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At Long Last, Virginia’s Stormwater Regulations are Approved

By: Ann Neil Cosby. This was posted Friday, May 27th, 2011

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On Tuesday, May 24, 2011, the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board unanimously approved the state’s final Stormwater Regulations. The Regulations will fundamentally alter the way stormwater from construction activities is regulated in Virginia. The changes include new technical criteria limiting the quality and quantity of discharges for new development and for redevelopment. The changes will also result in local stormwater management programs being established in all localities and being administered either by the locality or by DCR.

Approval of the Regulations brings to end a process that began over seven years ago. In that time, the Regulations were revised, approved, suspended, revised again, and are now approved in final form. We’ve been following the regulatory process in prior posts. The final approved regulations are a comproromise that most stakeholders appear to be able to accept, but some may still call inadequate or onerous.

At the adoption, David Dowling, policy and planning director for the state Department of Conservation and Recreation said the rules will “benefit water quality throughout the state.”

The action on Wednesday sets the clock for the McDonnell administration to review the regulations for 60 days before they are submitted for publication in the Register and take effect in October for implementation in 2014.

What steps do you expect to take as the implementation of these new regulations approaches? Let’s talk!

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  • Regulations are one thing. Enforcement is another, especially for the extensive railroad contruction planned for Virginia.

    Railroads and utilities are exempt from local oversight. Norfolk Southern did a mile of land disturbance on local project and did not submit proper site specific ESC plans for excessive land and did not comply with their own general plan. This was in riparian area with steep grades. When DCR was notified, they did not sanction the railroad.

    Posted by: Anne Hewitt | June 24th, 2011 at 2:25 pm

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