Water Quality Protection

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The Water Quality Protection Program prevents, controls, and eliminates pollutants from entering the storm drain system. Pollutants entering the storm drain system eventually end up in local creeks, rivers, lakes, lagoons and ocean.

As cities develop, increasing amounts of asphalt, concrete and other impervious surfaces blanket the once pervious landscape. Cities install conveyance systems that direct the flow of water away from local streets to prevent flooding. This conveyance system sends water from the streets directly to the nearest creek, river, lake, lagoon, and eventually to the ocean. Directing water away from populated areas prevents flooding and damage to our building; however it causes many environmental problems. When water enters a storm drain, it carries pollutants from streets, (e.g. motor oil, pet waste, dirt, sediments from eroded areas, trash and pesticides from landscaped areas). Over time, these pollutants negatively affect the water quality and habitats of local watersheds.  

To comply with federal Clean Water Act regulations and to protect the health, safety, and welfare of residents and the environment, the City of Vista's Water Quality Protection Program oversees different activities that help prevent, control, and treat storm water pollution.

  • Annual commercial and industrial business inspections
  • Illegal discharge detection and elimination program
  • Water quality monitoring, construction site erosion and sediment control inspections
  • Development and review of watershed-related land development guidelines
  • Public education and special events to encourage residential participation

Jurisdictional Runoff Management Program

On May 8, 2013, the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board adopted and issued a permit (Order No. R9-2013-0001; amended in 2015 as Order No. R9-2015-0001; and amended again in 2015 as Order No. R9-2015-0100) to all incorporated cities in San Diego County, including the City of Vista, as well as the County of San Diego, Port of San Diego, and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority.  The permit governs the regulatory management of stormwater runoff and discharges into local waterbodies.  The City of Vista’s Jurisdictional Runoff Management Program (JRMP) document describes strategies and activities the City will implement to comply with the permit. 

In 2017, the City updated its JRMP to make it consistent with Regional Board-approved changes made to the Carlsbad Water Quality Improvement Plan (WQIP).  A summary of these revisions can be found in the Executive Summary and Introduction sections of the JRMP, which is provided below: 

Specific program areas

Contact Information:

Water Quality Protection Program waterquality@cityofvista.com
Stormwater Hotline: 760.643.2804
Cheryl Filar, Stormwater Program Manager
P: 760.643.5412
E: cfilar@cityofvista.com


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