“The permit requires a public participation process that engages the affected public, including hydraulically connected communities, throughout the three phases of the LTCP and through the use of various outreach methods.” NJDEP Public Participation Guidance.
Supplemental CSO teams have an important role in community outreach. These teams meet periodically and provide feedback on the Long Term Control Plan planning process, review new information and share that information with impacted communities. The Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission held a regional meeting on Jan. 9 with its members: City of Bayonne, Borough of East Newark, Town of Guttenberg, Town of Harrison, Jersey City Municipal Utilities Authority, Town of Kearny, City of Newark, City of Paterson, and the North Bergen Municipal Utilities Authority.
- Act Now: Now is the time to talk to your municipal leaders about the alternatives to combined sewer overflows that will benefit your community and stop sewage overflows. Find contact information for you municipal leaders and CSO contacts here.
- Financial Capabilities Assessment: Financial capability assessments showed the median household income for each municipality and the calculation of a two percent rate increase on water bills. More information is necessary to determine if this is a sustainable option, and permit holders will decide whether to investigate further.
- Water Quality: Water quality models showed that combined sewer overflows are impacting water quality and that some, but not all, of the water bodies are meeting water quality standards.
- Public Engagement: There will be at least one more public meeting before the June 1, 2020 submittal deadline for the CSO Long Term Control Plans. A decision has not been made about meetings past that date.
- Comments on Development and Evaluation of Alternatives Reports: In total, 134 comments were submitted. Three areas received the most comments: green infrastructure, public input and outreach, and the Development and Implementation of Regional Alternatives.
Missed the meeting? You can watch it here.
You can also look through the presentation here.
For more information on the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission’s regional team visit: https://www.njcleanwaterways.com/