Category Archives: Laws&Regs

Water in Virginia State Government News Releases for November 8–November 14, 2014: Va. Comments on EPA Clean Power Plan (carbon emissions regulation for existing power plants); Amtrak to Roanoke; Breaks Interstate Park Master Plan; and Virginia Wildlife eStore Grants

Following are titles and short excerpts from water-related or land-use-related Virginia state government news releases between November 8 and November 14, 2014 (as of 4 p.m. on Nov. 14).  To access the full text of any release, click on the release title or (if that link doesn’t work) click on the Web address beside each agency name to go to that agency’s archive of releases.

GOVERNOR’S OFFICE – https://governor.virginia.gov/newsroom/news-releases/

Virginia Submits Comments on EPA’s Clean Power Plan, 11/14/14. Full news release: “Governor Terry McAuliffe released the following statement today following the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality’s submission of comments in response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan: ‘I agree with the Clean Power Plan’s goal of reducing carbon emissions in order to combat the threat of global warming, and I intend to continue Virginia’s position as a leader on this important issue. There is no question that our Commonwealth can play a leading role in energy conservation and efficiency and expand renewable generation so that we can cut carbon and create jobs along the way. As with any regulatory process of this scope and complexity, Virginia has submitted comments to the EPA with the intent of improving the Clean Power Plan by making it more equitable and better recognizing the progress that states like ours have already made in reducing carbon.  I look forward to working with Virginia’s business community, our environmental partners and the EPA to reduce carbon emissions, fight global warming and open a new chapter of economic growth for our Commonwealth.’” The Commonwealth’s comments on the Clean Power Plan are available online at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Portals/0/DEQ/Air/Planning/vacommentstoepa.pdf (dated 11/14/14; 16 pages).

Construction Begins for Amtrak Service to Roanoke; Northeast Regional service expanding in Virginia, 11/12/14.  Excerpt: “…Amtrak, Norfolk Southern and the City of Roanoke are beginning the first phase of construction for the platform that will serve intercity passenger rail service to the Star City. Amtrak service to the city will be an extension of the successful Northeast Regional train from Lynchburg and is anticipated to start in 2017.  The service will provide a same-seat trip from Roanoke to Lynchburg, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia and cities as far north as Boston. … It has been 34 years since intercity passenger rail service has served Roanoke.”

DEPT. OF CONSERVATION AND RECREATION – http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/pr_relz.shtml#prarch

Breaks Interstate Park master plan to be discussed Dec. 8, 11/13/14.  Excerpt: “A public meeting to discuss the long-range plan for Breaks Interstate Park along the Virginia-Kentucky border will be Dec. 8, 2014, at 6 p.m., in the Breaks Conference Center, 627 Commission Circle, Breaks, Virginia.  Staff with the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) will provide an overview of proposed updates to the park’s master plan. … The 4,800-acre park is off State Route 80 on the Virginia-Kentucky line.  The park is jointly supported by Virginia’s DCR and the Kentucky Tourism, Parks and Heritage Cabinet. … For more information about master plans, visit http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/recreational_planning/masterplans.shtml.

DEPT. OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY – http://www.deq.virginia.gov/ConnectWithDEQ/NewsReleases.aspx
None during this period.

DEPT. OF FORESTRY – http://www.dof.virginia.gov/news/releases/index.htm
None during this period.

DEPT. OF GAME AND INLAND FISHERIES – http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/news/

Virginia Wildlife eStore Grants Awarded, 11/13/14. Excerpt: The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF) and the Wildlife Foundation of Virginia (WFV) have announced awards in the Virginia Wildlife eStore Grant Program. The grants will directly fund youth outdoor activities such as hunting, fishing, and educational events designed to promote recruitment and retention of youth hunters, anglers, and to foster wildlife and outdoor-related activities. … Grants ranging from $500 to $3,400 have been awarded to a dozen entities, ranging from schools to community organizations. The total funding for all the grants combined is $20,000. The funding will provide everything from life jackets and fishing rods, to hunting, shooting, and other outdoor educational opportunities.”

DEPT. OF HEALTHhttp://www.vdh.virginia.gov/news/PressReleases/2014/index.htm
None during this period.

MARINE RESOURCES COMMISSION – http://www.mrc.virginia.gov/whatsnew.shtm
None during this period.

DEPT. OF MINES, MINERALS AND ENERGY – http://www.dmme.virginia.gov/DMME/Newsroom.shtml
None during this period.

Virginia Water-related Government Meetings for Nov. 17-Dec. 1, 2014

For more information, click on underlined meeting dates. Click here for the Commonwealth Calendar listing of all government meetings open to the public, and here for the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall listing of all government meetings of a regulatory nature.

For other, non-governmental, events, please see the Water Central News Grouper post, Quick Guide to Virginia Water-related Events.

REGULAR MEETINGS OF STATEWIDE BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS

11/18/14, 9 a.m.: Board for Waterworks and Wastewater Works Operators and Onsite Sewage System Professionals. At the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, 9960 Mayland Drive in Richmond.

11/18/14, 9 a.m.: Gas and Oil Board. At the Russell County Office Building, 139 Highland Drive in Lebanon.

11/19/14, 10:30 a.m.: Litter Control and Recycling Fund Advisory Board. At the Department of Environmental Quality’s Piedmont Regional Office, 4949-A Cox Road in Glen Allen.

11/20/14, 10 a.m.: Waterworks Advisory Committee. At Sydnor Hydro, 2111 Magnolia Street in Richmond.

11/22/14, 2 p.m.: Cave Board. At Natural Bridge Hotel and Conference Center in Natural Bridge (Rockbridge County).

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MEETINGS OF LEGISLATIVE BODIES
For meetings of legislative committees and commissions during General Assembly sessions (regular and special), see http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?142+oth+MTG; use the drop-down menu on the left to pick the session of interest (current or past).

11/18/14, 10 a.m.: Joint Commission on Technology and Science. At House Room C in the General Assembly Building, 9th & Broad Streets in Richmond. At 1:30 p.m. on the same day, the Commission’s Nanosatellites Advisory Committee meets in House Room D of the General Assembly Building. On 12/1/14 at 11 a.m., the Commission’s Higher Education Equipment Advisory Committee meets in the 3rd Floor East Conference Room of the General Assembly Building.

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MEETINGS ABOUT TOTAL MAXIMUM DAILY LOADS (or TMDLs) for IMPAIRED WATERS

For more information about TMDLs in Virginia, click here for the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality TMDL Web site; click on “Public Notices” in the menu to the left to access upcoming meetings and public-comment periods. A search tool to find approved TMDL reports is available at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Water/WaterQualityInformationTMDLs/TMDL/TMDLDevelopment/ApprovedTMDLReports.aspx.

11/18/14, 6:30 p.m., on the TMDL implementation plan for bacteria and aquatic life (sediment) impairments in Chestnut Creek, in the New River basin in Carroll and Grayson counties and in the City of Galax. At the Galax Recreation Center, 601 South Main Street in Galax.

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MEETINGS ON OTHER SPECIFIC TOPICS
(topics listed alphabetically)

Coastal Flooding
11/24/14, 10 a.m.: Joint Subcommittee to Formulate Recommendations to Address Recurrent Flooding.  In House Room D of the General Assembly Building in Richmond.  The subcommittee was created by the 2014 Virginia General Assembly (HJR 16 and SJR 3) to make recommendations for a comprehensive planning effort to address recurrent flooding in Virginia’s Tidewater and Eastern Shore, particularly as climate change is expected to increase extreme weather events.  Information on the work of this subcommittee is available from the Division of Legislative Services, online at http://dls.virginia.gov/interim_studies_flooding.html; and in a July 23, 2014, news release from the chair of the subcommittee, Del. Chris Stolle (R-83rd) of Virginia Beach, online at http://chrisstolle.com/chris-stolle-elected-as-chair-of-general-assembly-joint-subcommittee-on-recurrent-flooding.

Ports
11/17/14, 5 p.m.: Virginia Port Authority Executive Committee.  At 600 World Trade Center, 101 West Main Street in Norfolk . Also on that day at the same location, the Port Authority’s Growth and Operations Committee will meet at 2:30 p.m., and the Finance and Audit Committee will meet at 3:30 p.m.  The Port Authority’s full Board of Commissioners will meet 11/18/14, 9 a.m., at the same location.

Scenic Rivers
11/19/14, 1 p.m.: Goose Creek Scenic River Advisory Board.  At the Loudoun County Government Center in Leesburg.

Water Quality Regulations and Standards
11/20/14, 10 a.m.: Scientific Advisory Group on the James River Chlorophyll Study.  At Virginia Commonwealth University’s Rice Center for Environmental Life Sciences, 3701 John Tyler Memorial Highway in Charles City.  The advisory group is assisting the Department of Environmental Quality on a comprehensive review of the existing chlorophyll-a criteria and associated modeling for the tidal James.  The pertinent section in the Virginia Administrative Code is VAC 25-260-310 bb.

Waterworks Regulations
11/21/14, 9:30 a.m.: VDH Regulatory Advisory Panel meetings on development of possible amendments to the Waterworks Regulations (Section 12 VAC 5-590 in the Virginia Administrative Code).  At the Virginia Housing Center in Innsbrook, 4224 Cox Road in Glen Allen.

Virginia Water-related Government Meetings for Nov. 10–Nov. 24, 2014

For more information, click on underlined meeting dates. Click here for the Commonwealth Calendar listing of all government meetings open to the public, and here for the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall listing of all government meetings of a regulatory nature.

For other, non-governmental, events, please see the Water Central News Grouper post, Quick Guide to Virginia Water-related Events.

REGULAR MEETINGS OF STATEWIDE BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS

11/18/14, 9 a.m.: Board for Waterworks and Wastewater Works Operators and Onsite Sewage System Professionals.  At the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, 9960 Mayland Drive in Richmond.

11/18/14, 9 a.m.: Gas and Oil Board.  At the Russell County Office Building, 139 Highland Drive in Lebanon.

11/19/14, 10:30 a.m.: Litter Control and Recycling Fund Advisory Board.  At the Department of Environmental Quality’s Piedmont Regional Office, 4949-A Cox Road in Glen Allen.

11/20/14, 10 a.m.: Waterworks Advisory Committee.  At Sydnor Hydro, 2111 Magnolia Street in Richmond.

11/22/14, 2 p.m.: Cave Board.  At Natural Bridge Hotel and Conference Center in Natural Bridge (Rockbridge County).

*          *          *

MEETINGS OF LEGISLATIVE BODIES

For meetings of legislative committees and commissions during General Assembly sessions (regular and special), see http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?142+oth+MTG; use the drop-down menu on the left to pick the session of interest (current or past).

11/10/14General Assembly. At the Capitol in Richmond on this date, several committees in the House of Delegates and Senate will meet, and the full House (at 4 p.m.) and the Senate (at 7 p.m.) each convene as part of the 2014 Special Session.

*          *          *

MEETINGS ABOUT TOTAL MAXIMUM DAILY LOADS (or TMDLs) for IMPAIRED WATERS

For more information about TMDLs in Virginia, click here for the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality TMDL Web site; click on “Public Notices” in the menu to the left to access upcoming meetings and public-comment periods. A search tool to find approved TMDL reports is available at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Water/WaterQualityInformationTMDLs/TMDL/TMDLDevelopment/ApprovedTMDLReports.aspx.

11/18/14, 6:30 p.m., on the TMDL implementation plan for bacteria and aquatic life (sediment) impairments in Chestnut Creek, in the New River basin in Carroll and Grayson counties and in the City of Galax. At the Galax Recreation Center, 601 South Main Street in Galax.

*          *          *

MEETINGS ON OTHER SPECIFIC TOPICS
(topics listed alphabetically)

Air-Water Connections
11/12/14, 6:30 p.m.: Air Pollution Control Board/Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) public hearing on a request for a permit amendment by Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company modify its Danville facility.  At Danville Community College/Regional Center for Advanced Technology and Training, 121 Slayton Avenue in Danville.  The permit addresses several air pollutants that can eventually affect water resources, including sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particulates.

Fort Monroe
11/13/14, 1 p.m.: Fort Monroe Authority Board of Trustees’ Finance Committee; at 151 Bernard Road in Fort Monroe.  In 2011, the Virginia General Assembly (Senate Bill 1400) established the Fort Monroe Authority to manage the historic areas of Fort Monroe and Old Point Comfort—at the confluence of Hampton Roads with the Chesapeake Bay—after the federal government closed its military facilities there. Fort Monroe had been a U.S. military base since 1836.  In 2011, the area was designated as Fort Monroe National Monument (http://www.nps.gov/fomr/index.htm). More information about Fort Monroe and the Authority is available online at http://www.fmauthority.com/.

Infrastructure Construction Funding
11/12/14, 2 p.m.: Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) public meeting on the draft priority list for grants for Fiscal Year 2015 from Virginia Clean Water Revolving Loan Fund.  At the DEQ office, 629 East Main Street in Richmond.  The public review and comment period will end immediately following the public meeting.  The draft list of loan recipients and projects is available from the DEQ online at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Water/CleanWaterFinancingAssistance/FY2015AnnualSolicitation.aspx.  More information about the Clean Water Revolving Loan Fund is available online at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Water/CleanWaterFinancingAssistance.aspx.

Ports
11/17/14, 5 p.m.: Virginia Port Authority Executive Committee.  At 600 World Trade Center, 101 West Main Street in Norfolk.  Also on that day at the same location, the Port Authority’s Growth and Operations Committee will meet at 2:30 p.m., and the Finance and Audit Committee will meet at 3:30 p.m.  The Port Authority’s full Board of Commissioners will meet 11/18/14, 9 a.m., at the same location.

State Parks
11/13/14, 7 p.m.: Department of Conservation and Recreation update on the Natural Tunnel State Park Master Plan.  At Natural Tunnel State Park/Cove Ridge Center, 1420 Natural Tunnel Parkway in Duffield (Scott County).

Water Quality Regulations and Standards
11/20/14, 10 a.m.: Scientific Advisory Group on the James River Chlorophyll Study.  At Virginia Commonwealth University’s Rice Center for Environmental Life Sciences, 3701 John Tyler Memorial Highway in Charles City.  The advisory group is assisting the Department of Environmental Quality on a comprehensive review of the existing chlorophyll-a criteria and associated modeling for the tidal James.  The pertinent section in the Virginia Administrative Code is VAC 25-260-310 bb.

Waterworks Regulations
11/10/14, 10 a.m., and 11/21/14, 9:30 a.m.: VDH Regulatory Advisory Panel meetings on development of possible amendments to the Waterworks Regulations (Section 12 VAC 5-590 in the Virginia Administrative Code).  The 11/10/14 meeting is at the VDH Office of Drinking Water, Room 169, 109 Governor Street in Richmond, and is also available online; this meeting is of work group 4, which is considering groundwater capacity and well testing.  The 11/21/14 meeting is at the Virginia Housing Center in Innsbrook, 4224 Cox Road in Glen Allen; this meeting is of the full advisory panel.

River Basin Coordination Case Studies Examined in September 2014 Issue of Water Resources Impact, from the American Water Resources Association

The September 2014 issue of Water Resources Impact, published by the American Water Resources Association (AWRA, headquartered in Middleburg, Va.), presents case studies of regional coordination and management of water supply, water quality, flood management, watershed management, and other issues in six major river basins: the Delaware, Ohio, Tennessee, Missouri, Colorado, and Columbia.  (Virginia in part of the basins of the Ohio and Tennessee rivers.)  The publication is available online at http://www.awra.org/impact/; or contact AWRA at P.O. Box 1626, Middleburg, VA 20118-8390; (540) 687-8390; info@awra.org.

River basin coordination cover

Cover of the September 2014 issue of Water Resources Impact, American Water Resources Association; accessed online at http://www.awra.org/impact/, 10/24/14.

Large Industrial Sludge Land-application Permit in Several Virginia Counties is Subject of October 23, 2014, Public Hearing; SWCB Consideration Expected in December 2014

On October 23, 2014, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the State Water Control Board held a public hearing on the permit application by Synagro, LLC (headquartered in Baltimore, Md.; online at http://www.synagro.com) to land-apply residual solid materials from industrial wastewater treatment to about 16,042 acres of farmland in Goochland, King & Queen, King William, New Kent, Prince George, and Surry counties.  The material would come from area hog-processing, poultry-processing, and paper-processing plants.

Information on the October 23 public hearing, which was held at the DEQ’s Piedmont Regional Office, 4949-A Cox Road in Glen Allen, is available from the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall, online at http://townhall.virginia.gov/L/ViewMeeting.cfm?MeetingID=21970.

The permit application has been controversial in the affected counties and has undergone an extended public-comment process.  The current comment period runs 9/17/14 to 11/7/14 and follows two previous comment periods (12/23/13 to 1/31/14; and 3/5/14 to 4/25/14) and two previous public hearings (4/9/14 and 4/10/14).  The State Water Control Board is tentatively scheduled to consider the application during its December 2014 quarterly meeting.

Below are hyperlinked headlines to several news items on this proposal, starting in August 2014.

Residents raise concern over proposed sludge permit [at Va. DEQ public hearing on permit, held in Glen Allen on 10/23/14], Tidewater Review, 10/28/14.

Public hearing on sludge permit to be held Thursday [Oct. 23, 2014, in Glen Allen, Va.], Tidewater Review, 10/22/14.

Farmers in Prince George are pro-Synagro, Petersburg Progress-Index, 10/14/14.

Delegate [Christopher K. Peace, R-97] addresses DEQ regarding sludge application, The Mechanicsville Local, 9/17/14.

Hanover Board of Supervisors sends letter opposing sludge
, Richmond Times-Dispatch, 9/16/14.

The Virginia DEQ failed to provide notification to local counties about industrial sludge, Richmond Times-Dispatch, 9/9/14.

Industrial sludge application pulled [in Hanover County], Richmond Times-Dispatch, 8/27/14.

Sludge: Risk Or Resource?, Water Online, 8/27/14.

New Kent supervisors vote to send letter opposing DEQ permit for Synagro, New Kent-Charles City Chronicle, 8/12/14.

Water in Virginia State Government News Releases for Sep. 4-Sep. 12, 2014: State Parks Funding, Hurricane Preparedness, Bear Creek State Park, Agroforestry, Tree Seedling Sales, James River Shellfishing Closure, Summer Flounder, Shellfishing Training

Following are titles and short excerpts from water-related Virginia state government news releases between September 4 and September 12, 2014.  To access the full text of any release, click on the respective agency name to go to that agency’s archive of releases.

GOVERNOR’S OFFICE
Governor McAuliffe Celebrates New Initiative to Support State Parks,” 9/9/14.  Excerpt: “Governor Terry McAuliffe and First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe hosted a strategic planning session today in Richmond for the Partnership for Parks campaign founded by the Virginia Association for Parks and the Garden Club of Virginia.  The Partnership for Parks was formed to raise private funding to design, build, and install new interpretive exhibits in more than a dozen state park visitor centers.  The partners recognize that the goal of exhibits is to educate, entertain and inspire park visitors. More than 30 people from across the Commonwealth came to Richmond to chart a strategic plan for completing this effort by the year 2020.  More than $5 million will be needed for the campaign.”

Governor McAuliffe Announces Improvements to Commonwealth Hurricane Preparedness; Hurricane evacuation timeline adjusted to allow officials more time to make decisions and carry out emergency plans,” 9/4/14.  Excerpt: “Governor Terry McAuliffe released a report today outlining improvements to Virginia’s hurricane preparedness plan, including an adjustment to the evacuation decision-making timeline. The hurricane in-season review, led by the Virginia Department of Emergency Management and the Virginia Department of Transportation, focused on five critical areas: coordination and information-sharing between state and local emergency officials, evacuation of impacted areas, sheltering evacuees, assistance to those with access and functional needs or without transportation, and communicating with the public.”

DEPT. OF CONSERVATION AND RECREATION
Bear Creek Lake State Park master plan to be discussed Sept. 24,” Excerpt: Public meeting 9/24/14, 6 p.m., at the park, 22 Bear Creek Lake Road in Cumberland.

DEPT. OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
None this week.

DEPT. OF FORESTRY
Fields, pastures, creek sides…. AND TREES,” 9/10/14.  Excerpt: “Come find out about agroforestry in a day-long workshop focused on two particular practices, riparian buffers and silvopastures. …This workshop will be held on November 8th from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm at Lord Fairfax Community College’s Fauquier Campus.”

Tree Seedling Sales for the 2014-15 Season,” 9/11/14.  Excerpt: “Officials with the Virginia Department of Forestry (VDOF) announced that demand for its loblolly pine seedlings is very high this season and the agency anticipates that some or all families will sell out early. Customers interested in VDOF’s specialty seedlings are advised to setup an account and plan to purchase when the online store opens October 13 at 10:00 a.m.”

DEPT. OF GAME AND INLAND FISHERIES
None this week.

DEPT. OF HEALTH
Virginia Department of Health Closes a Portion of the James River to Shellfish Harvesting,” 9/9/14.  Excerpt: “The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) announced [on September 9, 2014] a portion of the James River will be closed to shellfish harvesting due to flooding and contamination from sewage spills. The emergency closure is effective September 9 – 30, 2014, and is scheduled to reopen effective October 1, 2014. The Division of Shellfish Sanitation will monitor the shellfish during this period to determine if the area can be reopened sooner.”

DEPT. OF MINES, MINERALS AND ENERGY
None this week.

MARINE RESOURCES COMMISSION
Summer Flounder Amendment Scoping Hearings,” 9/5/14.  Excerpt: “The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission have scheduled a series of scoping hearings to gather public input on the range of issues and information to be considered in the Comprehensive Summer Flounder Amendment.” The Virginia hearing will be held on Tuesday, 10/14/14, 6 p.m., at the VMRC main office, 2600 Washington Avenue in Newport News.

New Shellfish training dates announced,” 9/4/14.  Excerpt: “The National Shellfish Sanitation Program guidelines now require training and education programs for all shellfish harvesters and certified dealers. Completion of the training is a pre-requisite for licensing.”

Geographic Information Systems’ Value to Virginia Localities Described in July 28, 2014, Richmond Times-Dispatch Article; Plus “Geography on the Web” from Va. Tech Department of Geography

GIS a crucial tool for localities,” published in the Richmond Times-Dispatch on July 28, 2014, describes various uses by Virginia’s local governments of computerized mapping and geographic data management technology, known as geographic information systems or GIS.  The article is available online at this link: http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/local/henrico/gis-a-crucial-tool-for-localities/article_35a68546-8d45-5ffd-babc-4cc643bd1dcf.html; or contact the newspaper at 300 East Franklin Street, Richmond, VA 23219; phone (804) 649-6000; e-mail: content@timesdispatch.com.

For a list of many sources of information about geography and GIS, see “Geography on the Web,” Virginia Tech Geography Department, online at http://geography.vt.edu/geog_on_web/geogonweb.htm.