Volume 20, Issue 4                                                              April 2018
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In This Issue
Looking Back During FSA's 25th Anniversary
Brett Cunningham, Jones Edmunds & Associates

With 25 years of very successful history behind us, it is a challenge to point to FSA's single-most important accomplishment. For me, though, it is how the organization has become the most influential and respected voice in Florida for representing stormwater issues important to local governments. For the better part of two decades, I have witnessed how our Association has advocated for approaches that are protective of our water resources while accommodating the realities of running a local government. How we arrived in this position was the result of many good decisions and a membership and staff that have the passion, knowledge, and diplomacy to make it happen.

As John Buss alluded in the January edition of the FSA fastTRACKS, the hiring of Kurt Spitzer and then Danielle Hopkins were two of the early good decisions. The respect for Kurt in Tallahassee and his understanding of the inner workings of local governments was the perfect pairing with a great group of early leaders within our organization in forming a very solid foundation and set the tone for our future. The new leaders that emerged in the subsequent years benefited greatly from that foundation. Danielle has long been an unsung hero of the Association. Her management skills and command of the thousand details it takes to run the organization smoothly and has been largely responsible for freeing up the rest of us to focus on what is important to us: learning from each other and helping to influence balanced, reasonable approaches to stormwater management.

On a personal note my greatest reward from having been a member for nearly 20 years is the people I have met in the organization. I'm not sure what it is about this organization - and perhaps even our profession - but it attracts such genuinely good people. I look forward to our Annual and Winter Conferences in part because of the content but more so to associate with so many great professionals. If you have never been to an FSA Conference, I encourage you to attend....you'll see what I mean!

Brett Cunningham was President of the Association in 2012-13.
FDEP Secretary to Speak at Opening Session
"New Directions in Water Quality"

An outstanding panel will discuss future water policy in Florida during the Opening Session of the 25th Anniversary Conference. The Keynote Address will be given by Noah Valenstein, Secretary of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. Secretary Valenstein was appointed Secretary of the Department by Governor Rick Scott in May of last year, returning to DEP with nearly 15 years of public service experience in governmental agencies and a passion for natural resource protection. Prior to serving at FDEP, he was Executive Director of the Suwannee River Water Management District. The Keynote Address will be followed by a panel discussion including Jeaneanne Gettle, the new Director of the Water Protection Division of EPA Region 4 in Atlanta and FSA President Tiffany Busby. Audience participation will be encouraged! The Conference is almost sold out. Register Today!
Board Elections Coming in June
FSA is looking for dynamic leaders dedicated to ensuring the continued success of the Association. There will be elections to fill vacancies on the Boards of Directors for the  Florida Stormwater Association and the FSA Educational Foundation during the Friday business meeting at the Annual Conference. This is your chance to help lead the primary organization dedicated to furthering the stormwater management profession and water quality improvement programs in Florida. What's in it for you?
  • An opportunity to enhance the value and set the direction of FSA and FSAEF
  • A significant role in advancing your profession and water quality programs
  • Access to up-to-date information about the challenges facing your profession
  • The chance to exchange ideas and perspectives with other volunteer leaders
We want to hear from you! If you're interested in serving or if you know of a member that you would like to recommend to serve, complete a Leadership Recommendation Form today!
Bylaws Amendments Pending
 Amendments to both the FSA and FSA Educational Foundation's Bylaws will be considered during the Annual Meeting of the membership at the June Annual Conference. The amendments concern the Boards of Directors for both organizations.

In addition to the Officers and Past Presidents, the membership of the Board of Directors is composed of representatives from three different types of FSA members: Local governments, like cities and counties; Consultants, like engineers and other registered professionals; and, WMDs.

The proposed amendment provides that representatives of special district members (e.g. Water Control Districts) in addition to representatives of cities and counties, would be eligible to vote and run for one of the two "Local Government" seats in each of the five WMD areas.

The FSA Educational Foundation has a five-person Board of Directors. The Chair of the FSA Education Committee is an automatic member and the four other members are elected by the membership every two years for terms of two years. The Chair of the FSAEF Board is elected by the other Board members and must be a Past President of FSA.

The proposed amendment provides that the elected members of the Board are chosen for staggered terms of two-years each. The requirement that the Chair must be a Past President of FSA is repealed and replaced with a requirement that at least one of the four elected members of the FSAEF Board must have served as a Past President or in another leadership position in FSA.

Remember that membership in FSA and FSAEF is based on organizations; all members of FSA are also members of FSAEF.
Private Sector Dues Changing November 2018 
FSA's membership unanimously approved an amendment to the Association's Bylaws in June 2017 that changed the dues structure for private sector members. The amendment leaves the current minimum and maximum dues rates alone but revised the method by which the size of the company is determined. The membership adopted the changes to make FSA's dues structure more equitable and to simplify the method for determining dues. For most private sector members, the change in rates is minor. However, the effective date of the amendment was delayed until the beginning of FSA's 2018-19 fiscal year (starting November 1st) to allow for plenty of time to budget for any changes. Want More Information? Visit the FSA rates page or call 888-221-3124.
Corps Navigable Waters Info Request Withdrawn 
After HB 7043 passed during Florida's recent Legislative Session to specifically authorize FDEP to assume the federal dredge and fill permitting program, the Jacksonville Office of the Army Corps of Engineers initiated a process to seek public input regarding the use of waters within Florida for navigation.  The request for input was withdrawn shortly after concerns were raised by business and regulated interests. Discussions on transferring responsibility for wetlands permitting from the EPA/ACOE to FDEP continue.
CRC Finishes its Work
Florida's Constitution provides that Constitutional Revision Commissions (CRCs) are appointed every 20 years.  The 2017-18 CRC has now concluded its work and passed eight proposals for the consideration of the voters in November.  Final adoption requires approval by a vote of at least 60% of the voters.  Note that Proposal 95, which was closely monitored by FSA, was not included in the CRC's recommendations.  Visit the Legislative (members only) Page of FSA's website for more information.
WOTUS Update
EPA has finalized its proposal to delay the effective date of the 2015 Waters of the United States or "WOTUS" rule by two years.  Earlier in February, FSA's case in (federal) District Court in Tallahassee was stayed for one year, leaving the challenge dormant but still alive in the event that EPA's rule delaying the effective date is rejected in court.  While the new rule has yet to be released, it seems clear that EPA intends to narrow the application of the scope of the CWA.  Along that line, the Administrator has recently issued a memorandum removing the authority that regional offices previously enjoyed to decide when particular waterbodies are jurisdictional and to "veto" ACOE-issued permits that were considered too lenient to protect the environment.  Stay tuned!
SWU Fee Decision Appealed
A decision of a Palm Beach County Circuit Court is being appealed to Florida's Fourth District Court of Appeal.  The circuit court ruled that the Palm Beach County School District does not owe the City of West Palm Beach the stormwater utility fees that the City has been billing (and the School District not paying) for the past six years.  The School District did not deny that it received benefit from the City's stormwater system but that state law exempts it from responsibility for payment.  The City is appealing the Circuit Court's decision to the 4th DCA; FSA, the League of Cities and others will file a "Friend of the Court" brief in support of the City's appeal.
SWU Webinar - May 17th
FSA's second webinar of the year will focus on emerging developments and trends in stormwater utilities, including rate studies and structures, apportioning costs throughout a service area and factoring expenses for water quality improvement. All cities and counties - those with long-established stormwater utilities and those considering their adoption for the first time - will have an opportunity to learn during this webinar!  Registration for the webinar is free for FSA members thanks to the sponsorship of Applied Sciences.  Space is limited; please try to share a screen with your co-workers using only one registration link.  Register today .
2018 SWU Survey
FSA has conducted a statewide Stormwater Utility Survey every two years since 1995.  The Survey examines practices and trends regarding rates, billing and collection methods, revenues collected and their use, staffing patterns, etc.  Data for the 2018 Survey is being compiled now and the Final Report will be published and distributed in June.  Each member organization will receive a free copy of the Final Report!  Past Surveys may be found on the FSA website.
FSAEF Scholarship Award
The FSA Educational Foundation's Scholarship Program awards financial assistance to qualified graduate students attending Florida colleges and universities. Applications are accepted annually from graduate-level 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 supporting materials by August 3, 2018.

FSAEF is a separate 501(C)(3) charitable foundation. Donations to the Scholarship Program can be made by local governments, corporations and individuals. Donations are tax deductible for individuals and are a business expense for corporations. Support your profession and its future leaders by contributing to the FSAEF Scholarship Program!
FSA's Fogarty Training Center
FSA's Fogarty Training Center holds over 25 classes throughout Florida each year. A current list of classes may be found on the Training Center's webpage. Both Level 1 and Level 2 Certified Stormwater Operator classes meet the requirements of your MS4 permit for initial or "refresher" training of stormwater staff in:
  • Erosion and Sedimentation Control
  • Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
  • Spill Prevention and Remediation
  • Good Housekeeping Practices
  • High Risk Facilities
We appreciate your feedback!  Please don't hesitate to contact us if have any questions about FSA. 
Florida Stormwater Associati on
Website: www.florida-stormwater.org
Toll-Free Phone: 888-221-3124