Sewer Backwater Ordinance
Reasons for Municipal Code Ordinance 15.12.110
Past developments of real property have installed plumbing fixtures that are below the level of the next upstream manhole/flushing inlet on the public sewer, or even below the level of the sewer main itself. Rather than a sewer blockage causing a back-up in the sewer main and overflowing at this manhole/flushing inlet as the system was intended to provide, the back-up instead seeks the lower point at the private sewer drainage system. These situations have led to needless damage to real property, needless expense to the public, and needless increase in risk to public health. All property owners should ensure that their property is properly protected from possible sewer back-ups by installing drainage ejection devices or backwater valves and backwater relief devices, removing unnecessary drainage fixtures, and ensuring that their property insurance provides adequate coverage for such a possibility. This ordinance confirms the city’s authority to require the property owner to install of such backwater valves and relief devices and be responsible for their maintenance; and further requires the filing of information regarding fixture levels in connection with additions of drainage fixtures and each property transfer as designated, so as to determine whether a valve, ejector, or relief device is required under the Municipal Code.
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