Draft Summary of Public Questions & Comments,
Maryland's Clean Water Action Plan meeting, Frederick, MD, September 23, 1998
Does the Potomac River Heritage designation have any significance for the Clean Water Action Plan process?
The American Heritage designation takes into account social, economic and cultural factors as well as environmental ones, so it is broader than the criteria used to determine CWAP Priority watersheds. However, in the implementation phase, we will encourage projects that establish partnerships with other initiatives, such as those under the American Heritage River Program.
Can you give examples of activities funded for implementation of CWAP?
This year, most of the new funds for CWAP will be directed through EPA's Nonpoint Source Program. Activities that would be eligible for funding through this program include stream restoration, community education, cover crop establishment, groundwater protection, etc. In addition to "on the ground" implementation, some funds will be available to strengthen or create watershed protection strategies.
How is Maryland coordinating with other States?
We have received and analyzed draft Unified Watershed Assessment information from most of the States adjoining Maryland (We have not yet received Virginia's report). An examination of these draft results show that there is fairly good agreement with other States in identifying Category 1 basins. (13 of 15 federal basins shared with adjoining States are listed as Category 1- leaving out several shared with VA).
In terms of priority watersheds, however, there are more discrepancies (only four basins share Category 1 Priority status). Based on information in these draft reports, the reasons for differing priorities vary. Delaware's priorities are set by a court sponsored consent-decree resulting from a 303(d) list settlement (part of the Total Maximum Daily Loads process). Pennsylvania did not set priorities in their draft report; they are waiting for completion of their public meeting process. We will continue to coordinate with adjoining states as more information becomes available.
Additional comments made:
Pleased to see that the Tributary Team has taken a leading role in helping to get this information out to the public.
Several individuals expressed concerns about local land use decisions and their impact on water quality.
Interest in learning more about what types of projects are eligible for CWAP funding. A group has launched a local water quality monitoring project for the Monocacy River for high school students. They would like to receive a request for proposals.