Environmental Council (HEC) is voicing its opposition to legislation which
it says would increase the likelihood of stormwater runoff pollution at
HB 1266, introduced
by State Rep. Doug Miller, R-Elkhart, “is drastic legislation that would
take authority away from local stormwater professionals,” HEC said in a
statement released after deadline on Tuesday. “This loss of oversight would
lead to increases in sediment pollution.”
According to his
official website, Miller is managing partner of Tailor Made Homes LLC and
owner of Creekside Realty LLC and White Pines Properties LLC, is seated on
the Board of Directors of the Builders Association of Elkhart County, and
holds a life directorship in the Indiana Builders Association.
Miller’s bill would
do the following:
* Prohibit a
municipal stormwater department from requiring sediment and erosion control
measures more stringent than those imposed by the Indiana Department of
that a stormwater department complete its preliminary review of a builder’s
Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) within 48 hours of its being
submitted, a significantly accelerated time frame than the maximum 28-day
window used by IDEM.
that the person reviewing a SWPPP be a registered professional engineer,
architect, or surveyor.
* And forbid
an stormwater department which has approved a builder’s SWPPP from issuing a
stop-work order if it proves that the erosion and sediment control measures
provided by that SWPPP are inadequate.
from construction sites is a major source of sediment pollution in waterways
and lakes,” HEC said. “Sediment pollution smothers aquatic habitats and
increases the chance of algal blooms. Under the federal Clean Water Act, as
administered by the state, construction sites have to have run-off control
plans and those plans are reviewed by local stormwater professionals who
judge whether they are adequate. Every construction site is different in
size, lay-out, soil type, and relationship to local lakes and waterways.
That’s why the run-off control plans have to be individualized, and the
local storm water professionals are in the best position to judge them.”
stems from complaints from the construction industry that requirements vary
between locations and that some local stormwater professionals are
over-zealous,” HEC noted. “HB 1266 is not the solution. Instead, there
should be discussion about the enforcement problems with IDEM and with the
stormwater professional associations.”
Environmental Affairs Committee was scheduled to hold a hearing on HB 1266
at 12:30 p.m. (CT) today. HEC’s environmental health director, Dr. Indra
Frank, as well as the Indiana Association for Floodplain and Stormwater
Management, were both on the list of those set to testify on the bill.
HEC urged Hoosiers
who are concerned about HB 1266 to contact their state representative.
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