Pennsylvania

See the Bay Journal article PA launches pilot planning effort for pollution plan as 2025 deadline nears

Contact: Veronica Kasi, PA Department of Environmental Protection, vbkasi@pa.gov.

Maryland

Local engagement has been a major part of the planning process of Maryland’s Phase III watershed implementation plan (WIP) since the inaugural public meeting last year, said Dinorah Dalmasy, manager of Integrated Water Planning Program for the Maryland Department of the Environment.

Maryland is waiting for the final planning targets to divide them into a county scale. “Those local targets are the ‘big question’ right now to those entities that have responsibility and the means to do something to reduce pollution,” she said.

The state is working with counties to determine the level of reductions they can get from each sector, such as wastewater treatment, septic systems, stormwater and agriculture.

“Those 23 countywide plans will be incorporated in our Phase III WIP,” she said.

The department and other state environmental agencies, Maryland Department of Agriculture, Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Planning Management and Budget have representatives on planning workgroups and were represented in all of the five public planning meetings that already took place. All meetings are open to the public, Dalmasy said, and invitations have been sent to elected officials and some citizen groups.

During summer 2018, state agencies will be working on technical assistance tools and other information to be distributed to counties to help guide their plans.

Contact: Kathy Stecker, MD Department of the Environment, at kathy.stecker@maryland.gov.

Virginia

Virginia’s outreach methods throughout 2017 helped to fill the six meetings with 250 attendees.

“We conveyed the process and the general expectations of local governments and told some success stories of local TMDLs (total maximum daily loads),” said Joan Salvati, local government assistance manager for the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality.

Salvati said that the state is working with soil and water districts on agriculture; transportation planning districts on stormwater; and local health districts, which oversee septic systems. Virginia’s Phase III WIP Local Planning Group will begin working with each sector and area nonprofit groups to identify local planning targets after receiving the final targets from the Bay Program.

“All sectors have provided input and information on gaps and opportunities, and are submitting information to us,” Salvati said. The department, along with other state environmental agencies, will be developing fact sheets and informational resources over the summer. Planning district commissions and regional planning entities will be coordinating much of the technical assistance and outreach in the fall.

Contact: Joan Salvati, VA Department of Environmental Quality, joan.salvati@deq.viriginia.gov

West Virginia

West Virginia has shared information with local governments, agriculture and watershed groups at meetings in May and June to gather input as part of the Phase III WIP process. Local governments in the Eastern Panhandle may contact Matthew Pennington at the Regional Planning and Development Council to offer comments or become involved. Local government representatives in the Potomac Valley counties of West Virginia (Grant, Hampshire, Hardy, Mineral, and Pendleton) should contact Alana Hartman at the state Department of Environmental Protection to provide comments or request an update at a regularly scheduled county commission, city council or similar meetings. Public meetings are being planned for July, and will be announced on the Tributary Team’s website,
wvchesapeakebay.us.

“We’re working with local government staff and elected officials to identify strategies and projects that are already in their local plans and have water quality or are part of flood reduction projects,” Pennington said. “Everyone seems to be happy with the way we’re planning this time around. These are projects that local governments have already captured and we want to help them to get them done and apply them to the Chesapeake Bay Phase III WIP.”

Contact: Matthew Pennington, Eastern Panhandle Regional Planning & Development Council, mpennington@region9wv.com; or Alana Hartman, WV Department of Environmental Protection, alana.c.hartman@wv.gov.

New York

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is working closely with the Upper Susquehanna Coalition, New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, and local partners to develop New York’s Phase III WIPs. As with Phase II, New York expects to rely on the agricultural sector management practices and wastewater treatment plants to achieve nutrient and sediment reductions. New York intends to further improve tracking and reporting of management practices in the forestry and developed/urban sectors.

New York is developing local area planning goals that address water quality concerns, reduce costs, and maximize co-benefits. The state has proposed to develop local planning goals at the sub-watershed scale, focusing on “hotspots” that have a higher nutrient runoff yield and contain waterbody segments that have been identified as impaired for nutrients and sediment pollution or have a higher impact on the Chesapeake Bay based on location. These planning goals will be reviewed by local and state partners. Additional information is available on the DEC’s Phase III WIP website dec.ny.gov/lands/112126.html.

Contact: Sara Latessa, NY State Department of Environmental Conservation, sara.latessa@dec.ny.gov.

Delaware

Delaware’s Chesapeake Bay Interagency Workgroup, made up of state environmental and agricultural agencies, local governments, academic institutions, soil and water conservation districts and nonprofits, has agreed to divide planning targets by sector — agriculture, developed  and wastewater — per county, to aid in developing Delaware’s local planning goals. In the upcoming months, the workgroup will reach out to local officials to refine Delaware’s local planning goals and strategies to confirm what local government actions have been undertaken since the Phase II WIP to determine where more financial or technical assistance is needed. Delaware continues to review and have conversations with the EPA on Phase III WIP expectations, potential allocations and model review process.

Contact: Marcia Fox, Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Marcia.Fox@state.de.us.