Stream Alteration Permits — Comments sought

Comments Sought: Draft Stream Alteration General Permit
The typical flood seasons of spring and early summer will soon be here, and the state wants to have a new Stream Alteration General Permit in place to ensure Vermont has clear standards in place should a disaster strike. The General Permit will provide authorization for activities that may change, alter, or modify the course, current, or cross section of any watercourse within or along the boundaries of Vermont either by movement, fill, or by excavation of ten cubic yards or more in any year. Lessons learned from managing stream alterations in 2011-2012, and the subsequent passage of Act 138, necessitate a rewrite of the General Permit. Act 138 requires the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) to establish Rules for the regulation of emergency protective measures that are carried out by municipalities to address imminent threats to public safety and property. Proposed General Permit changes include:
• Provisions for the State authorization of protective measures as required in Act 138;
• Other changes in 10 V.S.A. Chapter 41 Stream Alterations brought about by Act 138; and
• Clarification of state standards in the wake of Vermont’s experience during and after Tropical Storm Irene to help the state and municipalities with FEMA reimbursement.
The draft permit, and other information about the review process, are available at http://www.watershedmanagement.vt.gov/cfm/notices/rivers-notices.cfm. The 30-day public notice for a public meeting on the draft was issued March 11th. The public meeting will be held from 6-8 p.m. in Montpelier at 1 National Life Drive, Main 2 in the Winooski River Meeting Room. Written comments can be submitted by April 12, 2013 to Mike Kline, State Rivers Program Manager, at mike.kline@state.vt.us.

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