Permanent BMP Inspection and Maintenance Program Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a Permanent BMP?

Permanent Best Management Practices (BMPs) are drainage features, structures, or areas designed to remove pollutants from storm water runoff, or minimize the quantity of runoff discharged from a property. These facilities are required to be incorporated into permitted development or redevelopment projects and serve a functional purpose to improve the quality of water that flows to our local creeks, lagoons, and beaches. They are also referred to as Stormwater BMPs, Structural BMPs, Treatment Control BMPs or Low Impact Development (LID) features. Typical Permanent BMPs include Vegetated Swales, Bioretention Areas, Infiltration Basins, Storm Drain Filter Inserts, and Pervious Pavement.

2. Why does the City of Encinitas require Permanent BMPs to be inspected and maintained?

Proper operation and regular maintenance of permanent BMPs ensures that the facility reduces the amount of pollutants that end up in our creeks, lagoons, and beaches. These BMPs help to improve water quality and minimize human and environmental health risks. The Municipal Stormwater Permit (issued by the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control (RWQCB)) requires that each property owner annually verify that permanent BMPs installed on their property are adequately maintained.

3. What should I do if I am unsure how to complete the online Maintenance Verification form or cannot locate the permanent BMPs on my property?

Look up your addres on the City's myEncinitas mapping application here or contact Clean Water Program staff for assistance. We are happy to provide help in understanding the Maintenance Verification form, identifying the location of BMP(s) on your property, or determining the operation and maintenance needs of your BMP(s). Staff can be reached via phone: 760-633-2857, or email:

4. What happens during the City’s inspection of Permanent BMPs on my property?

If requested or as required by the Municipal Stormwater Permit, a City inspector will visit the property to validate the proper maintenance and function of Permanent BMPs. Inspection actions will be documented via an inspection report and photos of permanent BMPs may be taken. If access is limited, the City inspector will schedule an inspection with the responsible party.

5. What happens if I don’t certify that my Permanent BMP(s) have been maintained?

The City is responsible for ensuring the proper maintenance and function of all stormwater facilities annually. Failure of a responsible party to provide adequate inspection and maintenance information constitutes a violation of the City ordinance as well as any property related agreements or covenants and the Municipal Stormwater Permit. It is the goal of the City to minimize the burden on property owners to fulfill these requirements and obtain your voluntary compliance. The Online Permanent BMP Maintenance Verification form has been developed to provide property owners with a simple way to validate the proper maintenance and function of these facilities, and to help the City meet State mandated requirements. City Staff is available to answer questions or meet with you at your property to go over inspection and maintenance obligations. If Maintenance Verificaton is not received in a timely manner, City actions may include issuance of a Warning Letter, Notice of Violation, or assessment of monetary citations as defined in the Storwater Ordinance (EMC 20.08)