The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized regulations for storm water management in smaller communities - known as NPDES Phase II communities - in 2000. This proposed rule is designed to comply with the requirements of the Clean Water Act and to further protect our nation’s streams, rivers and beaches from polluted storm water runoff. EPA designated the Department of Ecology to implement the rule for Washington State. This permit, called the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System, Phase II (or NPDES, for short) took effect in January 2007 and includes over 80 cities and five counties in Western Washington. The term of the current permit runs through June 2019.