This bill proposes to require the Secretary of Natural Resources to submit to the Legislature specific recommendations for administering, implementing, and financing water quality improvement in Vermont.  Vermont has multiple requirements related to water quality problems including implementation of a total maximum daily load (TMDL) for Lake Champlain, pending TMDLs for Lake Mempremagog and the Connecticut River, and implementation of 15 TMDLs for stormwater-impaired waters throughout the state.  All waters of the State are at risk of pollution or impairment and Vermont is required to prevent pollution and/or impairment of these waters.  Vermont currently does not have a long-term work plan to identify and prioritize State actions to improve water quality, nor does it have a plan to fund such a plan. This bill would require the Agency of Natural Resources to identify five priority actions the State must take in the next 10 years to improve water quality, recommend at least two financing options sufficient to fund implementation of the five priority actions, and explain how the Agency would implement the actions.  In addition, the Agency would be required to recommend a specific process by which water quality priorities in addition to the five priority actions would be addressed and financed.

January 7, 2014: Read First Time and Referred to the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.

Update: 1/28/2014

Senate Natural Resources and Energy is scheduled to hear testimony on S. 215 the week of January 27, 2014.

Click here to read the current version of this bill.

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