Chapter 10.20 Definitions

City Code Chapter

10.20.010 Definitions.

(Amended by Ordinances 176955, 179690, 182389, 191000 and 191736, effective July 1, 2024.)

  1. A. General.  For the purpose of this Title, certain abbreviations, terms, phrases, words and their derivatives will be construed as specified in this Chapter.  Throughout this Title, the following words and phrases will be construed as set forth in this Section, unless the context requires otherwise.
  2. B. Definitions.
    1. 1. "Accepted" means, for projects in the public right-of-way, that the required plans have been reviewed by the Director and have been found to be in conformance with the Erosion and Sediment Control Regulations.
    2. 2. "Applicant" means the person who applies for a permit.
    3. 3. "Approval" or "Approved" means a determination by the Director that the provisions of this Title and the Erosion and Sediment Control Manual have been met.
    4. 4. "Bedrock" means in-place solid rock.
    5. 5. "Best Management Practice" or "BMP" means a physical, chemical, structural or managerial practice that prevents, reduces, or treats the contamination of water, or which prevents or reduces soil erosion or sediment transport.
    6. 6. "Bureau" means the Bureau of Environmental Services, the Portland Permitting & Development, Portland Parks & Recreation, the Bureau of Transportation and the Portland Water Bureau.
    7. 7. "Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control" or "CPESC" means a person who has been so determined by the Soil and Water Conservation Society and the International Erosion Control Association.
    8. 8. "Contract Work" means capital improvement program or other City funded public works activities provided by an outside contractor in compliance with the City’s Standard Construction Specifications and other applicable special standards.
    9. 9. "Denuded" means land that has had the natural vegetative cover or other cover removed leaving the soil exposed to the elements.
    10. 10. "Development" means any human induced change to improved or unimproved real estate, whether public or private, including but not limited to construction, installation, or expansion of a building or other structure, land division, street construction, drilling, and site alteration such as that due to dredging, grading, paving, parking or storage improvements, excavating, filling or clearing.
    11. 11. "Director" means those persons specified in Section 10.10.030 or those persons’ designees.
    12. 12. “Discharge” means any disposal, injection, dumping, spilling, pumping, emitting, emptying, leaching, leaking, or placing of any material so that such material leaves the site.
    13. 13. "Disturbance Area" means an area where soils are exposed or disturbed by development, both existing and proposed.  The Disturbance Area includes staging and storage areas, structures, and areas needed for vehicle access and maneuvering.  When a Disturbance Area is delineated for new development, it must be a contiguous area.  Agricultural and pasture land and native vegetation planted for resource enhancement are not considered part of the Disturbance Area.
    14. For utility lines, trenches, or other similar linear work, the Disturbance Area includes staging and storage areas, the linear feature, and the areas on each side of the linear feature 15 feet wide for public works projects and 10 feet wide for all other projects.  Where necessary for safety in deep trenches, the Disturbance Area may be made wide enough to allow for bending and shoring of the trench.
    15. 14. "Drainage Control" means the collection, conveyance and discharge of stormwater.
    16. 15. "Environmental Overlay Zone" means any location in a “C” or “P” overlay zone shown on Official Zoning Maps or described in Chapter 33.430 of the City of Portland Zoning Code.
    17. 16. "Erosion" means the wearing away of the ground surface as a result of the effects of gravity, wind, water or ice.
    18. 17. "Erosion and Sediment Control Manual" means the collection of administrative rules adopted to implement the purpose and intent of this Title.
    19. 18. "Final Grade" means the finished grade of the site that conforms to the approved plan.
    20. 19. "Grade" means the vertical location of the ground surface.
    21. 20. "Ground Disturbing Activity" means any activity that exposes soil.
    22. 21. "Nuisance" (See Section 10.80.010 of this Title).
    23. 22. "Owner" means the person whose name and address are listed as the owner of the property by the County Tax Assessor on the County Assessment and Taxation records.
    24. 23. "Permanent Stabilization" means stabilization of exposed soil after construction to provide long-term soil stabilization.
    25. 24. "Permit" means an official document issued by the Director authorizing performance of a specified construction-related activity.
    26. 25. "Person" means any individual, partnership, association or corporation.
    27. 26. "Plan" means a text narrative, or graphic or schematic representation, with accompanying notes, schedules, specifications and other related documents.
    28. 27. "Pollutant" means any substance that is prohibited or limited by the provisions of Chapter 17.39 of the City Code, released or discharged in conjunction with Development.
    29. 28. "Responsible Party" means:
      1. a. The property Owner or person authorized to act on the Owner’s behalf; or
      2. b. Any person causing or contributing to a violation of this Title or the Erosion and Sediment Control Manual.
    30. 29. "Sediment" means mineral or organic matter discharged from a site.
    31. 30. "Site" means any lot, tract, parcel of land, right-of-way, or contiguous combination where any ground-disturbing activity occurs.   For utility lines, trenches or other similar linear work, the site includes only the Disturbance Area directly related to the linear work activity (see "Disturbance Area").
    32. 31. "Slope" means an inclined ground surface, the inclination of which is expressed as a ratio of horizontal distance to vertical distance.
    33. 32. "Soil" means naturally occurring surficial deposits overlaying bedrock.
    34. 33. "Special Site" means a site that has conditions, established in the Erosion and Sediment Control Manual, that may require additional erosion, sediment, and pollutant control measures.
    35. 34. "Stabilization" means the process of establishing soil cover of plants, mulch, sod, matting, erosion control blankets, permanent structures, or other material and may be in combination with installation of temporary or permanent structures.
    36. 35. "Storm Drainage System" means facilities by which stormwater runoff is collected or conveyed, including but not limited to any roads with drainage systems, municipal streets, gutters, curbs, inlets, piped storm drains, culverts, pumping facilities, retention and detention basins, natural and constructed (or altered) drainage channels, reservoirs, and other drainage structures.
    37. 36. "Stormwater" means water runoff, snowmelt runoff or surface runoff and drainage.
    38. 37. “Temporary Stabilization” means stabilization of exposed soil during construction to provide short-term stabilization between construction activities.
    39. 38. "Visible or Measurable" means:
      1. a. Deposits or tracking of mud, dirt, sediment or similar material on public or private streets, adjacent property, or into the storm or surface water system, either by direct deposit, dropping, discharge or as a result of the action of erosion.
      2. b. Evidence of concentrated flows of water over bare soils, turbid or sediment laden flows, or on-site erosion such as rivulets on bare soil slopes, where the flow of water is not filtered or captured on the site.
      3. c. Earth slides, mud flows, earth sloughing, or other earth movement which leaves the property.
    40. 39. "Water Body" means rivers, sloughs, continuous and intermittent streams and seeps, ponds, lakes, aquifers, and wetlands.
    41. 40. "Wetland" means an area that is inundated or saturated by surface or ground water at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and which under normal circumstances does support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions.  Wetlands include swamps, marshes, bogs and similar areas.

10.20.020 Referenced Regulations.

(Amended by Ordinances 176955, 182671, 191000 and 191736, effective July 1, 2024.)

  1. All referenced regulations are available as specified below:
  2. A. Erosion and Sediment Control Manual.  The Erosion and Sediment Control Manual is maintained by the Portland Permitting & Development.
  3. B. City of Portland Plant List.  The City of Portland Plant List is maintained by the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability.
  4. C. City of Portland Standard Construction Specifications.  The City of Portland Standard Construction Specifications are maintained by the City Engineer.