House Bill 2777 – An Act to enable the Commonwealth’s administration of the Massachusetts pollutant discharge elimination system

This bill, filed by the Governor, is necessary to enable Massachusetts to receive federal delegation of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (‘NPDES’), which is a water quality program mandated by the federal government that includes permitting, compliance and enforcement activities relating to the discharge of pollutants. Under the Clean Water Act of 1972, the United States Environmental Protection Administration administers a number of programs to ensure water quality across the United States, including through the NPDES system. Individual states have the option of applying to the EPA for authorization to administer the programs themselves, subject to oversight by the EPA, or to have the federal government administer the program. (According to the Governor, 46 other states have already opted to administer the program themselves.) Under the NPDES legislation, the EPA currently issues stormwater permits to over 250 cities and towns across the Commonwealth, and hundreds of additional permits to industrial users and municipal wastewater treatment plants. This bill would move much of that permitting process locally to the Department of Environmental Protection, which already administers other federal environmental programs in the areas of drinking water, hazardous waste, and clean air. The bill makes a series of technical changes to the Massachusetts Clean Waters Act to bring our statute into conformity with federal requirements, and also gives DEP explicit authorization to apply for NPDES delegation.
See Bill H.2777
Referred to the committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture
Please contact your representative in support of this bill, and contact members of the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture. See Position Statement of Professional Associations: Fact Sheet, NPDES, FINAL, 5-9-17
See Senate Budget Amendment#876 to fund NPDES primacy – Professional Associations support letter:Support of Senate Budget Amendment NPDES, final, 5-22-17

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