2020 Private Sewer Lateral Ordinance

On Feb. 3, 2020, City Council adopted an amendment to the Sewer Lateral Ordinance (Municipal Code 7.38.432) to help reduce sanitary sewer overflows.

Pipes that carry wastewater from private buildings out to the sewer mains can get damaged or become defective, making stormwater and groundwater seep into private sewer laterals which then gets carried into the citywide sewer collection system. Too much wastewater, stormwater, and groundwater can cause sanitary sewer overflows on our streets creating a public health hazard for residents, and destroy the water quality in the City’s creeks and lagoons.

2020 Private Sewer Lateral Ordinance Update

Effective Dec. 1, 2020, the revised private sewer lateral ordinance has four prompts that require a property to conduct a sewer lateral inspection:

  • Sale of real property
  • Improvements to property that are greater than or equal to $90,000
  • Sewer class change as defined by section 3.54.020
  • Sewer lateral backup or blockage resulting in a sanitary sewer overflow for commercial or multifamily residential buildings

If any of the four prompts listed above apply to your property, then a sewer lateral inspection is needed.

More information

For a quick summary of the 2020 PSLO update, see the brochure mailed to property owners in November 2020. To learn more details about the updated ordinance, visit the Private Sewer Lateral Administrative Regulations.

Need the Inspection Form? Find it here: Private Sewer Lateral Inspection Form. Please submit your inspection forms at pwencroachment@cityofsanmateo.org.

Encroachment Permits

City Contact

 Public Works Department, email:pslp@cityofsanmateo.org