Vote NO on Part II of the Proposed Virginia Stormwater Regulations.
To the Regulatory Coordinator:
My name is Nikhil Deshpande and as a citizen of the Commonwealth, I am concerned with the technical mandates in the proposed stormwater regulations. As a licensed professional engineer with experience in the field of stormwater management, I understand the complexity and importance of providing water quality protection in Virginia, and offer the following comments and observations:
All these added SWM/BMP requirements will significantly affect and put restrictions on the by-right development of a site, thereby hindering development.
These proposed regulations will promote sprawl and hinder the redevelopment of properties.
A significant area of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed consists of agricultural land. These new regulations only target the development occurring in the watershed and do not address agricultural practices.
SWM/BMP facilities in Northern Virginia are designed in accordance with local jurisdictional requirements that are more stringent than the current state criteria. If these facilities are not serving their intended purpose, more resources should be spent on inspections and maintenance of such facilities as compared to enacting new regulations.
The new regulations do not provide any grandfathering provisions. There are a lot of sites which are currently part of an overall/regional SWM/BMP plan but are not developed. Absence of any grandfathering provisions could severely affect the development of sites.
The advice and recommendations of the members of the TAC committee are still not reflected in the new regulations.
The study conducted by Virginia Tech determined that these regulations would significantly add to the cost of development, thereby potentially hindering growth and restricting economic recovery.
The fees associated with the new regulations, are higher than the current fees. It has not been demonstrated that the current fees are inadequate and therefore require an increase.
The results of the Department of Planning and Budget’s Economic Impact Analysis determined that the cost likely exceeds the benefits for one or more of the proposed changes.
The new requirements propose treating 1” of runoff. Per the current requirements, treatment is provided for the first ½” of runoff. The new regulations double the treatment requirement, thereby increasing the cost and size of the facility.
The new regulations currently do not have any phosphorus removal efficiency associated with manufactured BMP systems that have shown to perform well.
I respectfully request that you vote NO on Part II of the proposed regulations and ask that the Technical Advisory Committee be reconvened and encourage the Department to more thoroughly study the regulations and propose more realistic standards to preserve water quality here in Virginia. I would like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to comment on the proposed regulations.