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This blog focuses on real estate, land use and construction-related topics affecting Virginia and the Washington, D.C. metro area. With topics ranging from contract drafting and negotiation to local and regional land use project updates, the attorneys at Bean, Kinney & Korman provide timely insight and commentary on the issues affecting owners, builders, developers, contractors, subcontractors and other players in the industry. If you are interested in having us cover a specific topic, please let us know.

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Posts tagged Stormwater.

broken silt fenceThe US EPA was forced to withdraw a portion of its proposed storm water management regulations in the context of a pending court challenge by the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) and other parties.  In the pending appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, the EPA filed an unopposed motion to vacate part of its final rule regarding "Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards for the Construction and Development Point Source Category".

Chesapeake Bay WatershedThe Environmental Protection Agency is in the process of developing proposed national rulemaking to strengthen its stormwater program. The proposed rulemaking, which was previously announced in the Federal Register on Dec. 28, 2009, could dramatically alter the playing field for development of all types.

This is particularly true in the D.C. region given its placement in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The EPA has recently proposed sediment limits for the Chesapeake Bay in addition to previously issued limits for nitrogen and phosphorous.

Football PuntAfter much back and forth, the Soil and Water Conservation Board announced on January 14th that they voted to suspend their hotly debated changes to stormwater regulations to permit an additional 30-day comment period.  The stage was formally suspended on January 26, 2010 which means that the status will be stuck in suspension until a new round of comments opens from February 15 through March 17.

We reported on the both the initial regulations and later changes to the proposed regulations which eased some of their impacts on the home building industry.  The Home Builders Association of Virginia indicates that they mobilized significant response and opposition to even the later round of regulations.

As noted in our previous stormwater regulation discussion, The Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board has been considering amending their regulations.  Per the Virginia Association of Counties, the Board adopted an amended version of the regulations last night.  The extensive amendments will translate to a new public comment period to begin on October 26.  The Board is scheduled to vote on final adoption "sometime around December 9" according the VACO.

The Virginia Department of Transportation and the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board are each respectively in the process of examining and issuing regulations impacting the development and construction industry.  The proposed VDOT regulations cover access management and relate to minor arterials, collectors, and local streets.  The public comment period began September 15, 2009 and is set to end on October 14, 2009.

The Soil and Water Board's stormwater regulations include significant amendments to stormwater management and were designed to address water quality and quantity and local stormwater management criteria.  Public comment ended on August 21, 2009 resulting in 408 comments.   The very significant level of commentary reflects a high degree of citizen and business interest and involvement.  The comments range from general but impassioned calls to defend the environment to quite a bit of substantive critical comments from design professionals, builders, and ordinary citizens regarding the regulations and their potential resulting economic impact.