On October 25, 2013, The Daily Caller reported that the City of San Jose closed down the car wash fund raiser Lincoln High School cheerleaders put on to try to raise money to attend a national competition. The San Jose Mercury reported that the local environmental officials had warned the Lincoln High School cheerleaders that the car wash violated the city's water discharge laws. The City’s position was/is that anything going into the storm drain that is not storm water or rain water is a pollutant. The city also provided suggestions such as conducting car washes over gravel, grassy area, or other earthen areas; ensure that wash water (soapy or not) does not run into a street, gutter, or storm drain; any wash water from paved areas should be contained and diverted either into the sanitary sewer system or a landscaped area.
These labyrinthine environmental regulations do not just apply to industry, the environmental regulations apply to high school sports teams raising money as well as to individuals wash their cars at home.
Enforcement should apply a rule of reason and thankfully no one was charged – yet.
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