2019 Water Quality Improvement Program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 5, 2019

CONTACT: Kevin Behm, Assistant Director/GIS Manager
kbehm@acrpc.org
Office: (802) 388-3141

Re: Water Quality Improvement Program

The Addison County Regional Planning Commission (“ACRPC”) is pleased to announce that the Agency of Natural Resources, Department of Environmental Conservation, Water Quality Division has recently awarded a contract to Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission (“TRORC”) in Woodstock, VT to administer water quality improvement programs to Regional Planning Commissions (RPCs) throughout the State of Vermont.  The grant is funded through the 604B program of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and is intended to fund local and regional entities to pursue water quality planning and improvements.

For this year, eligible projects will focus on water quality planning within three tasks:

  1. In consultation with ANR’s Basin Planners, identify and conduct data-entry of one or more existing river corridor or stormwater master plans for which prioritized projects are not yet incorporated into the Water Projects Database;
  2. Conduct outreach and obtain municipal support to support reclassification of surface waters to Class B(1) or Class A(1) for specific designated uses; or, support reclassicifation of wetlands to Class 1 under the Vermont Wetlands Rules; or, support designation of one surface water as an Outstanding Resource Water pursuant to 10 VSA 1242;
  3. Support water quality monitoring activities, including the municipal awareness of testing results, and how these results are used to support tactical basin plan development.

In Addison County, ACRPC shall use its funds to support the water quality monitoring and outreach work of the Addison County River Watch Collaborative (“ACRWC”) (Task 3).  ACRWC consists of a dedicated group of volunteers that sample and monitor the “health” of each river within Addison County.  ACRWC takes water samples from each river within the Region at specific locations and times. ACRWC sends the samples to the state laboratory under the LaRosa Partnership where the lab measures the samples for parameters such as E. coli bacteria, to determine whether the water is safe for swimmers, or phosphorus, to determine how much the water will contribute to the phosphorus load in Lake Champlain, which contributes to algal growth in the Lake. ACRWC publishes its results for municipal officials, citizens and scientists to use. ACRPC will actively provide technical assistance in mapping and presenting the data collected. It will create outreach materials, analytical reports and maps for presentation to municipal officials to help them understand what the data means for water quality within their town. ACRPC will assist the ACRWC Managing Director with actively promoting and maintaining the ACRWC website (www.acrpc.org/acrwc).

 

For further information, please call or e-mail Kevin Behm at (802) 388-3141 or kbehm@acrpc.org

Middlebury Water Quality Chat

The Addison County River Watch Collaborative (ACRWC) is a local nonprofit, which uses citizen scientists and volunteers to assess the condition of Addison County’s flowing waterways and to raise public awareness and stewardship of water quality in the region. Over the past few years, ACRWC has teamed up with several Addison County towns’ Conservation Commissions to hold public forums for openly sharing information about local rivers and streams.

Hosted by the Middlebury Conservation Commission, ACRWC will hold the “Middlebury Water Quality Chat” on Monday, April 15, 5:00-7:00pm at the Middlebury Town Offices. Light and tasty refreshments will be served.

The Middlebury Conservation Commission and ACRWC invite all those interested in water quality to participate. River Watch staff and volunteers will present stream monitoring data from 4 local rivers (New Haven River, Otter Creek, Middlebury River, and Lemon Fair) and will address participants’ questions and concerns on water-related matters  (from good swimming holes to erosion hot-spots).

To learn more about the Addison County River Watch Collaborative and the “Middlebury Water Quality Chat” please visit Addison County River Watch Collaborative’s (ACRWC) homepage.

Addison County Regional Planning Commission | 14 Seminary Street Middlebury, VT 05753 | 802.388.3141 |

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