Maryland’s NPDES Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Phase II General Permits

   
The Maryland Department of the Environment, Water and Science Administration (the Department) has reached a final determination to issue a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) General Permit for Discharges from State and Federal Small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4s) (General Discharge Permit No. 13-SF-5501, General NPDES No. MDR055501). The legal framework for permit requirements was provided in the federal Clean Water Act (CWA), Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) § 122 pertaining to NPDES MS4 programs, and numerous guidelines of the United States (U.S.) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In addition, this general permit relies on long established Statewide programs under the Environment Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR) Chapters 26.17.01 and 26.17.02, and policies and guidelines of the Department to improve stormwater controls and reduce the discharge of pollutants to protect local water quality.
 
MS4 owners and operators eligible under this general permit must submit a Notice of Intent (NOI) to the Department by October 31, 2018. An NOI serves as notification that the MS4 owner or operator intends to comply with the terms and conditions of this general permit. The permit expires on October 30, 2023, unless administratively continued by the Department.
 
This final determination permit requires State and federal agencies eligible for coverage to implement stormwater management programs to improve water quality and control the discharge of pollutants into and through their MS4s. These programs include the following six minimum control measures: public or personnel education and outreach; public or personnel participation and involvement; illicit discharge detection and elimination; construction site stormwater runoff control; post construction stormwater management; and pollution prevention and good housekeeping. The permit also establishes new requirements for impervious area restoration for twenty percent of existing developed lands that have little or no stormwater management. Restoration planning strategies and implementation schedules required by this permit shall improve local water quality and contribute to the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay.
 
In accordance with Maryland’s Administrative Procedures Act regarding this final determination, the Department met with numerous stakeholders, held a public hearing to accept testimony on February 6, 2017, and accepted public comments from December 22, 2016 through March 30, 2017. The comment period incorporated the additional 60 day extension period provided in Environment Article § 1-606(d)(2)(ii).
 
This general permit and the basis for final determination are available here:
Questions concerning the General Permit may be directed to Mr. Raymond Bahr at Raymond.Bahr@maryland.gov, or by phone at 410-537-3545 or call 1-800-633-6101 to make an appointment during the hours of 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Copies of the document may be procured at a cost of 36¢ per page.
 
The Department’s final determination is subject to judicial review at the request of any person that meets the threshold standing requirements under federal law and participated in the public participation process through the submission of written or oral comments. Requests for judicial review must be made within 30 days of publication of this notice, i.e., on or before May 28, 2018, in accordance with § 1-601 and § 1-605 of the Environment Article.
 
Information Concerning Tentative Determination
 
MDE held a public hearing concerning this tentative determination on February 6, 2017 at MDE, and accepted written comments through March 30, 2017. This comment period incorporated the additional 60 day extension period provided in Environment Article §1-606(d)(2)(ii).

Copies of the draft permit, fact sheet, transcripts and the attendance list from the Public Hearing, and the written comments received may be viewed here:

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