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Resource Type: Best Practice Guide    Topic: Smart CSO Control Plans

Balancing Green and Gray Solutions to CSO Management

The purpose of this report, Balancing Green and Gray Solutions to CSO Management, is to provide guidance to CSO permit holders and their Supplemental CSO Community Teams, to help guide the development of LTCPs for determining an optimal green/gray balance. Although the target audience is permittees and their communities, other readers should benefit from the summary of current CSO programs. It is recognized that there are varying paths towards inclusion of GI into LTCPs. Developing a methodology to measure and communicate the balance of green and gray infrastructure is an important component of CSO LTCPs. It is also desirable to promote the use of best practices like the USEPA’s community alternatives analysis roadmap with all CSO permittees. This report is not, however, intended to provide detailed technical guidance to permittees.

Resource Type: Report    Topic: Empowered Stakeholders

How Americans Relate to Water: A Qualitative Study

Americans are increasingly asked to make important decisions about managing our collective water resources. To do so, Water Main believes that people need both Water IQ, an understanding of key issues, and Water EQ, a personal connection to water.

How do Americans relate to water? To shed light on that question, The Water Main conducted this national study, How Americans Relate to Water: A Qualitative Study, that asked Americans just that.

For this study, How Americans Relate to Water: A Qualitative Study, a total of 201 surveys were completed with respondents from 11 selected regions of the United States, for an overall response rate of 5.5%. This exploratory study begins to break ground on a topic that is not yet well understood.

White paper:
Executive Summary:

Resource Type: Report    Topic: Lead in Drinking Water

Perspectives on State Legislation Concerning Lead Testing in School Drinking Water

The Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council undertook this study, Perspectives on State Legislation Concerning Lead Testing in School Drinking Water, to inform state legislators and advocates as they consider new state laws to address lead contamination in school drinking water. They reviewed the growing body of state laws concerning testing of lead in school water, and they identified relevant reports that could help understand the effectiveness of laws. They also contacted stakeholders with knowledge of the implementation and impact of the state laws. Finally, they analyzed how each law addresses key elements that may relate to the effectiveness of a law in terns of the coverage of schools, implementation of testing, risk, reduction, and disclosure.

Resource Type: Report    Topic: Effective and Financially Sustainable Systems

2018 Stormwater Utility Survey

This 2018 stormwater utility survey was conducted online, in the United States, during May through July of 2018. The results are presented under the following six sections:

  • Section 1: Organization and Operations presents a general profile of the respondents including population, size and characteristics of service area.
  • Section 2: Planning presents insights into what utility managers perceive to be the most important industry issues and stormwater infrastructure investment drivers. This section also highlights utility governance, the types of permit requirements that utilities have to comply with and the planning activities utilities engage in to address stormwater management. In addition, a new question was added this year regarding public-related partnership agreements (Question 13).
  • Section 3: Finance and Accounting reviews stormwater utility revenues, expenditures, sources of funding, and the adequacy of stormwater funding to meet utility obligations.
  • Section 4: Stormwater Rate Structure and Billing presents the types of costs recovered through user fees, the fee methodology used in setting rates, the rate structures and billing practices, and the average monthly residential rate of each utility that participated in the survey. Information on the types of exemptions and discounts that utilities offer, and insights on legal challenges are also provided. Calculated bills reflect rates in effect as of June 1, 2018.
  • Section 5: Stormwater Credits and Incentives offers insights into the types of credits, criteria used in offering credits, and innovative credit programs.
  • Section 6: Public Information/Education assesses the methods of education and multi-media sources used in educating and in disseminating information.

Resource Type: Fact Sheet    Topic: Other Best Practices

Funding Land Conservation Projects with the Clean Water State Revolving Fund

This fact sheet, Funding Land Conservation Projects with the Clean Water State Revolving Fund, describes opportunities to fund land conservation with the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF). The CWSRF can provide assistance for projects that result in the protection or restoration of surface water, which can include the purchase of land, leasing, fee-simple purchase, and easement. This fact sheet demonstrates how the CWSRF provides assistance to eligible recipients for projects promoting land conservation and restoration and highlights successful projects in California, Georgia, and Ohio.

Resource Type: Fact Sheet    Topic: Effective and Financially Sustainable Systems

EPA Fact Sheet: Drinking Water State Revolving Fund

This fact sheet, Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, describes the DWSRF program’s structure, including its water system and project eligibilities. It lists the multiple financial assistance mechanisms available to communities for their infrastructure and non-infrastructure water needs.

Resource Type: Report    Topic: Lead in Drinking Water

Lead in Drinking Water: Post-Flint Media Coverage and Policy Changes in the Northeast-Midwest Region

This report, Lead in Drinking Water: Post-Flint Media Coverage and Policy Changes in the Northeast-Midwest Region, released by the Northeast-Midwest Institute presents a comprehensive analysis of post-Flint statewide laws and regulations enacted in the NEMW states to improve water quality, as well as testing, reporting, and notification of lead results, and replacement of infrastructure.

The report catalogs the severity of the lead crisis in the Northeast and Midwest jurisdictions by using a novel, yet established methodology of reviewing news media coverage as a proxy for the severity of drinking water issues related to lead contamination. A review of news articles published in the years 2015, 2016, and 2017 found that the lead contamination problem is geographically spread across the region, but most concentrated in a few states such as Michigan, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Ohio.

The report also found that media coverage of the lead contamination issue was most intense in mid-2016, when the problem was high on the public agenda, but that the coverage quickly receded in visibility, with little to no media coverage of the lead problem in 2017, even though the seriousness of the crisis is just as bad today as before.

News release here.

Resource Type: Collection of Resources    Topic: Successful and Beneficial Green Infrastructure

Green Infrastructure Municipal Toolkit

The Green Infrastructure Municipal Toolkit is a one-stop online resource useful to any community in New Jersey, whether new to the opportunities green infrastructure presents or already implementing GI and seeking more specific expert guidance. The toolkit includes detailed information and a variety of tools that cities and towns can use to plan, implement, and sustain green infrastructure in public- and private-sector development projects.

Resource Type: Case Study    Topic: Other Best Practices

2017-2018 Survey of Farm Operators and Owners in the New Jersey Central Region of the Delaware River Watershed

This report, Survey of Farm Operators and Owners in the New Jersey Central Region of the Delaware River Watershed, summarizes findings from a 2017-2018 survey of farm operators and owners in Warren, Sussex and Hunterdon Counties of New Jersey, within the Central region of the Delaware River Watershed.

The survey project was motivated by a number of questions, including:

  1. Are farm operators/owners taking advantage of opportunities to develop conservation plans and stewardship plans with government agencies and non-profit groups?
  2. Are farm operators/owners employing conservation farming practices, such as installing filter strips and sowing cover crops? If so, why, and if not, why not?
  3. Are farm operators/owners participating in conservation programs with government agencies or non-profit groups? If so, why, and if not, why not?
  4. Are farm operators/owners generally satisfied with their experience participating in conservation programs, and what kind of impact are these programs having?
  5. How much do farm operators/owners know about threats to water quality in the Delaware River Watershed? And how much do farm operators/owners know about efforts to
    improve water quality in the region through the Delaware River Watershed Initiative?
  6. Overall, what are the major factors that farm operators/owners take into account when making farm management decisions?

Each of these research questions was explored through one or more survey questions, the findings from which are detailed in this report. On the survey, all questions asked respondents to comment on farm characteristics and practices in 2017, unless otherwise noted.

Resource Type: Best Practice Guide    Topic: Other Best Practices

Procurement Toolkit for Cities and Utilities

This Free Procurement Toolkit for Cities helps city and utility officials make critical early stage procurement decisions, including which “big city” procurement tool is most relevant and how to apply it to build resilience. The toolkit focuses on ways cities and utilities can use current procurement systems to enable better outcomes.

The procurement toolkit was piloted by seven U.S. cities: Anchorage (AK), El Paso (TX), Camden County MUA (NJ), Gary (IN), Norfolk (VA), Imperial Beach (CA) and Providence (RI).

With the generous support of the Kresge Foundationre:focus partners and The Atlas Marketplace brought together a cohort of seven cities with eight private sector implementing partner organizations to apply three innovative “big city” procurement tools to tackle major infrastructure challenges in smaller cities.