EPA Hosts Webinar with States to Discuss WOTUS
This week, EPA hosted a states-only webinar for the members of ECOS, the Western States Water Council (WSWC), ACWA, and ASWM to begin a dialogue on the rewrite of the WOTUS rule. The purpose of the webinar was to share and discuss the status of EPA’s WOTUS rulemaking efforts and to identify some initial questions to help set up a productive conversation with a small group of state delegations meeting with EPA and the Army Corps in early March.
Regarding the progress of the WOTUS rulemaking efforts, baseline information is currently being collected to inform economic analysis and technical support. EPA also provided a brief discussion of the high-level policy direction the agencies are considering.
Regarding the March meeting, ECOS has worked with its members to identify states willing and interested in sending delegations to the meeting. The session is non-binding and is not designed to reach consensus. ACWA will be participating in the meeting and will present on the results of the WOTUS survey sent to ACWA members around February 20. If you have not filled out the survey or cannot find the link please reach out to either Julia Anastasio or Julian Gonzalez.
EPA Looking for State Feedback on Modernizing Public Hearings Informational Document
EPA is sharing for state feedback the draft informational document, Modernizing Public Hearings for Water Quality Standards Consistent with 40 CFR 25.5. To make public hearings more accessible to the public and less burdensome and less expensive for states, EPA developed this draft informational document describing options to incorporate modern technology into public hearings while being consistent with federal regulations. Please note that this informational document does not impose any new requirements. Feedback is due by April 20, 2018 to EPA. Please reach out to Frances Bothfeld if you would like provide feedback and have not already received the draft document.
EPA Seeking Abstracts/Presenters for 2018 National Nonpoint Source Training Workshop in Colorado
EPA and NEIWPCC are hosting the 2018 National Nonpoint Source Training Workshop at the Antlers Hotel in Colorado Springs, CO from November 5-8, 2018. This workshop is a premier gathering of NPS professionals on the federal, tribal, territorial, and state level. The workshop will provide all attendees with an opportunity to share stories of challenges and successes, attend sessions covering a variety of NPS issues, receive updates on the national and regional level, and network with other NPS program managers and state NPS coordinators throughout the country.
EPA and NEIWPCC are seeking presentations from state, tribal, and EPA program staff, NPS practitioners, and the NPS community. To submit an abstract, please complete the online form here by April 6, 2018. Applicants will be notified of speaker selections in June 2018.
EPA Groundwater Hydrologic Connection Request for Comment
This week, EPA’s Request for Comment for Clean Water Act Coverage of “Discharges of Pollutants” via Direct Hydrologic Connection to Surface Water was published in the Federal Register. EPA is requesting comment on the Agency’s previous statements that pollutant discharges from point sources that reach jurisdictional surface water via groundwater or other subsurface flow may be subject to CWA permitting requirements. Specifically, EPA is seeking comment on whether subjecting such releases to CWA permitting is consistent with the text, structure, and purpose of the CWA, whether these releases would be best be addressed under NPDES or some other federal authority, and whether these releases are adequately addressed through state law. Comments are due May 21, 2018. For a copy of the Federal Register notice, go here.
2018 National Stormwater Roundtable
This week, 100 representatives from 34 states and interstates, along with representatives from EPA Headquarters and Regions, met in Atlanta, Georgia for a 3 ½ day stormwater meeting to discuss a number of challenging topics including writing permits that meet the small MS4 remand rule, meeting TMDL and other water quality based stormwater requirements in permits, defining Maximum Extent Practicable, developing “clear, specific, & measurable” requirements, using electronic permitting systems, increasing the value of oversight inspections, taking enforcement actions and assessing penalties, targeting sites for inspection, erosion and sediment control measures, the MSGP settlement and implication for states, residual designation authority, long term stormwater planning, unpermitted industries and no exposure certification, transportation and stormwater, illicit discharge detection and elimination, efficient and effective oversight of MS4 programs, post construction trends and findings, different approaches to ensuring BMP verification and effectiveness, tools and technology that can help permittees, and factors to consider when permitting unique facilities. For more information on the discussions and presentations from this meeting please contact Sean Rolland.
Monitoring Standards and Assessment Committee Discusses the Variance Policies with the EPA
The Monitoring Standards and Assessment (MSA) Committee held a call with EPA to discuss their variance vision and strategy. ACWA and EPA are creating a workgroup with six or seven states to help provide state input as EPA develops new variance policies. If you are interested in being a part of this workgroup, please contact Frances Bothfeld.
ACWA to Hold an Emerging Contaminants Workshop
ACWA is holding an emerging contaminants workshop in mid-June in Washington, DC (exact dates TBA). The content and goals of this meeting will be state-driven and we hope to begin to address many of the issues surrounding emerging contaminants that the states are facing. If your state is interested in joining the planning committee, please reach out to Frances Bothfeld.
ACWA Scholarships Deadline Extended to March 1
ACWA offers a limited number of scholarships for state travel support to ACWA state members who would not otherwise be able to send a representative to an ACWA meeting. Preference will be given to member organizations that have not been able to send a representative to a Mid-Year or Annual Meeting in several years and members who are seeking assistance to bring another staff member to the meeting who would not otherwise be able to attend. The scholarships will cover meeting registration fees, airfare, local travel, hotel, and associated taxes.
To apply for a scholarship, please contact Sean Rolland, Deputy Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 465-7179.
The deadline for submissions for the 2018 ACWA Mid-Year Meeting is now March 1, 2018.
2018 ACWA Mid-Year Meeting
The 2018 ACWA Mid Year Meeting will be held March 19-20, 2018 in Washington, DC. Reserve your room now! The guaranteed lodging group rate expires today, February 23, 2018. The room rates will go up after today. Reserve here!
2018 National Pretreatment Meeting
The 2018 National Pretreatment Meeting will be held April 17-18, 2018 in Silver Spring, Maryland at the Tommy Douglas Conference Center (“TDCC”), 10000 New Hampshire Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20903. If you plan to attend the meeting, you must register. Please do so by Monday, April 2, 2018. To register for the meeting, go here.
Lodging is available on site at TDCC at rates of $209 for single room and $249 for a double room (plus tax). To reserve a room, please call 240-645-4000 or email email@example.com. Please ask for the Association of Clean Water Administrators block of rooms when making your reservation. If you choose to stay at TDCC as part of the ACWA room block, complimentary breakfast and dinner are included with your room. The deadline for the room block is Monday, April 2, 2018. For more information on TDCC, go here.
For more information on the meeting, please contact Mark Patrick McGuire.
2018 Nutrients Permitting Workshop
Event and hotel registration for the workshop is live! The 2018 Nutrients Permitting Workshop will be held June 5-7, 2018 in Columbus, Ohio at the Riffe Government Center, 77 S. High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215. If you plan to attend the meeting, you must register. Please do so by Friday May 18, 2018. To register for the meeting, go here. The agenda is currently in development, however, the meeting will focus on technology, optimization, and related issues.
Lodging is available for the workshop at the Sheraton Columbus Hotel at Capitol Square. Please ask for the Association of Clean Water Administrators block of rooms when making your reservation.
For more information on the meeting, please contact Mark Patrick McGuire.
2018 National CAFO Roundtable
The 2018 National CAFO Roundtable will be held in Boise, Idaho. The meeting dates are Tuesday, September 25, 2018 to Thursday, September 27, 2018. ACWA is looking for a few volunteers to help us plan the agenda. Likewise, if you have specific topics you would like to present on or you would like to see discussed at the meeting this year, please send us your thoughts and we will share those with the Planning Committee. Finally, ACWA is pleased to be able to help support and organize this meeting because of a cooperative agreement from EPA. As part of that agreement, some state travel funds have been included. Requests for travel support should be submitted to Julian Gonzalez (firstname.lastname@example.org) by Friday, March 9, 2018. For more details on the meeting, please go to ACWA’s 2018 National CAFO Roundtable event page.