Article 5.5. Waste Water Control of California Public Utilities Code >> Division 6. >> Chapter 8. >> Article 5.5.
The board shall supervise and regulate sewage disposal
within a special district, including the fixing of standards,
contracts, issuance of licenses or permits, practices and schedules
for or in connection with waste water control and sewage disposal
functions of such special district.
Without limiting in any way the provisions of this division,
and in addition to the powers granted therein, the board may make
and enforce such regulations for the control of quantity, quality and
flow of waste water within the boundaries of a special district as
are not in conflict with the general laws of the state. "Waste water"
shall include all sewage, industrial and other wastes and waters,
whether treated or untreated, discharged into or permitted to enter a
community sewer system connected to or directly into a district
interceptor for treatment in sewage disposal facilities of a special
Rules and regulations pertaining to the control of quantity,
quality or flow of waste water may provide for any or all of the
(a) Periodic technical reports to the district from contributors
or dischargers into the district's system.
(b) The issuance of permits or licenses by the district as a
condition of discharging waste water for treatment in sewage disposal
facilities of a special district.
(c) The installation by the contributor or discharger of
pretreatment works or facilities.
(d) The installation by the contributor or discharger of waste
water sampling and inspection facilities.
(e) Procedures for enforcement of waste water standards and
regulations adopted by the district and remedies for violation
(f) Entry by the district upon private property to make surveys,
inspections or samplings.
(g) Such other provisions as are necessary to effectuate the
control of the quantity, quality and flow of waste water within a
No person shall discharge waste water into a community sewer
system connected to or directly into a district interceptor which
will result in contamination, pollution or a nuisance. All discharges
of waste water which are, or could be, harmful to or unreasonably
affect the sewage disposal facilities of a district, or which impair
or unreasonably affect the operation and maintenance of such
facilities, or which violate quantity, quality and flow standards
adopted by the district, and all waste water discharges which
unreasonably affect, or could unreasonably affect, the quality of the
district's treatment plant effluent in such a manner that receiving
water quality requirements established by law cannot be met by the
district, shall constitute a nuisance for the purposes of this
Whenever a discharge of waste water is in violation of the
district's regulations or otherwise causes or threatens to cause a
condition of contamination, pollution or nuisance, as defined in this
article, the district may petition the superior court for the
issuance of a preliminary or permanent injunction, or both, as may be
appropriate, restraining the continuance of such discharge. In any
civil action brought under this section, it shall not be necessary to
allege or prove at any stage of the proceedings that irreparable
damage will occur should the temporary restraining order, preliminary
injunction or permanent injunction not be issued or that the remedy
at law is inadequate and the temporary restraining order, preliminary
injunction or permanent injunction shall issue without such
allegations and without such proof.
(a) Any person who fails to comply with any order issued by
the district, shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed ten
thousand dollars ($10,000) for each day in which the discharge,
violation, or refusal occurs.
(b) Any person who intentionally or negligently violates any order
issued by the district for violation of rules regulating or
prohibiting discharge of waste water which causes or threatens to
cause a condition of contamination, pollution or nuisance, as defined
in this article, may be liable civilly in a sum not to exceed
twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000) for each day in which the
(c) The attorney of the district, upon request of the board, shall
petition the superior court to impose, assess and recover the sums
provided for in subdivisions (a) and (b). In determining the amount
of the fine the court shall take into consideration all relevant
circumstances, including, but not limited to, the extent of harm
caused by the violation, the nature and persistence of the violation,
the length of time over which the violation occurs and corrective
action, if any, attempted or taken by the discharger.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, all civil fines
imposed by the court for a violation of this section shall be
distributed as follows:
(1) Fifty percent shall be transferred into the general fund of
the county in which the action to recover the fine was brought.
(2) Fifty percent shall be transferred once a month to the
treasurer of any municipal utility district in the county for deposit
in the funds of the district.
(e) Remedies under this section are in addition to and do not
supersede or limit any and all other remedies, civil or criminal, but
no liability shall be recoverable under this section for any
violation for which liability is recovered under Section 13575.5.
(a) The district may issue a complaint to any person on
whom civil liability may be imposed pursuant to this article. The
complaint shall allege the act or failure to act that constitutes a
violation of law, the provision of law authorizing civil liability to
be imposed pursuant to this article, and the proposed civil
(b) The complaint shall be served by personal notice or certified
mail on the person subject to the district's discharge and reporting
requirements, and shall inform the party served that a hearing shall
be conducted within 60 days after the party has been served. The
hearing shall be before a hearing officer designated by the board.
The person who has been issued a complaint may waive the right to a
hearing, in which case the district shall not conduct a hearing. A
person dissatisfied with the decision of the hearing officer may
appeal to the board of directors within 30 days of notice of the
hearing officer's decision.
(c) If after the hearing, or appeal, if any, it is found that the
person has violated reporting or discharge requirements, the hearing
officer or board may assess a fine against that person. In
determining the amount of the fine the hearing officer or board shall
take into consideration all relevant circumstances, including, but
not limited to, the extent of harm caused by the violation, the
nature and persistence of the violation, the length of time over
which the violation occurs and corrective action, if any, attempted
or taken by the discharger.
(d) Civil liability may be imposed by the district as follows:
(1) In an amount which does not exceed one thousand dollars
($1,000) for each day for knowingly or willfully failing or refusing
to furnish technical or monitoring reports.
(2) In an amount which does not exceed five thousand dollars
($5,000) for each day of intentionally or negligently discharging
hazardous waste, as defined in Section 25117 of the Health and Safety
Code, knowingly falsifying any information provided in any furnished
technical or monitoring report.
(3) In an amount which does not exceed ten dollars ($10) per
gallon for discharges in violation of any of the district's cease and
desist or other orders, or prohibitions issued, reissued, or adopted
by the district.
(e) All moneys collected under this section shall be deposited in
a special district account and shall be made available for the
monitoring, treatment, and control of discharges into district
(f) Unless appealed, orders setting administrative civil liability
shall become effective and final upon issuance thereof, and payment
shall be made within 30 days. Copies of these orders shall be served
by personal service or by registered mail upon the party served with
the complaint and upon other persons who appeared at the hearing and
requested a copy.
(g) No liability shall be recoverable under this section for any
violation for which liability is recovered under Section 13575.
Any party aggrieved by a final order issued by the board
under Section 13575.5, after granting review of a hearing officer
order, may obtain review of the order of the board in the superior
court by filing in the court a petition for writ of mandate within 30
days following the issuance of the order by the board. Any party
aggrieved by a final order of a hearing officer issued under Section
13575.5 for which the board denies review may obtain review of the
order of the hearing officer in the superior court by filing in the
court a petition of writ of mandate within 30 days following the
denial of review by the board.
If no aggrieved party petitions for writ of mandate within the
time provided by this section, an order of the board or a hearing
officer shall not be subject to review by any court or agency, except
that the board may grant review on its own motion of an order issued
under Section 13575.5 after the expiration of the time limits set by
(a) Within 30 days after service of a copy of a decision
and order issued by the board pursuant to Section 13575.5, any
aggrieved party may file with the superior court a petition for writ
of mandate for review thereof. Failure to file a petition shall not
preclude a party from challenging the reasonableness and validity of
a decision or order of a hearing officer or the board in any judicial
proceedings brought to enforce that decision or order or for other
(b) The evidence before the court shall consist of the record
before the board, including the hearing officer's record, and any
other relevant evidence which, in the judgment of the court, should
be considered to effectuate and implement the policies of this
division. In every such case, the court shall exercise its
independent judgment on the evidence.
(c) Except as otherwise provided in this section, subdivisions (e)
and (f) of Section 1094.5 of the Code of Civil Procedure shall
govern proceedings pursuant to this section.
Any person who intentionally discharges waste water in any
manner, in violation of any order issued by the district, which
results in contamination, pollution or a nuisance, as defined in this
article, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
Any person who knowingly makes any false statement or
representation in any record, report, plan, or other document filed
with the district, or who falsifies, tampers with, or knowingly
renders inaccurate any monitoring device or method required by the
district, shall be punished by a fine of not more than twenty-five
thousand dollars ($25,000) or by imprisonment in the county jail for
not more than six months, or by both.
Any abatement actions taken pursuant to the foregoing
sections with respect to contamination, pollution or nuisance, as
defined in this article, created by the discharge of waste water into
a community sewer system shall be taken against the agent or agency
operating such system and the contributor or contributors whose waste
creates the contamination, pollution or nuisance.
The district may enter upon private property of any person
and sample at, inspect or survey the waste water sampling
installation or pretreatment facilities or processes of any
contributor or discharger to ascertain whether district regulations
for control of quantity, quality and flow of waste water are being
complied with. Such inspections shall be made with the consent of the
owner or possessor of such facilities or, if such consent is
refused, with a warrant duly issued pursuant to the procedure set
forth in Title 13 (commencing with Section 1822.50) of Part 3 of the
Code of Civil Procedure. However, in the event of an emergency
affecting the public health or safety, such inspection may be made
without the consent or the issuance of a warrant. The district may
terminate or cause to be terminated sewage disposal or water services
to such property if a violation of any rule or regulation pertaining
to control of waste water is found to exist or if a discharge of
waste water causes or threatens to cause a condition of
contamination, pollution or nuisance, as defined in this article.