Walkthrough for Municipal Stormwater Permit Electronic Annual Reporting


The Western (2013-2018) and Eastern (2014-2019) Washington Eastern Municipal Stormwater permits require that permittees submit their annual reports online.

The first thing you'll need to do is determine who will do what in your organization. In the WQWebPortal there are four possible roles: Coordinator, Administrator, Signer, and Preparer. You will need one or more people to perform the following responsibilities:

  1. Coordinator or Signer to sign off on, and submit, the final report.
  2. Coordinator or Administrator to manage the people working on the report.
  3. Coordinator, Administrator, Signer or Preparer to fill in the annual report.

Note that only a Coordinator can do all three. Depending on how your organization is structured you may have one person performing all three responsibilities, a separate person for each responsibility, or multiple people for each.

In any case, there are three parts to filling in the annual report that your organization will have to follow:

Part 1:
Signer/Coordinator Signup
Part 2:
Preparer/Administrator Signup
Part 3:
Prepare and Submit Annual Report

Part 1 includes all of the following, and Part 2 includes just steps 1, 2, and 3:

  1. Create an account with Secure Access Washington.
  2. Create an account in the Water Quality Web Portal.
  3. Select roles in the Water Quality Web Portal.
  4. Create an Electronic Signature Account in the Water Quality Web Portal.
  5. Fill out the Electronic Signature Account Form.
  6. Invite (optionally) additional preparers and/or administrators.

Part 3 includes just two steps:

  1. Fill out your annual report.
  2. Submit your annual report.

Start Here by creating a SAW account (Part 1 or Part 2), or

Start Here by filling in the Annual Report (Part 3).

Step 1 - Secure Access Washington

Secure Access Washington, or SAW, is the portal used to access state government. Each individual person who will work on, or sign, the annual report must have a SAW account. If you already have a SAW account, you can skip forward to Step 2.

Your Signer/Coordinator must go through steps 1 through 6 before anyone else.

To get a SAW account:

Next Step is to add the Water Quality Web Portal service.

Step 2 - Water Quality Web Portal

Everyone who created a SAW account must then link that account to the Water Quality Web Portal, or WQWebPortal, service.

Now when you log into SAW, you should see "Water Quality Permitting Portal (WQWebPortal)" in the list of services.

Next Step is to create roles for each SAW/WQWebPortal account.

Step 3 - WQWebPortal Roles

As discussed at the top of the page, each WQWebPortal account has a role. The role determines what you can do with the account:

You will need someone to sign the report when you're finished, so at least a signer or a coordinator is required.

Section G19 of the MS4 permit requires that all formal submittals be signed by an executive officer, ranking elected official, or duly authorized representative of the designated person. Whoever is the signer or coordinator for your permit will have to either already have the authority to sign the report, or be delegated the authority to do so.

At this point there are two options. Choose just one of the following:

Step 3A: Signer Option

For the single signer option just one person will receive permission in WQWebPortal to modify, sign, and submit the annual report.

  • Under the My Services tab, click the Water Quality Permitting Portal (WQWebPortal).
  • Click the “Permit Submittals” link on the portal home page.
  • Choose the Facility Signer role for yourself, and click "Continue".
  • Select Create Electronic Signature Account.

Step 3B: Coordinator Option

For the coordinator option, one person (someone with G19 signatory authority, either delegated or not) will sign the annual report, and that person will invite additional people to fill in the annual report. Optionally, the signer will designate an administrator, who will coordinate inviting additional people on their behalf; this option may be best suited to larger organizations.

  • Determine who in your jurisdiction will sign the annual report. This person does not have to have G19 (signature) authority already; the authority can be delegated during this process. Only the designated signer should follow the steps below; there is an future step where additional Preparers will be added to the permit.
  • The signer must log into WQWebPortal, then under the My Services tab, click the Water Quality Permitting Portal (WQWebPortal).
  • Click the “Permit Submittals” link on the portal home page.
  • Choose the Facility Coordinator role for yourself, and click "Continue".
  • Select Create Electronic Signature Account.

Next Step for Part 1 is to create an Electronic Signature Account.

Next Step for Part 2, once all preparers have accounts, is to start filling out the Annual Report.

Step 4 - Electronic Signature Account

All Signers and Coordinators will need to fill in the Electronic Signature Account Form, or ESAF. This form proves that the electronic account belongs to someone with the authority to sign the annual report.

Next Step is to fill in the ESAF.

Step 5 - Electronic Signature Agreement Form

Anyone who signs a submittal, like the Annual Report, through WQWebPortal is required to complete and return to Ecology an Electronic Signature Agreement Form, or ESAF. This "wet ink" process is required by the federal Environmental Protection Agency for electronic reporting.

There are nine (9) boxes in the ESAF. Not all of them are required.

Once you have filled in the ESAF, mail it to Ecology per the last page of the form. Note that the Municipal Stormwater permits are processed at the Ecology regional offices. Follow the mailing instructions "For all other permits"; do not follow the instructions for "Stormwater Permit Facilities - Industrial and Construction Stormwater."

Email confirmation of your ESAF from Ecology can take up to two weeks, but is often complete in less than one week. The email will include instructions and a link to activate your account.

Next Step (optional, depending on Step 3) is to invite additional people to work on the annual report.

Step 6 (Optional) - Invite Preparers or Administrators

If you are following the Coordinator path (more than one person preparing the annual report), after you activate your account you may want to invite additional Preparers or Administrators to work on the annual report.

Step 6A: Signer Option

No action. Go to Step 7 and start filling in the Annual Report.

Step 6B: Coordinator Option

  • Sign into SAW, then follow the link to the WQWebPortal.
  • Click on "Permit Submittals" in the gray box on the right.
  • Along the top, click on the tab titled "Assign Users".
  • In the new page your permit should appear. To the left of the page, click on "Assign Users".
  • A table with five columns should appear. Fill in the First and Last Name, Email Address, and User Role columns (see Step 3 for a description of the roles), then click "Add".
  • The owner of the email account you entered will get an email notifying them that they have been granted access to the WQWebSumittal application. The email will also include details about the specific permit to which they have been given access, and how to log into WQWebPortal.
  • Repeat this process for everyone to whom you wish to grant access.
  • If you invite someone with the Administrator role, that person will be able to invite new people as well. You can invite one administrator, and have the administrator invite any other people necessary for filling in the permit.

The emails received by the new users that you invite will have directions that will take them through Steps 1-3, above.


Step 7 - Complete the Annual Report

Once the SAW and WQWebPortal accounts are set up, anyone with access can start working on the annual report. A YouTube video is available to help with this process.

The Annual Report form allows you to save your progress at any point, log out, log back in, and continue working. You do not have to complete all of the questions at once.

Next Step is to submit the completed annual report.

Step 8 - Submit the Annual Report

After all of the questions have been filled in on the annual report, the final step is to submit the report to Ecology. There is a YouTube walkthrough available for this step as well.

The steps below can be completed by anyone who can edit the annual report.

Step 8A: Signer Option

See It

There are fewer steps to submit for a signer than for a coordinator.

  • Once you've marked the annual report as ready to submit, click on "Save and Done".

Step 8B: Coordinator Option

See It

The coordinator option assumes that an administrator or preparer will complete the validation steps above. WQWebPortal can alert the coordinator or signer by email that the annual report is ready to submit.

  • Once you've marked the annual report as ready to submit, click on "Notify Signer".
  • The new page will give you one or more options of coordinators or signers to notify. Put a check in the box(es) next to the person or people you want to receive an emailed notification, then click Send.

The rest of the submittal signing can only be completed by a coordinator or signer.

Whichever path you followed above should take you back to the main Submittals page for your permit. From here:

There are no further steps; you are done!

For additional assistance with the annual reports, contact your regional permit specialist.

For additional assistance with SAW or WQWebPortal, contact the WQWebPortal Staff.