A recent lawsuit that Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli won against the EPA over its stormwater regulations has drawn attention to the challenges inherent in curtailing stormwater runoff. During the General Assembly session, state lawmakers took steps to address the problem. And as Virginia Public Radio’s Tommie McNeil reports, they included legislation to strengthen oversight of nutrient-management and more funding to localities for water quality improvement.
Many localities are required to adopt strategies to limit the total maximum daily load of nutrients that flow into water. It’s an additional burden to already cash-strapped localities with limited personnel. So, Senator Emmett Hangar sponsored a bill to consolidate oversight of water quality planning and laws for stormwater management, erosion, and sediment control programs. The Department of Environmental Quality will be the lead agency.
All of this comes at a hefty cost to the state and localities, and Governor McDonnell says lawmakers saw the urgency in finding the money:
For now, other agencies will share some responsibilities with the DEQ.