Virginia lawmakers moving to approve delay in stormwater regulations

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Virginia's lawmakers are moving ahead with plans to suspend that state's new stormwater regulations until at least 2011, according to the Virgina Association of Counties and the Home Builders Association of Virginia.

The Builders Association's latest legislative update reports that a tentative agreement has been reached among a group of business organizations, local governments, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, the James River Association and the Nature Conservancy on a temporary suspension of new stormwater regulations. The delay would give more time for study.

According to a legislative update from the Virginia Association of Counties, the legislation moving through the Virginia Senate now provides that the technical criteria and “local program criteria and delegation procedures” of the stormwater regulations “shall become effective within 280 days after the establishment by the (EPA) of the Chesapeake Bay-wide (TMDL ) but in any event no later than Dec. 1, 2011.”

The projected date of the EPA's new TMDL plan is not until December 2010, meaning that Virginia's regulations are delayed at least until September 2011.

Maryland's new stormwater regulations are still set to take effect in May, though some lawmakers have suggested they might intervene after hearing complaints from local officials and developers that the rules might undermine Smart Growth and discourage redevelopment of older, existing communities.

What's the difference between Maryland and Virginia when it comes to the Chesapeake Bay and stormwater regulations? Might the local government organizations, business coalitions and environmental advocacy groups like the Chesapeake Bay Foundation reach a similar agreement in the coming weeks?

Read the entire update here from the Home Builders Association of Virginia here:

HBAV stormwater bulletin 02.12.10

Read the update from the Virginia Association of Counties by clicking here.

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