Wednesday, June 24, 2009

State of Vermont Moves to Enforce Clean Water Act; 400 Properties in Chittenden County Must Obtain Stormwater Permits in 180 Days

Late last week, the State of Vermont sent notice to more than 400 property owners in Chittenden County informing them that they will be required to obtain stormwater permits within the next 180 days.

The notice stems from a decision issued by the Vermont Environmental Court in August of 2008. The Court ordered the Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) to begin enforcing provisions of the federal Clean Water Act that require permits for certain properties that discharge stormwater into waters that do not meet state water quality standards (so-called "impaired waters").

The notices went to property owners in five different watersheds in Chittenden County, each of which contain streams that are classified by the state as "impaired waters," primarily due to stormwater discharges.

The initial "residual designation" notice for each watershed is available on ANR's website:
Other information related to the agency's residual designation - including a list of each property required to obtain permits, and maps of the identified watersheds - is also available on the agency's website.

ANR will be promulgating a "general permit" to cover this category of dischargers, and the identified property owners will be required to obtain permits from the state within 180 days. More information on the specifics of the permitting program will be available once the general permit is published.

The Burlington Free Press also has a report on the new stormwater permitting program in today's paper.