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City of Silver Lake - Ordinance #92

City of Silver Lake


The City Council of the City of Silver Lake, Minnesota does hereby ordain:

Section 1: Chapter 2.8 of the Silver Lake Municipal Zoning Code shall be added to read as follows:


Purpose: This ordinance is adopted for the purpose of 1) regulating the movement of sediment and the installation/maintenance of approved Best Management Practices (BMP’s) as well as 2) regulating uncontained debris, at building and construction projects involving earth-disturbing activities within the jurisdiction of the City of Silver Lake. The objective of the City in adopting this ordinance is to provide for a uniform method of regulating the runoff of soil, dirt or other organic or inorganic material into Waters of the State as well as regulating wind borne or otherwise uncontrolled construction debris.

Scope: These standards are derived from and in agreement with National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) standards and other local Water Resource Management Rules. The provisions of this ordinance shall be in effect from the first land disturbance to the establishment of permanent yard or ground cover.

Applicability: The requirement of this ordinance will apply to an owner or authorized agent who intends to build new construction or an addition to existing improvements, or excavate over five cubic yards of soil or disturb established vegetation over 500 sq. feet.


ACCESS AVENUE – A strictly construction related access to a construction site or property not considered a driveway due to it not being in front of a house or garage.

APPROVED METHOD – A practice or widely used process that is recognized and accepted throughout the industry or, an acceptable alternative able to achieve or exceed the standards of the prescribed method.

BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICE (BMP) – Erosion and sediment control and water quality management practices that are the most effective and practicable means of controlling, preventing, and minimizing degradation of surface water.

BOARD OF APPEALS – The Silver Lake City Council or the group designated by the City Council as the board of appeals.

CITY – City of Silver Lake

CODE OFFICIAL – The Sediment and Erosion Control Inspector, Building Official, Code Enforcement officer, or other designated authority charged by the Silver Lake City Council, County or State with the duties of administration and enforcement of this ordinance, or a duly authorized representative.

DAY- Any calendar day or portion thereof.

EARTH-DISTURBING ACTIVITIES – Any construction activity involving significant movement, disturbance, or removal of permanent ground cover of the soil from the construction site. Examples would include new construction, additions, or other activity deemed by the inspector to qualify as significant.

EROSION CONTROL – Measures employed to prevent erosion including but not limited to: soil stabilization practices, limited grading, mulch, temporary or permanent cover, and construction phasing.

JURISDICTION – Municipal limits of the City of Silver Lake.

NATIONAL POLLUTANT DISCHARGE ELIMINATION SYSTEM (NPDES) – The program for issuing, modifying, revoking, terminating, monitoring, and enforcing permits under the Clean Water Act (sections 301, 318, 402, and 405) and the United States Code of Federal Regulations Title 33, sections 1317, 1328, 1342, and 1345.

PERMANENT YARD or GROUND COVER – 70% density vegetation or permanent ground cover over 100% of the pervious area.

S.E.C. - Sediment and Erosion Control.

SEDIMENT CONTROL – Methods employed to prevent sediment from leaving the site including but not limited to: silt fence, sediment traps, earth dikes, storm drain inlet protection.

THIS ORDINANCE - All the provisions of this document as adopted, signed and dated.

WATERS of the STATE – (As defined in Minn. Stat. 115.01, subd. 22) All streams, lakes, ponds, marshes, watercourses, waterways, wells, springs, reservoirs, aquifers, irrigation systems, drainage systems, and all other bodies or accumulation of water, surface or underground, natural or artificial, public or private, which are contained in, flow through, or border upon the state or any portion thereof.


A. Any responsible party who shall violate any of the provisions of this Ordinance or fails to comply therewith, or who shall violate or fail to comply with any order made thereunder, or who shall fail to comply with such an order as affirmed or modified by the city council or by a court of competent jurisdiction, within the time fixed herein or therein, shall be guilty of a Civil offense. If upon subsequent warnings and prescribed and documented communication, the violation remains substantially unresolved, the violator shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to the provisions of State Statute regulating the administration thereof.

B. The sequence of violations and penalties:

1. When a violation is noted, the responsible party shall be given notice of the violation in writing on site, and will be notified by phone, fax, or e-mail. A reasonable amount of time, not to exceed 24 hours, will be given to abate the violation. A re-inspection fee will apply.
2. If the violation noted is not abated or addressed upon re-inspection, a STOP WORK ORDER will be posted, and a $50 fine will be levied for each day of the violation including the day of first notification through the day of satisfactory follow-up inspection. The responsible party shall remedy the violation, and call for a follow-up inspection. Upon satisfactory re-inspection, the responsible party will be required to pay the fine prior to the removal of the Stop Work Order.
3. If the violation continues, the Stop Work Order shall remain on the premises and the fine will continue to accrue for each calendar day the violation is present. After seven (7) days of non-compliance, the City will have the option of correcting the violation and assessing all costs to the responsible party. All fines and costs must be paid prior to the removal of the Stop Work Order. At this time all of the prior civil judgments will be due and the City will have the option of filing Criminal charges. Criminal Charges being defined as a misdemeanor and subject to State Statute regulating the enforcement of such penalties.


A. The S.E.C. Inspector (SECI), Building Official, Code Enforcement Official or their representatives or other authority designated by the city is authorized to administer and enforce the provisions of this ordinance.

B. The authority for enforcement of this ordinance rests exclusively with the City of Silver Lake.

C. Prior to the commencement of any construction activity, the contractor/homeowner shall schedule a site inspection to verify the proper placement, installation, and efficacy of installed BMP’s.


A. Silt Fences: Silt fences shall be inspected and maintained to these standards:
1. Silt Fences shall be established at down slope perimeters prior to disturbing upslope areas, shall be maintained to the standards of this ordinance and shall not be removed until the site has been permanently re-established with lawn or 70% permanent vegetative growth or other approved permanent ground cover.
2. Be entrenched a minimum of six (6) inches unless such trenching will substantially damage tree roots or other natural resources. Alternatives such as berming the silt fence shall be used to prevent such damage.
3. Be of construction substantial enough to hold all sheet flow run-off generated at an individual site until it can either infiltrate or seep through silt fence pores.
4. Receive maintenance within 24 hours when silt has filled 1/3 of silt fence height.
5. Shall be re-stretched or re-established within 24 hours when allowed to sag more than 1/3 its intended height.
6. Silt fencing damaged or removed due to construction practices shall be repaired or re-installed within 24 hours of the conclusion of the practice.

B. Other Sediment Control Methods:
1. Methods other than silt fences may be installed, provided that the method selected is effective in preventing sediment from leaving the property and approved by (SECI). They must be installed pursuant to BMPs and any applicable manufacturer’s installation instructions. If a selected other-method is determined to be inappropriate or ineffective, the Inspector may order that a silt fence be installed to provide the protection required.
C. Alternative Sediment Control Methods:
2. Alternative Sediment Control Methods such as shredded wood mulch or compost shall be temporarily allowed when conditions make it infeasible or impractical to erect silt fences. Silt Fences or an approved Sediment Control method shall be installed prior to disturbing upslope areas, and maintained according to this ordinance.


A. Ground Cover:

1. Time frames for temporary and permanent vegetation for all exposed pervious areas shall be as follows: 21 days for slopes 10:1 and flatter, 14 days for slopes between 10:1 and 3:1, and 7 days for slopes 3:1 and steeper. If sod or permanent seed and mulch cannot be applied within the given timeframe, temporary ground cover of type one mulch (straw/hay) shall be applied within the given timeframe until permanent cover/vegetation is established.


Temporary driveways or site access avenues shall be established and maintained throughout the construction process or until a permanent driveway is established. Driveways and access avenues shall meet and be maintained according to the following standards:

A. Design:

1. The temporary driveway and/or site access avenue(s) shall be constructed to eliminate the passage or tracking of mud or other material from the site to a public road, street, sidewalk or right of way.
2. The drive shall be a constructed of aggregate 1” to 3” in diameter and shall be a minimum of 6” thick. The aggregate shall extend the full width of the entrance/exit. The S.E.C. inspector or other code official shall have the authority to increase the required width as necessary on a case by case basis.
3. The utilization of an alternative method shall meet or exceed the requirements and intent of the 1” to 3” aggregate method described in 6.1.2 and shall meet the definition of “Approved Methods” as described in the definitions section of this ordinance.

B. Maintenance:
1. The temporary driveway shall be maintained in such a way that
vehicles will not rut the area and that mud, dirt, clay or other material will not be conveyed to the street, road, sidewalk or right of way. This may include regular maintenance and topdressing of the material as it accumulates sediment from traffic.
2. Streets, sidewalks, and curbs shall be swept or scraped whenever sediment tracking occurs and at the completion of each work day.
3. Curbs, gutters and sidewalks shall be protected from damage due to construction related activities.


A. Debris Containment: It shall be the responsibility of the contractor to maintain the construction site in a such manner that it does not detract from or interfere with the adjoining neighborhood.
1. All construction sites shall have an adequate and approved method for the containment of construction debris.
2. Dumpsters and/or trailers shall be sized appropriately for the project and shall be emptied at intervals that do not allow for the accumulation of debris above the recommended limit of the container.
3. Fenced areas used as debris containment shall be permitted so long as they are properly maintained and emptied as needed. The Inspector shall have the authority, after sufficient warning, to require the removal of the fenced area and require a dumpster or other means of commercial debris removal should the fenced area not be maintained adequately and regularly.
4. Dumpsters, trailers, or other approved containers shall be maintained in such a way as to prevent the contents from becoming wind borne. Any debris blown out of the container or otherwise blown from the construction site shall be immediately retrieved and secured properly.

B. Storage of Construction Debris or Byproducts:
1. Construction debris or byproducts shall not be allowed to accumulate on construction sites or adjacent lots. Items such as pallets, used lumber, discarded excess concrete or other material shall be properly disposed of in a timely manner according to state and local laws.

C. Weeds or Underbrush
1. Weeds or underbrush shall not be allowed to propagate on a construction site. Measures shall be taken to mitigate tall weeds or underbrush that may harbor rats, mice or other animals.


A. When it is claimed that the provisions of this ordinance have been wrongly applied or interpreted by the S.E.C. Inspector, Building Official or Code Enforcement Officer, the aggrieved person may appeal the decision of the code official as provided in this section.

B. The aggrieved person must first request the code official to reconsider his decision. The request to reconsider must be made within ten (10) days from the date of the code official’s initial decision and must submit in writing the reasons for the request for reconsideration.

C. A person aggrieved by the final decision of the code official may appeal the decision to the City Council or their designated Board of Appeals. The appeal must be in writing and made within ten (10) days of the date of the final decision of the code official.

D. All requests and appeals specified in this section shall be made in writing. An aggrieved party who does not appeal within the time limits specified shall be deemed to have waived his right to appeal and shall be bound by the latest decision in the appeal process.


This Ordinance shall be in full force and effect from and after the date of its passage and publication according to law.

Passed and adopted by the City Council of the City of Silver Lake this 20th day of August, 2018.


Bruce Bebo, Its Mayor


Jon Jerabek, Its City Clerk

(Published in The McLeod County Chronicle August 29, 2018)