Storm Water Permitting webpage.
Questions may be directed to IDEM OWQ Rule 6 staff at (800) 451-6027, ext. 4-5029.