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“Together We’re Better”

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1 “Together We’re Better”
Northwest Arkansas' Regional Storm Water Program “Together We’re Better” Katie Teague County Extension Agent – Agriculture/Water Quality

2 Historically, CES’ water quality educational emphases in Northwest Arkansas focused on agricultural BMPs

3 include urban nonpoint
In 1998, water quality programs expanded to include urban nonpoint pollution prevention

4 Message: “What you do in and around your home and in conjunction with
your business as an individual can have a regional impact on community water resources”

5 The Clean Water Act , 1977 The cornerstone of surface water quality protection in the United States … … gave EPA the authority to implement pollution control programs and ... established the basic structure for regulating discharges of pollutants into the waters of the United States.

6 Phase I Storm Water Regulations
In 1990, EPA’s Storm Water Phase I program addressed storm water runoff from: “Medium” and “ large” municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) generally serving a population of 100,000 or more Construction activity disturbing 5 acres of land or greater Ten categories of industrial activity

7 Phase II Storm Water Regulations
In 2003, EPA’s Storm Water Phase II program expanded the Phase I program by addressing storm water runoff from: “Small” municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) generally serving a population of 10,000 or more or “urbanized areas” Construction activity disturbing >1 acre of land

8 Big changes, BIG challenges…
In 1990, new EPA regulations recognized urban runoff as point source pollution In 2003, 54 jurisdictions in Arkansas were required to have a plan and a permit for storm water management

9 12 Cities, 2 Counties and University of Arkansas
In Northwest Arkansas… 12 Cities, 2 Counties and University of Arkansas all meet EPA’s criteria as “small” MS4s and had to address the six minimum control measures outlined in the Phase II Storm Water regulations

10 EPA minimum control measures for Phase II Stormwater regulations:
Public Education/ Public Outreach Public Involvement/ Public Participation Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination Construction Site Runoff Control Post-Construction Runoff Control Pollution Prevention/ Good Housekeeping

11 NWA Storm Water Focus Team
Initiated in 2002 Composed of representatives from MS4s, CES and NWA Regional Planning Commission Purpose: To better understand and prepare for Phase II compliance by March 2003 Extension served as educational resource for presentations, fact sheets and coordination of a “Storm Water Forum” for local governments officials

12 Storm Water Forum January 2003
Phase II regulations, legal implications, funding options 161 Participants Mayors City Aldermen Planning Commissioners County Judges County JPs

13 EPA minimum control measures for Phase II Stormwater regulations:
Public Education/ Public Outreach Public Involvement/ Public Participation Construction Site Runoff Control Post-Construction Runoff Control Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination Pollution Prevention/ Good Housekeeping

14 NWA Urban Storm Water Program
Concept evolved from storm water focus team 15 Jurisdictions paying into NWARPC to support CES program based on percent of urbanized area population “CES fits the bill perfectly as far as public education” Jeff Hawkins, NWA Regional Planning Commission

15 Shared Regional Support
MS4 Jurisdiction % Urbanized Area Population Bentonville 10.77 Bethel Heights 0.38 Elkins 0.42 Elm Springs 0.02 Farmington 1.89 Fayetteville/U of A 32.52 Greenland 0.32 Johnson 1.11 Little Flock 1.01 Lowell 2.68 Rogers 20.08 Springdale 25.72 Benton County 1.09 Washington County 1.27 172,630 individuals

16 Shared Regional Support
MS4 Jurisdiction % Urbanized Area Population Program Cost Bentonville 10.77 $61,679 Bethel Heights 0.38 2,156 Elkins 0.42 2,395 Elm Springs 0.02 113 Farmington 1.89 10.849 Fayetteville/U of A 32.52 186,173 Greenland 0.32 1,831 Johnson 1.11 6,328 Little Flock 1.01 5,781 Lowell 2.68 15,359 Rogers 20.08 119,111 Springdale 25.72 147,249 Benton County 1.09 6,265 Washington County 1.27 7,263 172,630 individuals $572,552

17 4½-Year Workplan Input and Planning Educational Material Development
Public Outreach Public Education Public Participation Municipal Employee Training Evaluation and Reporting

18 Input and Planning Establish steering committees
(representation based on urban population) Committee members identify and prioritize educational needs Provide input to guide public awareness campaigns and educational programs Committees evaluate program impact and plan further efforts

19 Committee Kickoff – July 2004
Northern Committee Program: Background on Phase II Storm water dynamics Regional program Role of CES Committee Discussions: NWA storm water issues Educational priorities Target audiences Southern Committee

20 Outcomes When re-convened, committee priorities were nearly identical
Emphases: construction runoff and fertilization Audiences: Youth, construction community, local officials, general public Meet twice a year to evaluate progress and plan next steps

21 Educational Materials Development
Printed materials PSAs Displays Website Regional Urban Home*A*Syst Industry-specific materials

22 EPA Outreach Materials

23 Your “Watershed Footprint” affects regional water quality
In towns, water running off of parks, lawns, driveways, streets, and parking lots flows untreated through ditches or storm drains directly to the nearest creek. steps to protect Runoff Pathways It is important to recognize that when water runs off your property, it carries soil, nutrients, chemicals, bacteria and oil and grease to regional water resources like Beaver Lake. What is a watershed? steps for proper Lawn and Garden Care A watershed is an area of land which all drains to one point - usually a stream or lake. A bathtub is a good analogy, where all of the water from a shower head runs down the sides and bottom, ultimately flowing into the drain. Leave grass clippings on the lawn to recycle nutrients and reduce phosphorus runoff into water resources Test your soil to determine nutrient application needs Read the label, measure the area to be treated and apply nutrients and chemicals precisely Scout your property regularly to detect and prevent pest problems as early as possible Sweep any fertilizer/pesticides spilled on driveways, sidewalks or streets back onto your lawn Irrigate (0.25 to 0.5 inch) after applying fertilizer to get the nutrients into the soil where it can be used by the plants Mulch or compost fall leaves Beaver Lake and Illinois River Watersheds The Upper White River Watershed includes all of Benton County and parts of Benton, Boone, Madison, Newton and Washington Counties. It was ranked as the #1 priority in the state through “Arkansas’ Unified Watershed Assessment, 1998" as the watershed in most need of restoration practices as it includes: - One state extraordinary water resource - One imperiled aquatic species - Drinking water supply for more than 300,000 people - One state impaired water body - Numerous state waters of concern - Interstate waters of concern steps for proper Vehicle Maintenance What does that mean for Benton County? steps to manage Hazardous Household Products When vehicles are washed on paved driveways and parking lots, the soap and grime drains directly into storm drains and waterways. Instead, wash your car or truck on the lawn or take it to a commercial carwash where the dirty wash water is sent to a wastewater plant for treatment. Leaking vehicles deposit automotive fluids on driveways, parking lots and roads where they are easily washed into waterways with rainwater. Because the waterways in the county flow to Beaver Lake residents should: - Understand drainage pathways - Recognize potential pollution impacts - Adopt pollution prevention actions - Promote public awareness/education - Think about reducing packaging and product waste before buying a product (pre-cycling) - Read labels to look for options that are not listed as toxic, caustic, flammable, poisonous, etc. - Read and follow label directions precisely! - Share leftovers (properly labeled) with friends and neighbors Some products like antifreeze, used motor oil, paint, and tires can be recycled. Residents of Madison County can bring household quantities of hazardous wastes including paint, batteries, solvents, cleaners, and pesticides to: Haz-M.E.R.T., Inc Laurel Circle in Rogers (479) open 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. (M-F), 8 a.m. - noon (Saturday) Siloam Springs Recycling Center & Transfer Station (479) Open 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. (M-F), 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. (Saturday) Prevention tips include: - Using carpet strips to catch drips - Performing routine vehicle maintenance to prevent and identify potential leaks - Cleaning up outdoor spills of automotive fluids such as gasoline, oil, and antifreeze - Never dumping used oil, antifreeze, or gasoline down a storm drain, in a ditch, or onto the ground For more steps on protecting community water resources visit:

24 In Process… Local watersheds fact sheet
Fertilizer fact sheet to include with soil test results Regional Urban Home*A*Syst homesite evaluation guide List of stormwater resources and contacts

25 Public Outreach Mass media promotion Displays Creek signs
Utility bill inserts Nutrient management information with soil test results “Green Business” program

26 Newspaper Promo Northwest Arkansas Times Morning News
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Benton Co. Daily Observer Rogers Hometown News

27 Public Education School programs Creekside classrooms
Civic presentations Lawn and garden programs Nutrient Applicator Trainings

28 Hands-On Youth Education
Project WET Outdoor classrooms EnviroScape runoff model Fishing simulator

29 ADEQ Inspection “Sweep”
120+ construction sites inspected in Benton & Washington Counties in July 2004 74 Sites without permit, inadequate sediment controls or sediment leaving site $245,000 in proposed fines, one company fined $17,500 for 5 sites

30 “NWA Construction Site Sediment and Erosion Control” workshop
November 2004 202 developers, contractors, engineers and planners participated Interest in what is expected and how they can meet the requirements

31 52 participants interested
Evaluation 101 respondents 72% rated relevance of topics to their occupation as excellent or superior 47% gained new information 53% said workshop helped reinforce their understanding of storm water dynamics and compliance with Phase II regulations 52 participants interested in a follow-up workshop focusing on Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan development and BMP design

32 Public Participation Master Gardener program Storm drain stenciling
Creek clean-ups Stream Teams

33 Master Gardener Volunteers

34 Rain Gardens Gardening with Water Quality in Mind
Rain Garden: A landscaped area planted with wild flowers and other native vegetation to soak up rain water from the house roof, a sidewalk or driveway. When it rains, the garden fills with a few inches of water that slowly filters into the ground instead of running off into a storm drain. Placement and Sizing Construction Planting and Maintenance If the lawn is almost flat, you will dig the rain garden to the same depth throughout the rain garden, using the the soil to build a berm. Where should a rain garden be built? Strategically placed near to hard surfaces such as sidewalks and drives or at gutter downspout outlets At least 10 feet from the house foundation In full or partial sun In a fairly flat part of the yard (digging is easier!) Not directly under a tree Not directly over a septic system Not where water already ponds (infiltration is slow!) The size of the garden depends on: Lawn slope for depth The soil type at the site The size area that will drain to the rain garden Hardy NWA native species that thrive in our ecosystems without chemical fertilizers and pesticides are the best choices. Many rain gardens feature shrubs as well as wild flowers and grasses. Weeding will be needed the first couple of years. By the third year, the native plants will begin to mature and out-compete the weeds. After each growing season, the stems and seedheads can be left for winter interest, wildlife cover and bird food. Once spring arrives, and new growth is 4-6” tall, cut all tattered plants back. If the lawn is steeper, the high end will need to be dug out much more than the upper end and can be used to backfill the lower end to make it level. After shaping the berm into a smooth ridge about a foot across, stomp on it so it is well-compacted. The berm should have very gently sloping sides; this helps to integrate the rain garden with the surrounding lawn and makes it less likely to erode. Lawn slope is < 4%, build a 3 to 5-inch deep garden Lawn slope is 8-12%, build an 8-inch deep garden Lawn slope is 5 - 7%, build a 6 to 7-inch deep garden Rain gardens work for us in many ways… Increasing the amount of water that filters into the ground, which recharges groundwater supplies Helping protect communities from flooding and drainage problems Helping protect streams and lakes from pollutants carried by urban storm water – lawn fertilizers and pesticides, oil and other automotive fluids, and other harmful substances washing off roofs and paved areas Enhancing the beauty of yards and neighborhoods Providing valuable habitat for birds, butterflies and beneficial insects While rain gardens help protect water quality, they should also be an attractive feature of your yard and neighborhood! Integrate rain gardens into existing and future landscaping!

35 Municipal Employee Training
Nutrient management Integrated pest management Hazardous product management Vehicle maintenance Construction site inspections

36 Shared Regional Support = Cost-Effective!!!
Jurisdiction % Urbanized Pop. Program Cost (1st 6 months) Total Bentonville 10.77 $6,838 $61,679 Bethel Heights 0.38 239 2,156 Elkins 0.42 266 2,395 Elm Springs 0.02 13 113 Farmington 1.89 1,203 10.849 Fayetteville/U of A 32.52 20,640 186,173 Greenland 0.32 203 1,831 Johnson 1.11 702 6,328 Little Flock 1.01 641 5,781 Lowell 2.68 1,703 15,359 Rogers 20.08 13,205 119,111 Springdale 25.72 16,325 147,249 Benton County 1.09 695 6,265 Washington County 1.27 805 7,263 Totals 172,630 individuals $63,475 $572,552 Average cost per capita/year = 74¢

37 But the partnerships include more than just the participating MS4s …
NWA Regional Planning Commission Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality Arkansas Natural Resources Commission Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Beaver Water District University of Arkansas Audubon Arkansas Lake Fayetteville Environmental Study Center Local watershed partnerships and the list goes on and on!

38 By working together, the Benton and Washington County MS4s are:
Educating each other about storm water Reducing the financial cost for implementing Phase II minimum control measures Increasing the effectiveness of public education and participation programs Protecting water quality on a regional basis

39 At the same time, UACES is:
Funding County Agent, secretary and para-professional positions through new city and County support Linking traditional Extension programs such as 4-H, Master Gardener and EHC with water quality education programs Increasing and enhancing urban partnerships with municipalities, schools, civic organizations, businesses and the construction community Expanding its clientele and reputation and in urban communities

40 CES’ MS4-funded “Urban Storm Water Education Program” Model
Program replicated in SE Arkansas among the cities of Pine Bluff and White Hall, UA Pine Bluff and Jefferson County Another possibly developing among the cities of Benton and Bryant and Saline County

41 Questions?

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