MAHER ORDINANCE (SAN FRANCISCO HEALTH CODE ARTICLE 22A) PROGRAM DESCRIPTION AND PROCESS
The Maher Program, per the City of San Francisco Health Code (SF HC) Article 22A, applies to sites seeking a Department of Building Inspection Permits and planning to move at least 50 cubic yards of soil in areas of Bay fill, areas of current or historical industrial use, areas within 150 feet of an elevated freeway and areas within 100 feet of sites with current or past underground storage tanks (including but not limited to current and former gas stations and dry cleaners).
For more information, see the SFDPH website:
MAHER PROCESS STEPS:
1) Application and fee to San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH);
2) Site history as described in the Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (Phase I ESA) defines the Recognized Environmental Conditions (RECs) to be addressed in the Subsurface Investigation;
3) Work Plan for Subsurface Investigation includes a subsurface evaluation, typically using soil, groundwater and soil vapor samples. The Work Plan must be submitted to SFDPH for approval then implementation. the Subsurface Investigation Report is submitted after the findings from the Subsurface Investigation are known;
4) The Site Mitigation Plan (SMP) addresses any RECs and current or future environmental issues on the property. The SMP must be approved by SFDPH and then implemented in the field; and
5) The Final Certified Project Report is prepared and submitted to SFDPH documenting SMP implementation.
HISTORY OF THE MAHER ORDINANCE
The Maher Ordinance was created in 1996 and requires that properties located along certain portions of San Francisco known to be underlain by artificial bay-margin fill be evaluated for the potential presence of soil or groundwater contamination prior to issuance of a grading or building permit on projects disturbing at least 50 cubic yards of soil. Compliance generally requires a site history review, development of a work plan for soil and groundwater testing, and submittal of a Site Mitigation Plan with recommendations for managing exposure to any hazardous materials disturbed during construction
UPDATES TO THE MAHER ORDINANCE
The City of San Francisco adopted major updates to Article 22A of the San Francisco Public Health Code (Maher Ordinance) in August 2013. These changes expand the types and number of properties potentially subject to SFDPH review and oversight related to the characterization and mitigation of hazardous materials in soil, soil vapor, and groundwater. A map of areas subject to potential Maher Ordinance rules has been developed. In addition, regardless of the location, the SFDPH requires a review for any property that meets one of the following criteria:
1) A property which potentially contains hazardous or contaminated soil or groundwater;
2) A property which was historically zoned for industrial use;
3) A property which has ever contained an underground storage tank (UST);
4) A property which is located within 100 feet of a current or former UST; and
5) A property which is located within 150 feet of a freeway.
Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans, Dust Control Plans, Hazard Communication Plans, Erosion Control Plans, Haz Mat Storage Plans, Injury Illness Prevention Plans, OSHA Health and Safety Plans, and other engineering and safety documents could be required as part of a redevelopment project. A proposed redevelopment site may be subject to other environmental regulations in addition to the Maher Ordinance. These regulations include the following:
1) The San Francisco Health Code, Article 22B, Demolition and Construction Dust Control;
2) The California Air Resources Board Asbestos Airborne Toxic Control Measure for Construction and Grading;
3) The State Water Resources Control Board Waste Discharge Requirements or Order 2012-0006-DWQ Construction General Permit for Stormwater Discharges; and
4) The San Francisco Department of Public Works Order No. 158170 for Industrial Waste Discharges into the City’s Sewer System.