Stormwater Policy and Advocacy

Each year during Water Week, the Stormwater Community hosts the National Stormwater Policy Forum to advance the latest legislative and regulatory concerns of the stormwater sector to members of Congress and federal regulators.

Since 2018, the WEF Stormwater Institute has driven stormwater advocacy to the next level. The National Stormwater Policy Forum has evolved to increase the impact of its efforts to bring stormwater professionals to learn about current policy issues driving the stormwater sector.

As part of this event, the annual Recommendation to Improve the Stormwater Program In the U.S. document is developed and updated by Water Environment Federation (WEF) and National Municipal Stormwater Alliance (NMSA) volunteers. The goal of the document is to provide clear and concise requests to Congress based on the needs of the sector, whether that is policy updates, funding for programs, or research. This document is available during meetings with congressional representatives during the National Policy Fly-in on Water Week.

Some of the impacts of this document along with other WEF stormwater projects have been

  • funding for Stormwater Centers of Excellence,
  • Atlas 14 update approved through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and 
  • networking opportunities with high-level officers and federal regulatory figures.


See the reports from past years

2020  2021  2022 2023


2023 National Stormwater Policy Forum

During Water Week 2023, WEF’s Stormwater Institute in partnership with National Municipal Stormwater Alliance (NMSA) organized a half-day event that brought together stormwater professionals from across the country to engage with national policymakers. The event was co-hosted by the National League of Cities (NLC) and the National Association of Counties (NACo).

The forum provided an opportunity for WEF, NMSA, NLC, NACO members, and all other stormwater professionals to learn about current policy issues driving the stormwater sector. The event was held at the National Association of Counties and National League of Cities premises in Washington, D.C. on April 24.

The event covered topics relating to stormwater design standards updates, climate change resilience, and contaminants of emerging concern such as PFAS and 6ppD/6ppD-quinone. In addition, attendees listened to regulation updates, congressional updates, funding, and finance resources relevant to the stormwater sector. Below you can find a recap of the online event as well as the resource regarding the event.

2023 Stormwater Recommendations Document

2023 National Stormwater Policy Forum Slide Deck


 

Virtual Stormwater Policy Forum 2022

During Water Week 2022, WEF’s Stormwater Institute hosted the sixth annual Stormwater Policy Forum. On April 25, 2022, a number of key speakers joined us to talk about the latest legislative and regulatory updates as well as policy trends and emerging topics. We also reviewed the policy asks for 2022 from WEF’s Stormwater Institute, which aims to improve the stormwater program in the United States.

Below you will find the topics covered and the amazing speakers that joined us:

  • Keynote Speaker on Infrastructure Funding by Andrew Sawyers, Director of the Office of Wastewater Management at U.S. EPA
  • Updates on Infrastructure Bill Funding by Steve Dye, Legislative Director at Water Environment Federation
  • Stormwater Institute Recommendation Document Review: Steve Dye, Legislative Director at Water Environment Federation, Scott Taylor, Stormwater Institute Chair and Senior Vice President of Michael Baker International, Dr. Seth Brown Executive Director of National Municipal Stormwater Alliance (NMSA), Rand Neprash, National Municipal Stormwater Alliance (NMSA) Vice-Chair and Stantec Consulting’s Stormwater Regulatory Specialist.
  • Panel 1U.S. EPA Updates presented by Lisa Biddle, Municipal Branch of U.S. EPA’s Water Permits Division
  • Panel 2Stormwater Financial Needs and Funding Accessibility. Panelists are Deirdre Finn, Executive Director of the Council of Infrastructure Financing Authorities (CIFA), Teri Wenck, Director of Fitch Rating Agency, and Seth Brown, Executive Director of National Municipal Stormwater Alliance (NMSA)

A few helpful resources to get yourself up to speed if you missed it or would like a refresher:

For more information on Water Week 2022, visit www.waterweek.us


Water Week 2021 – Stormwater Events

Stormwater Asks for Water Week 2021 Webcast

Water Week 2021 and the National Water Policy Fly-In was held virtually. To prepare for potential meetings with your Members of Congress, the WEF Stormwater Institute hosted a webcast on Monday, April 19th, 2021 to discuss the stormwater-specific asks in the 2021 Recommendations to Improve the Stormwater Program in the U.S. document. We also explained how you can participate in Water Week and the Fly-In virtually. Use the presentation template provided below during your virtual congressional meetings.

Stormwater Policy Forum Webcasts – Parts 1 and 2

During Water Week 2021, WEF’s Stormwater Institute will virtually host the fifth annual Stormwater Policy Forum. Join us to hear the latest legislative and regulatory updates as well as policy trends and emerging topics.

Part 1 Webcast Recording

During the Part 1 webcast on Monday, April 26, attendees heard from US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials on a variety of topics including stormwater permits, integrated planning, and wet weather issues:

  • Andrew Sawyers, Director, Office of Wastewater Management, Office of Water, US EPA
  • Ellen Tarquinio, Water Infrastructure and Resilience Finance Center, US EPA
  • Jamie Piziali, Municipal Ombudsman, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Relations, US EPA
  • Lisa Biddle, Municipal Branch, Water Permits Division, Office of Water, US EPA
  • Rachel Urban, Stormwater Team, Office of Water, US EPA
  • Robyn DeYoung, Municipal Stormwater Program, Water Permits Division, Office of Water, US EPA

Additionally, Capitol Hill legislative staff explained recent and pending legislation pertaining to stormwater:

  • Annie D’Amato, J.D., Majority Professional Staff Member, Environment and Public Works Committee
  • Ryan C. Seiger, Staff Director/Senior Counsel, Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure

Part 2 Webcast Recording

During the Part 2 webcast on Thursday, April 29, attendees heard from John Putnam, who was recently appointed as the Deputy General Counsel for the US Department of Transportation. A hot topics panel also included discussions on resilience, trash, maintenance, and equity in the stormwater sector. The panelists included:

  • Marissa Aho, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Houston
  • Todd Hill, Deputy Commissioner Office of Watershed Protection, City of Atlanta, Department of Watershed Management
  • Matthew Robinson, Environmental Protection Specialist, DC Department of Energy and Environment

For more information on Water Week 2021, visit www.waterweek.us


Federal Stormwater Policy Update – September 2020

In a YouTube video update, WEF’s Legislative Director, Steve Dye, and the National Municipal Stormwater Alliance’s Executive Director, Seth Brown, provide an overview of activities at the federal level around stormwater policy, including the Economic Stimulus Package, America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2020, and FY21 Appropriations.

Water Week 2020 – Stormwater Events

Stormwater Asks for Water Week 2020 Webcast

Water Week 2020 and the National Water Policy Fly-In were held virtually last year. To prepare for potential meetings with Members of Congress, the WEF Stormwater Institute hosted a webcast on April 20, 2020, to explain and discuss the stormwater-specific asks in the 2020 Recommendations to Improve the Stormwater Program in the U.S. document. View previous versions of the document at the bottom of this page.

Webcast Recording

Webcast Slides


Stormwater Policy Forum Webcasts – Parts 1 and 2

During Water Week 2020, WEF’s Stormwater Institute virtually hosted the fourth annual Stormwater Policy Forum. Listen to the recordings below to hear legislative and regulatory updates as well as policy trends and emerging topics. You’ll hear from federal, state and local officials on a variety of topics including agriculture/stormwater nexus dynamics, efforts focusing on stormwater funding/financing issues, nation-wide research efforts focused on stormwater runoff characteristics, and updates on legal rulings in the stormwater sector. Priorities and initiatives from the state regulatory perspective on stormwater issues were shared.

Part 1 on April 28, 2020, featured Chris Kloss with the U.S. EPA Office of Water and Charles C. Glass with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Additionally, Capitol Hill legislative staff from both sides of the aisle explained recent and pending legislation pertaining to stormwater, including Jonathan R Pawlow with the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, U.S. House of Representatives and Shannon Frede with the Office of U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD).

Webcast Recording

Part 2 on May 4, 2020, featured Mark S. Osler with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; Sonia Brubaker with the U.S. EPA Water Infrastructure and Resiliency Finance Center; Christopher D. Pomeroy with AquaLaw PLC; Steven Rowe with Newtrient LLC; and Jason R. Masoner with the U.S. Geological Survey Oklahoma-Texas Water Science Center.

Webcast Recording

Webcast Slides

 

For more information on Water Week 2020, visit www.waterweek.us

2019 Recommendations to Improve the Stormwater Program in the U.S.

2018 Recommendations to Improve the Stormwater Program in the U.S

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