New Stormwater Local Laws
The following local laws which add new chapters to the Code of the Village of Solvay were adopted by the Board of Trustees at the November 27, 2007:
New Stormwater Regulations Mean Some Changes for the Village and our Residents
The 1987 Clean Water Act (CWA) contained provisions aimed at launching a national effort to regulate the discharges of pollutants into waterways during runoff events. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published Phase I regulations in 1990 which focused on large and medium-sized municipalities and stormwater runoff from certain specified types of activities. As a result, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), given permitting authority by the EPA, issued two general permits in 1993. The first dealt with industrial site runoff and the second with stormwater runoff from construction activities disturbing an area of five acres or more.
EPA’s Phase II stormwater regulations were promulgated in 1999, significantly expanding the scope of activities subject to permitting. March 10, 2003 was set as the date which new and ongoing Phase II construction activities would need to obtain a permit. The threshold for construction activities was reduced to one acre or more of disturbed area. More of interest to the Village, however, was the fact that the Phase II regulations also identified publicly owned and/or operated separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) which were located within areas designated as urbanized as defined by the United States Census as also needing a permit. The Village of Solvay was identified as an MS4.
What does this mean? Under the MS4 permit, by January 2008, the Village must adopt a Stormwater Management Program which addresses six minimum measures:
1. Public Education & Outreach on Stormwater Impacts – Includes developing an ongoing program to educate citizens about the impacts of stormwater discharges on local water resources. Includes printed material such as brochures and press releases as well as electronic access to stormwater information via the Internet.
2. Public Involvement & Participation – Includes identifying key stakeholders and individuals interested in providing input in support of meeting MS4 requirements and goals. Residents also have full access to the Village’s Stormwater Management Plan as well as the opportunity to attend the annual public meeting and have their comments incorporated into the annual report.
3. Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination – Includes a wide variety of administrative (codes, ordinances, local laws, etc.) and maintenance (dye testing, system inspections, etc.) activities to address harmful discharges to the stormwater system.
4. Construction Site Stormwater Runoff Control – Includes a wide variety of administrative activities from site plan review to code enforcement inspections at construction sites.
5. Post-Construction Stormwater Management – Includes regulating post-construction runoff through some form of regulatory mechanism, identifying appropriate management practices which should be implemented as permanent stormwater facilities and developing an inspection and maintenance program.
6. Pollution Prevention & Good Housekeeping – Includes preventing pollutant discharges to the stormwater system from municipal operations, adopting recognized management practices and conducting employee pollution prevention training.
Brochures and Fact Sheets
Websites of Interest
EPA Stormwater Outreach Materials
A wide variety of educational materials on stormwater pollution & prevention.