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 Volume 19, Issue 5                                                                                                      May 2017

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In This Issue
2017 Annual Conference
Get Involved with FSA
New Secretary at FDEP
Conference Opening Session
Final Session Summary
Toxic Algae Study Finds
EPA Initiatives
FSAEF Scholarships
FSA Career Center
Stormwater Operator Training
Join Our Mailing List
Online Registration Closes June 2nd! 

FSA 2017 Annual Conference

June 14-16, 2017
Sanibel Harbour Marriott, Ft. Myers
Missed the Webinar?
FSA Fogarty
 Training Center  

FSA Member Search Directory
Search the ENTIRE database!
Applications and all supporting materials are due August 4, 2017.
2017 Annual Conference - Register Now!
Registration Closes June 2nd!
Based on registrations received, FSA's 2017 Annual Conference will be a full house!  In fact, FSA's room block at the conference hotel is sold out - but we've arranged for convenient alternatives.  It's the best-of-the-best in stormwater training, education and networking in Florida and the only conference that " connects the dots" between legislative/regulatory policy and implementation strategies.  There's a great Opening Session and Keynote Speakers, outstanding workshop topics, the best opportunities for networking and a completely sold out Exhibit Hall!  Like last year, there's a third "track" of sessions, offering not only more workshops but also giving you greater flexibility to pick sessions that you REALLY want to attend.  Register Now for the Annual Conference this June 14-16 at the Sanibel Harbour Marriott! 
Want to Get Active with FSA?
Want to get more involved with your Association?  Help to set the direction for its training and education programs?  Grow membership and improve networking opportunities?  Guide legislative policy?  You have two opportunities - and they're coming up quick!  

- The membership will select new Officers and members of the Board of Directors during the Annual Meeting set for the morning of Friday, June 16th during the Annual Conference.  If you're willing to devote a little time to FSA, be sure to attend the Annual Meeting and seek election for one of the vacant seats in the FSA leadership.

- Not ready to serve on the Board?  All committee members will be appointed by FSA's President in June.  Watch for an email asking for volunteers to serve, complete the application form and return it to FSA.  
New Secretary Named at FDEP
The Cabinet approved the Governor Scott's nomination of Noah Valenstein as the next Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection earlier this month.  Mr. Valenstein previously served for three years in the Governor's office, where he coordinated environmental, agriculture and energy issues.  For the past 18 months he has served as Executive Director of the Suwanee River Water Management District.  He holds a degree in environmental policy from the UF and a law degree from FSU.  He will begin serving at FDEP in early June.
"Looking Ahead at Water Policy"
Conference Opening Session
An outstanding panel will discuss future water policy in Florida during the Opening Session of the 24th Annual Conference.  The Keynote Address will be given by Clay Henderson, Executive Director of the Institute for Water and Environmental Resilience at Stetson University.  A lawyer by education, Mr. Henderson served for two terms on the Volusia County Council and was a member of the Florida Constitutional Revision Commission in 1997-98.  He has been directly involved with most of the natural resource protection provisions in the Florida Constitution, and led the development of many nationally-recognized land conservation programs, including Preservation 2000 and Florida Forever.  The Keynote Address will be followed by a panel discussion including Representative Matt Caldwell, Chair of the House Government Accountability Committee; Ryan Matthews, FDEP Interim Secretary; and, FSA President Tiffany Busby
Final Session Summary Posted
The end of the 2017 Regular Session was extended by three days and closed on Monday, May 8th.  At the time of the release of this edition of the fastTRACKS, it is unclear as to whether a Special Session on budget or gaming will be called before July 1st - the beginning of the State's fiscal year.  The final Priority Issues summary for the 2017 Regular Session has been posted to the Legislative (members only) Page of the FSA website.  Members looking for more information may access a recording of FSA's May 11th webinar Overview of the 2017 Legislative Session
Study Links Toxic Algae Blooms with Fatal Liver Disease
A recent study conducted by Ohio State University for the Centers for Disease Control found a correlation between people living in areas with significant blue-green algae blooms and a greater likelihood of death from non-alcoholic liver disease.  While a definitive causal relationship was not established, the study did find a statistically significant association between cyanobacterial blooms and non-alcoholic liver disease in the contiguous United States.  Additional studies are recommended to establish a specific association between cyanobacterial blooms and liver disease. 
EPA Initiatives
Three initiatives currently underway concerning EPA and water quality policy/programs deserve the attention of FSA members.  To the extent that a robust, nationwide interpretation of the Clean Water Act is necessary for successful partnerships to implement the program, local governments should monitor emerging developments as they may affect your ability to effectively manage water quality improvement plans and objectives.

Regulatory Streamlining - The comment period for input on existing regulations that "could be repealed, replaced or modified to make them less burdensome" closed May 15, 2017.  See docket EPA-HQ-OA-2017-0190 and visit the EPA Office of Water's webpage for more information.

EPA Budget Cuts - The Administration's proposed budget reduces spending at EPA by 31% to $5.7 billion from $8.1 billion, including eliminating the $165 million Nonpoint Source Grant program and about 25% of the agency's 15,000 positions.  The most recent EPA budget was already 20% less than its 2010 funding level of $10 billion.

WOTUS - While FSA objected to many provisions contained in the final Waters of the United States rule (litigation remains active in federal courts) EPA has recently noticed its intention to completely repeal the rule.  A separate rule-making initiative is contemplated for 2018 to offer new definitions for WOTUS. 
FSAEF Scholarships - Applications due 8/4!
The FSA Educational Foundation's 2017 Scholarship Program awards financial assistance to qualified students attending Florida colleges and universities whose educational interest is in stormwater research, management or finance.  Applications are accepted annually from graduate students in colleges or schools of engineering, natural science, public administration (or closely related fields) that have an interest in stormwater quality, management or finance.  Qualified applicants should submit an Application Form along with all supporting materials no later than August 4, 2017. 
FSA Career Center
Did you know that FSA members can post position vacancies on the FSA Career Center at no cost (i.e. FREE!) for 30 days?  Visit the Career Center to post a job announcement or to search for open positions.    
Stormwater Operator Training
FSA's Fogarty Training Center offers numerous classes throughout the year for stormwater field staff and their supervisors each year.  Successful completion of either the Level 1 or Level 2 Certified Stormwater Operator class (or recertification) is recognized by FDEP as fulfilling your MS4 permit's requirements for training and refresher training of stormwater staff in:
  • Erosion and Sedimentation Control
  • Good Housekeeping Practices  
  • High Risk Facilities
  • Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
  • Spill Prevention and Remediation
FSA Certifications are valid for five years.  The most convenient way to renew your certification is to attend a two-hour class online.  The last online recertification classes for 2017 are set for November 7th.      

We appreciate your feedback!  Please don't hesitate to contact us if have any questions about FSA. 


Florida Stormwater Association
Website: www.florida-stormwater.org

Toll-Free Phone: 888-221-3124