Regulatory Affairs Roundup

Construction Stormwater Permit

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is in the process of finalizing the draft language of the 2018 Construction Stormwater Permit. Once the draft 2018 Permit has been released, a public meeting will be held to solicit feedback from stakeholders and to explain the new permit. Notable changes include:

Format: The permit is being reconfigure and will look very different from what it is today. This will include a 20 percent reduction in the amount of text and the use of simpler, more direct language.

Ditch Stabilization: Clarifications over what is and is not permitted for ditch stabilization in varying conditions.

Contamination: Clarification on work in contaminated soils/ with contaminated water tables.

Infiltration Tables: There will be an adjustment on the use of infiltration rates.

Effective Date: Permit would go into effect once the payment is processed (no longer a seven-day timeframe).

MPCA is looking to issue an 18-month phase-in for the new 2018 Permit on all existing permits from the date the new Permit takes effect. MPCA is expecting the 2018 Permit to go into effect in Q1 2018.

Housing Industry News will have a copy of the draft 2018 Permit posted at once it is available.

Waters Of The United States Rule Delayed

The Environmental Protection Agency is looking to delay the effective date of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule by two years, the agency announced in November.

WOTUS, enacted in 2015, gives the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers the ability to protect “navigable waterways,” the effect of which was been costly federal permits to build or modify lands near covered waterways. Implementation of the WOTUS Rule was halted in 2015 by the U.S. 6th District Court.

In addition to the two-year delay, the EPA previously announced it is looking to revise which protected waters fall under the WOTUS Rule.

Water Reuse Guidelines

For the past year, a workgroup made of state agencies and interested parties has been examining how various state agencies should approach water refuse rulemaking. While not a binding rule, this draft report will outline a process and standards from which future water reuse rules will be based. The final report, to be issued in November, will provide guidance on housing related water reuse including stormwater reused for irrigation and water reuse within a home.

Included in the report will be a breakdown of which state agency has authority over a specific water reuse rule, water quality standards and additional criteria for water reuse.