May 2022, Volume 24, Issue 5 

Thank you to our Newsletter Sponsors!

 Table of Contents

FSA’s Annual Conference Reaches Capacity

The FSA Annual Conference will be held June 15-17, 2022 and will focus on Vision and Action: Working Together to Create Safe and Sustainable Watersheds. This year’s event features a number of presentations on current stormwater topics including Resiliency Planning for Florida Stormwater programs, a review of the 2022 Legislative Session and the impacts to water policy across the state, a look at FDEP’s new consolidated bacteria TMDLs, and much more! The conference is sold out, so if you are unable to join us in June, we hope that you will consider joining us for future events!  Mark your calendars now for FSA’s Fall Seminar on September 16, 2022 and the FSA Winter Conference to be held November 30 – December 2, 2022 both in Lake Buena Vista – stay tuned, details coming soon!

FSA and FSAEF Board Elections Coming in June

FSA is looking for dynamic leaders dedicated to ensuring the continued success of the Association. There will be elections to fill vacancies on the Boards of Directors of the Florida Stormwater Association and the FSA Educational Foundation during the Friday business meeting at the Annual Conference. This is your chance to help lead the primary organization dedicated to furthering the stormwater management profession and water quality improvement programs in Florida.

We want to hear from you! If you’re interested in serving, please submit a leadership nomination form today! Hurry, the deadline to submit is June 8th! After June 8th, nominations will only be accepted from the floor at the in-person Annual Membership Meetings.

Elections will occur at the Annual Membership Meetings of the FSA and FSA Educational Foundation, mark your calendar now! Meetings will occur on June 17, 2022, at the Sanibel Harbour Marriott from 8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. We hope to see you there!

Join a FSA Committee in 2022!

FSA is fortunate to have over 80 volunteers supporting the organization throughout the year. If you are looking to make connections, gain insights into Association operations, or expand your service to the stormwater industry, getting involved as a FSA Committee member is a great place to start. Put your passion to work for FSA today!

Visit FSA’s Committee page to see current Committee members and be sure to complete a Request Form prior to June 24, 2022. Appointments to FSA's Committees will occur in mid-July. Note that reappointment to a Committee is not automatic so submit your request today.

Kim Shugar to Head DEAR at FDEP

Kim Shugar, Director of DEAR at FDEPKim Shugar has been appointed Director of the Division of Environmental Assessment and Restoration (DEAR) at FDEP effective June 1, 2022. The Division is responsible for the administration of Florida’s TMDL, BMAP and related programs, such as the management of waterbody assessment programs and the development of surface water quality standards. The FDEP Laboratory is also located within the DEAR umbrella, and provides the Department and other agencies with environmental analytical services.

Before joining the Division, Ms. Shugar served as Deputy Director of the Office of Agricultural Water Policy at FDACS, Policy Chief of the House Natural Resources Committee, and Deputy Director of Land Acquisition and Management and Director of Intergovernmental Programs at SFWMD. She holds an MS degree in Environmental Engineering Services from UF.  Join FSA in welcoming Ms. Shugar to the Department!

FDEP Holds Workshop on Draft Stormwater Design Criteria

FDEP has held the first workshop on the updated statewide stormwater design criteria on May 18th. The workshop focused on two key draft chapters: Definitions and Criteria for Evaluation. Comments on those chapters, and on any other aspect of the rulemaking process or the Summary Report of the Statewide Stormwater Design Criteria Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) should be sent to [email protected]. Updating the state’s design criteria for the construction of stormwater systems was directed by Senate Bill 712 (2020 Legislative Session.) Recordings of all of the meetings of the TAC are available on the TAC webpage; additional information may be found on FSA’s Advocacy page.

SW Needs Assessments Due in June

HB 53 presentation

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 assessment, including a description of the system, the number of future residents served, revenues and expenditures, maintenance costs, etc., and to transmit that information to your county government prior to June 30, 2022. Counties are required to compile the information received and transmit their compiled reports to the Legislature’s Office of Economic and Demographic Research (EDR) on or before July 31, 2022. EDR’s survey instrument for compiling data and related information are available online. A recording of FSA's workshop on implementing the new requirements is also available online. If you have any questions, contact EDR.

WOTUS Revisions 

There have been no new developments concerning EPA’s new set of definitions to be used when determining whether a waterbody is subject to federal jurisdiction. The normal time for publication of a final rule may be delayed because of the US Supreme Court’s decision to hear a request (Sackett v. EPA) asking that it “clarify” its 2006 ruling in Rapanos v. United States regarding the conditions under which wetlands are “jurisdictional.” WOTUS definitions are important to local governments because they determine which waters are subject to the provisions of the Clean Water Act (CWA) and therefore NPDES permitting requirements, dredge and fill regulations, and other programs. See FSA’s comments on EPA’s draft rules and watch the FSA Advocacy Page for further developments!

Bacteria TMDLs

FDEP recently published draft updates to fecal indicator bacteria TMDLs for certain impaired surface waters in the Everglades West Coast Basin not meeting applicable criteria for Escherichia coli, enterococci, or fecal coliform bacteria.  Although currently limited to waters in Southwest Florida, the intent is that the proposed TMDLs serve as a pilot for a new, consolidated approach that FDEP will use to address fecal indicator bacteria impairments on a statewide basis.  More information on the proposed TMDLs and draft Reports may be found on the Department’s website.  The comment period on the draft TMDLs closed in April.  See FSA’s comments here.  FSA’s primary concern with the proposed rules is that it tends to place most of the burden to prove or disprove the actual source of bacterial pollution on the MS4 permit holder.  A workshop on the proposed revisions to bacteria TMDLs will be held during FSA’s Annual Conference in June.

FSA’s Veto Request of SB 620

There is still no word from the Governor’s Office concerning FSA’s request to veto SB 620, the “Local Business Protection Act.”  The bill adds a new cause of action that businesses may bring against local governments in certain situations.  Although it provides for several exemptions, the exemptions are not clear, set a bad precedent for pollution control programs and will be litigated for years to come.  View FSA’s veto request.

Did You Miss FSA’s May Webinar on Exploring Infrastructure and Resilience Grants?

It's not too late to view The New Landscape of Stormwater Grants: Exploring Infrastructure and Resilience Opportunities Webinar. FSA's May webinar explored one community’s journey to fund community-wide resiliency planning projects utilizing grant funding and explored funding opportunities with an overview of Florida’s Resilient Grant Program. FSA  members can view the webinar recording online at no cost, thanks to the generous sponsorship of Applied Sciences.

FSA Educational Foundation is Providing Scholarships! 

Droplet ScholarshipThe FSA Educational Foundation’s Scholarship Program awards financial assistance to qualified graduate students attending Florida colleges and universities. Applications are accepted annually from graduate-level 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 along with supporting materials by August 12, 2022.

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