Presentation on theme: "EPA Region 6 MS4 Conference July 28 – August 1, 2014"— Presentation transcript:
1 Lessons Learned During Texas MS4 General Permit Development, Review and Implementation EPA Region 6 MS4 ConferenceJuly 28 – August 1, 2014Jaya Zyman-Ponebshek, P.E., Assistant DirectorTexas Commission on Environmental QualityWater Quality Division(512)
2 What is an MS4?An MS4 is a publicly-owned or operated stormwater drainage systemDesigned to collect or convey stormwaterIncludes storm drains, pipes, ditches, gutters, etc.I am sure you all know this, but just in case……The curb and gutter system is a part of the MS4, and the storm water flows into the grate and then to storm pipes, which are also part of the MS4.
3 Which MS4s are Regulated? Medium and Large MS4s (Phase I)Individual PermitsBased on jurisdictional boundaries in 1990 Census (1000,000 +)Public entitiesCertain Small MS4s (Phase II)TCEQ General PermitIndividual permit – optionBased on urbanized area (UA) boundaries based on most recent CensusIn Texas all small MS4s are regulated via a general permit. The focus of this presentation is on the lessons learned for both, TCEQ and the regulated community, during the development and implementation of this general permit.50 entities under 25 IpsOver 800 entities under the GP
4 Phase II MS4 General Permit Phase II General Permit TXR040000Small MS4s located in an urbanized area (UA)Renewed December 13, 2013 – 5 year termPrevious permit400 approved authorizations66 approved WaiversNew Permit (due to new UA’s in 2010 Census)800 expected authorizations130 expected waiversUA – an area of high population density as defined and used by the U.S. Census Bureau in the 2010 census (before we used the 2000 census)We just renewed our original permit in Dec 3, 2013 and we have now 7 years under our belt of experience with this permit plus the experience of gathered during this controversial renewal.This renewal was very challenging for multiple reasons:Unlike other GPs, this one required significant changes and it brought many new and inexperienced regulated entities through the 2010 census dataEPA had made it clear that more requirements had to be added given the adaptive management approach to this program.The balancing concerns of stakeholders and the regulatory drivers were extremely challengingIt became evident that we were going to need a slightly different approach on this permit.Additional stakeholder involvementEngaging the help of associations that represent MS4s to disseminate information (TML, NTCOG, etc.)Additional engagement with EPA and through our own executive management at TCEQ and other programs at TCEQ
5 Stormwater Management Program Implementation of SWMPDevelop a scheduleImplemented in yearly intervals over the 5 year permit termMust be fully implemented at the end of the 5 year permit termPossibility for CoalitionsUsually share a boundary or watershedEach MS4 is responsible for own complianceShared responsibilitiesBefore I get into the lessons learned, at a glance, permittees need to develop a SWMP select which BMPs they will use for each MCM and develop an implementation schedule with measurable goals over the next permit term- 5 years. Full implementation in 5 years.MS4s to choose BMPs to meet requirements. A lot of choices to make.
6 Content of SWMP Minimum Control Measures (MCMs) Public Education, Outreach, and InvolvementIllicit Discharge Detection and EliminationConstruction Site Stormwater Runoff ControlPost-Construction Stormwater Management in New Development and RedevelopmentPollution Prevention and Good Housekeeping for Municipal OperationsIndustrial Stormwater SourcesOptional MCM for Construction done by the Permittee (MS4)These are the MCMs
7 MS4 GP Phase II Annual Reports Submit the original report to the TCEQ Stormwater & Pretreatment Team (MC 148)Submit a copy of the report to the appropriate TCEQ regional officeSpecify in the report cover letter that the TCEQ Regional Office has been sent a copy of the reportRetain a copy of the report on siteAnnual Report template available:Due by fiscal year, calendar year or permit yearIn addition they have to submit an annual report documenting progress in meeting the SWMP’s BMPs for each MCM and evaluating their adherence to timelines and measurable goals.
8 Lessons Learned: Who needs to learn? Other StakeholdersRegulated EntitiesRegulatory AgencyWho needs to learn?TCEQMS4sConsultants, associations, others
9 Lessons Learned: During General Permit Development Make draft permits available on state website for easy access to stakeholders.Involve other programs in the state that will impact the MS4s and permit requirementsMake sure requirements are feasible for various types of entitiesAccommodate uniqueness of nontraditional MS4sInvolve stakeholders early on – prepare early versions of draft permit, so stakeholders can comment early on - even before EPA reviews. Iron out as many stakeholder concerns as possible. Revise draft permit based on stakeholder concerns.We normally don’t share permit language with stakeholders, just concepts. For this one however, it was critical to share with stakeholders to reduce their anxiety and get their input, as we are doing for the domestic WWTP design criteria.Coordinate with OCE, OLS, TMDL, Edwards Aquifer, etc.Account for difference in sizes and jurisdictional/ enforcement authorityInvolve stakeholders early
10 Lessons Learned: During General Permit Development continued… Provide flexibility when possibleAccommodate limitations associated with city’s sizesThink outside the box to provide ways to assess program elements other than through quantitative monitoringPresent stakeholders concerns to EPA early on and work together on a path forward that accommodates limitations while complies with minimum rule requirementsProvide tools and resources for the permittees to understand and comply with permit requirementsCommunicate and educate the public and permittees about permit requirements and upcoming changes through meetings, seminars, conferences.Decrease burden on smaller MS4sDeveloped a tier approach for different sizes of MS4sDeveloped a FAQ and technical guidanceAllowed progress to be monitored via qualitative methods (reduces SSOs, increase illicit discharge reporting, etc.)
11 Lessons Learned: During GP Implementation by MS4 Writing the SWMP:Read the permit, know the deadlines, identify requirements vs. areas that are flexibleResearch US census, water quality issues (impaired water bodies, TMDLs, Edwards Aquifer, other site specific issues or challenges unique to your MS4)Collaborate with other departments, city managers, consultants, other agencies, and neighboring MS4sIf discharging to a TMDL watershed, consider the stormwater WLA (whether it is aggregate or disaggregate)If a renewal, consider lessons learned – do not repeat same mistakesSo, the TCEQ is not the only one that did some learning…. MS4s compiled a lot of lessons learned after 6 years of permit implementation and they have shared their knowledge with us. I hope other regulated entities will find these lessons helpful.Based on feedback from MS4s and our own review of their plans.Identify requirements that apply to you by level and water bodyReach out to small business for assistance
12 Lessons Learned: During GP Implementation by MS4 Writing the SWMP Cont…Focus Efforts on your biggest issues, your specific community issues, etc. Don’t try to do it all. Prioritize and evaluate and change priorities every permit term if warranted. Pick lowest hanging fruit and pick issues where you will get the most bang for the buck.Set Realistic Goals- do not overcommit. Commit to minimum requirements and exceed them.Remember things in the permit do not qualify for 309 grant money.Prioritize and combine BMP implementationEvaluate what gives you the biggest environmental benefit for the lowest cost and resourcesIf you committed to street sweeping and your budget wont be there, don’t commit again. Find something else.
13 Lessons Learned: During GP Implementation by MS4 Implementing the SWMPAsk for help across your city staff, state and federal agencies, and neighboring communities. You are not alone!Do not reinvent the wheel. Use materials already prepared by the state or EPA or other neighboring communities. Discuss what has worked for communities similar in size and issues as yours and learn from their mistakes and successes. DO NOT COPY EACH OTHERS PLANSFocus on education and prevention. Be proactive rather than reactive.Steal, borrow documents from other sources (PA, TYCEQ, others states, other MS4s)Do not blindly copy others plans.
14 Lessons Learned: During GP Implementation by MS4 Evaluating progressMonitoring progressReview quarterlyCoordinate with other MS4s or entities to gather published dataPace your planSend reminders (to whom?)Assessing valueMeasure impactsTrack costsEvaluate cost vs. benefitMaking changesMake changes as needed. Don’t retain something is not working or is not benefiting the program for the cost. Each permit term is a great opportunity to start clean and change or remove BMPs to make them more cost-effective and beneficial.As needed make changes during the permit term through NOCCompliance challenges and applying adaptive management as your system progresses from one permit cycle to the nextLessons Learned: During GP Implementation by MS4Evaluating progressMonitoring progressReview quarterlyCoordinate with other MS4s or entities to gather published dataPace your planSend reminders to those in your teamAssessing valueMeasure impactsTrack costsEvaluate cost vs. benefit
15 Lessons Learned: During GP Implementation by MS4 Evaluating progress continued…Making changesMake changes as needed. Don’t retain something is not working or is not benefiting the program for the cost. Each permit term is a great opportunity to start clean and change or remove BMPs to make them more cost-effective and beneficial.As needed make changes during the permit term through NOCConsider compliance challenges and apply adaptive management as your system progresses from one permit cycle to the nextDon't wait till year 5Use the learning from one permit term into the next one
16 Lessons Learned: SWMP Review by TCEQ • Don’t copy each other’s plans. Only retain items that are suitable to your unique needs and funding • When possible, coordinate with neighboring MS4s or other MS4s of similar size to observe what type of activities possibly fit your MS4, and which ones you can adopt and use during the permit term. • Don’t overcommit. • You can’t just eliminate BMPs. Need to replace it with another equivalent BMP. • If you want to go beyond minimum requirements, do so outside the permit and get additional 309 grant money if needed. • If you are a new MS4, don’t plan too much for the first year or two while the plan is being reviewed.
17 Lessons Learned: SWMP Review by TCEQ Make your implementation schedule realistic. Don’t try to pack too much and push it back a year every year making your year 5 impossible at the end of the permit term.Make sure to meet minimum requirements. If a certain MCM does not apply to your MS4, please briefly document why under that section in the SWMP, do not leave that MCM completely out otherwise we will assume it is missing and incomplete.List correct segment names and numbers. Refer to correct CWA 303(d) List and list of approved TMDLS. In Texas, we have the 2012 Texas Integrated Report Index of Water Quality Impairments for a list of segments with both Category 4 and 5 impairments.
18 Lessons Learned: Annual Report Review by TCEQ List program activities that are effective for your MS4 and used continuously each permit year as “Ongoing” instead of “Incomplete”.Summarize activities.Quantify as much as possible to show progress. Give percentages on how close you are to meeting the goals.
19 TCEQ Web Links Stormwater Home Page Small Business and Local Government Assistance
20 TPDES Stormwater Program Contacts Water Quality DivisionJaya Zyman-Ponebshek, Assistant DirectorRebecca L. Villalba, Stormwater & Pretreatment team leaderStormwater permit writersHal BaileyHanne Lehman NielsenDan SiebeneicherLindsay Garza
21 Contact InformationSmall Business and Local Government Assistance (SBLGA)(800)Stormwater NOI/NEC/NOT Status(512)Permitting Information (Technical)(512)