February 2022, Volume 24, Issue 2

Thank you to our Newsletter Sponsors!

 Table of Contents

2022 Annual Conference – Join Us in Sanibel!

FSA Annual Conference Banner

Registration opens today for FSA’s 2022 Annual Conference! The Conference will be held June 15-17, 2022 at the Sanibel Harbour Marriott and will focus on Vision and Action: Working Together to Create Safe and Sustainable Watersheds. This year’s event will provide an opportunity for stormwater professionals to learn how to increase the resiliency of our Florida communities in response to the continuing threats to our water resources. Sessions will be provided by industry-leading experts and thought leaders on regulatory and management topics that matter to you. If you only attend one event in 2022, this is the one you can't miss! View the agenda, registration rates, safety guidelines, and more. Members receive discounted rates and if you register early, you receive an additional discount. Be sure to register early, attendance will be limited to ensure the health and safety of all participants. 

Welcome to the New and Improved FSA fastTracks Newsletter

We are excited to announce improvements to the FSA fastTracks newsletter this month! First, you’ve probably noticed things looks a little different. Instead of scrolling through a long page of articles, you can now view article links to quickly select information that is important to you. This also allows FSA to have a repository of information that is easily accessible to FSA members year-round.

The newsletter is a FSA member benefit so be sure to login. Once you’re logged in, you will be able easily view and access whatever content you wish. FSA membership includes access for all of your staff. If you don’t know your login credentials just let us know, we’re happy to help!

 WOTUS Rule Revisions

There have been two noteworthy developments in policy regarding the definitions of Waters of the US or “WOTUS” since the last newsletter. First, the comment period on the new proposal of EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers to revise the definitions closed on February 7, 2022. See FSA’s comments here. EPA has stated that the proposed policy is somewhere in-between that of the expansive 2015 regulations and the significantly narrowed 2020 regulations, and reflects policy that is based on pre-2015 regulations as modified by subsequent court cases. The WOTUS definitions are important to local governments because such waters are subject to the provisions of the Clean Water Act (CWA) and therefore NPDES permitting programs, dredge and fill regulations, and other programs. The second development is that the US Supreme Court has agreed to hear a request to clarify its 2006 decision in Rapanos vs. United States regarding the CWA’s application to wetlands. WOTUS policy has been subject to wide fluctuations over the past 20+ years, due in part to highly variable court decisions and policy changes from one administration to another. FSA will continue to monitor the situation and keep members informed. 

Stormwater Legislation at Your Fingertips

Be sure to visit FSA’s Legislative Page during the 2022 Session for updates on all stormwater related legislation. FSA’s Legislative Page is frequently updated with a list of Priority Issues, Bill Tracking Reports, current news articles and information on individual bills. These resources are available for FSA members only; you will need your username and password to login. The Legislative Session is set to end on March 11, 2022. 

2022 Legislative Session Recap Webinar

Join FSA on March 17, 2022 for the only "post Session" webinar focused on Florida stormwater legislation! The webinar will examine what was introduced, what passed and failed in 2022, and what might be returning for 2023. FSA's Legislative and Agency Relations Committee Chair and Lobbyist will review legislative actions on biosolids, septic tanks, permitting requirements, measures to preempt the regulatory authority of local governments, and many other bills. Register today to save your seat! The webinar is brought to FSA members free of charge thanks to the sponsorship of Applied Sciences.

Kurt Spitzer

Mark Thomasson
Legislative Committee Chair

FSA & FSAEF Board Elections in June

There will be elections to fill vacancies on the Boards of Directors of the Florida Stormwater Association (FSA) and the FSA Educational Foundation (FSAEF) during this year’s Annual Conference. FSA is looking for dynamic leaders dedicated to ensuring the continued success of the Association. This is your chance to help lead the primary organization dedicated to furthering the stormwater management profession and water quality improvement programs in Florida. What’s in it for you?

  • An opportunity to enhance the value and set the direction of FSA and FSAEF
  • A significant role in advancing your profession and water quality programs
  • Access to up-to-date information about the challenges facing your profession
  • The chance to exchange ideas and perspectives with other volunteer leaders

We want to hear from you! FSA needs your Leadership Recommendation Form by April 29, 2022. Recommendations received after the deadline, including nominations made from the floor at the Annual Membership Meeting, will be accepted, however, candidate details cannot be included in the upcoming Elections page. 

Stormwater Needs Assessments Due

Chapter No. 2021-194, Laws of Florida (HB 53, 2021 Session) requires all local governments with wastewater or stormwater management systems to create a 20-year needs analysis, including a description of the system, the number of future residents served, revenues and expenditures, maintenance costs, etc. and transmit the analysis to the Legislature’s Office of Economic and Demographic Research (EDR) by June 2022. EDR’s survey instrument for compiling information is available online. Comments or questions should be directed to EDR. A recording of a workshop discussing implementation of HB 53 that was held during FSA’s 2021 Winter Conference is available online.

 Consolidated Bacteria TMDLs for Florida

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) has initiated the development of TMDLs for fecal indicator bacteria (FIB). FDEP is piloting its new consolidated bacteria TMDL approach for impaired waters in the Everglades West Coast Basin and intends to address all FIB impaired waters following approval of the 2022 Biennial Assessment of Impaired Waters. Join us at the FSA Annual Conference for a workshop hosted by FDEP to learn more about the Department’s plans and timelines.

Statewide Stormwater Design Criteria TAC

The last meeting of the Statewide Stormwater Design Criteria Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held in November 2021. Recordings of all of the meetings of the TAC are available on the Clean Waterways Act TAC webpage. The TAC was formed to assist FDEP and the Water Management Districts in updating the state’s design criteria for the construction of stormwater systems, as directed by Senate Bill 712 which passed during the 2020 Legislative Session. More information may be found on FSA’s Advocacy page. Stay tuned, FDEP is expected to initiate rulemaking to update the stormwater design criteria soon.

Blue-Green Algae Task Force Update

FDEP’s Blue-Green Algae Task Force met on February 10, 2022 and focused primarily on onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems (OSTDS) and the recommendations of the OSTDS Technical Advisory Committee. View the February meeting recording now.

Does Your Stormwater Certification Expire in 2022?

Don’t let your FSA Stormwater Operator certification expire! The first opportunity to renew in 2022 will be through online webinars held on April 5, 2022. FSA Certifications must be renewed every five years. The Fogarty Training Center offers Online Recertification Webinars that provide a convenient, cost-effective way to renew your certification. Register today for Level 1 and/or Level 2.

Not sure when your certification expires? Log in to your personal FSA profile, scroll down to find your Level 1 and/or Level 2 expiration year or you can view the Stormwater Operator Certification Renewal Date List

Free Stormwater BMP Life-Cycle Costing Tool

Determining treatment effectiveness is an important part of project planning, design, grant funding, and ultimately achieving the most efficient investment of resources. However, there is no industry standard for how to go about doing this. While there are standards for BMP efficiencies, there is not an industry standard in Florida for determining life-cycle costing. With treatment effectiveness often being one consideration in water quality grants, the absence of an industry standard leads to unequitable comparisons between projects. Did you know that the Florida Stormwater Association Educational Foundation’s (FSAEF) recent research project developed a costing approach methodology and a BMP Life-Cycle Costing Tool to aide in the development of an industry standard for the state of Florida? Visit the FSAEF Research page to find our more and download the tool today. 

Stormwater Scholarships for Florida Graduate Students

The FSA Educational Foundation’s Scholarship Program awards financial assistance to qualified students attending Florida colleges and universities whose educational interest is in stormwater research, management or finance. The Foundation will be awarding $2,000 scholarships in 2022. Applications are accepted annually from graduate students in colleges or schools of engineering, natural science, public administration (or closely related fields) that have an interest in stormwater quality, management or finance. Qualified applicants should submit an Application Form by August 12, 2022. Please help us spread the word!

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