Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Conservation and Recreation
Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board
Stormwater Management Regulations AS 9 VAC 25-870 [4 VAC 50 ‑ 60]
Action Amend Parts I, II, and III of the Virginia Stormwater Management Program Permit Regulations to address water quality and quantity and local stormwater management program criteria.
Stage Proposed
Comment Period Ended on 8/21/2009
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8/21/09  7:49 am
Commenter: Diana Parker, Past Chair, Falls of James Group Sierra Club

Support for Stricter Storm Water Regulations;

Department of Conservation and Recreation&Storm Water Control Board

203 Governor Street, Suite 302

Richmond, Virginia 23219

Subject: Support for Stricter Virginia Stormwater Regulations

Dear Mr Maroon and Mrs. Watlington,   

The Town Hall Regulatory System will not accept my online comments..........See that it also did not accept John J. Zeugner, IV.   

This is written to append comments that I made at the Public Hearing in Richmond July, 2009. I provide herein support for stricter Storm Water Regulations. As former Chair of the Falls of the James Group Sierra Club, and a volunteer water quality monitor and environmental activist in Chesterfield, I have been arguing for stricter code and compliance for over a decade. I have railed at the impacts uncontrolled development have had in Chesterfield, and I have spoken out against bad policy and performance when Chesterfield did not follow it’s own ordinances and that of the state’s Chesapeake Bay Local Assistance Department (CBLAD)/DCR policy.

I am attaching two excellent studies prepared by SELC Where Are We Growing which was followed by Connections and Choices wherein it is indicated the Richmond Region, especially Chesterfield is developing out at a faster rate than other areas, with more vehicle miles traveled, and more impact on the environment caused by sprawling unimpeded development. Most of this is caused by lack of good faith use of the toolbox of state regulations for restrained growth, and a lack of coordination to ensure schools, roads, and neighborhoods are supported by an adequate infrastructure. They do not follow Virginia’s Transportation Vision, and have added many maintenance requirements to Virginia’s overtaxed road system through uncontrolled development—current zoning far exceeds the demand. And Chesterfield has not taken steps to provide it’s aging population with adequate public transportation.

In allowing bad development policy to prevail, Chesterfield, and other Richmond area counties are also NOT in compliance with Chesapeake Bay Local Assistance Policy Guidance on protection of streams. Chesterfield is noncompliant in ordinance for nontidal wetlands with a 500' policy allowing development to ignore streams beyond 500' of perennial flow. I attach a Chesterfield map reflecting their policy guidance which is included in their ordinance. Bad policy guidance leads to confusion by developers and destruction and sedimentation impact to our streams. In a recent bad planning commission decision, Falls of the James Group prevailed in having CBLAD to determine a perennial stream had not been adequately protected, while Chesterfield maintained it did not deserve 100' RPA protection. The Planning Commission approved the zoning so another development will be placed in RPA--thus impacting storm water runoff and as a tributary of Proctor’s Creek, also impacts for the Chesapeake Bay. CBLAD documentation attached shows this is standard with Chesterfield.(see Map)

I also attach a study done by the Hands Across the Lake, a Chesterfield environmental group which strives to maintain a viable Swift Creek Reservoir, this after the failure of the Chesterfield Falling Creek Reservoir by sediment influx. HAL has also worked for over a decade for stricter Storm Water Discharge, Pollution control of Phosphorus-containing sediment and was largely responsible for the Upper Swift Creek Plan for Reservoir protection and improved storm water abatement. They continue to work for stricter standards as Dr. Clapp’s testimony during the public hearing indicated. Chesterfield Utility Department says they can make water of mud.

Bad policy for storm water has lead to many failures of Chesterfield BMP, storm water retention, and sensitive streambeds, and creeks which feed our Chesapeake Bay and Southern Rivers. Please pass these needed regulations, require enforcement, and protect our health and water resources "for our families, for our future."


Diana C. Parker, August 20, 2009

10700 Chalkley Road, Richmond VA 23237-4048 804-748-7842

Attachs: HAL Impact of Runoff Pollution 9/2/2002 SELC: Where Are We Growing& Connections&Choices, maps, and CBLAD comment by snailmail

CommentID: 9825