Virginia CZM Program: 2014 Coastal Grant Project Description and Final Summary

Project Task:CAM logo

43 

Grantee:

Hampton Roads Planning District Commission

Project Title:

Hampton Roads Technical Assistance Program 

Project Description as Proposed:

HRPDC staff will assist 16 member local governments, other public entities, and private organizations on coastal and other environmental issues. The HRPDC will perform the following:

1. Regional Coordination Process

The coordination process involves all 16 member cities and counties and associated towns, 5 Soil and Water Conservation Districts, the Hampton Roads Sanitation District and several state and federal agencies. It addresses Core Elements of the VCZMP, Chesapeake Bay Program, and Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuarine Program. Specifically addresses CBPA implementation, wetlands, public access, environmental regulations, conservation planning and coastal energy issues. This component includes participation in the Coastal PDC Committee and the Coastal Policy Team and covers continued coordination with the state and other PDCs on coastal initiatives.

2. Environmental Impact Review

Review/comment on EIA/EIS and Coastal Consistency Determinations/Certifications affecting Hampton Roads, including coordination of local response.

3. Public Information & Education

Maintain VCZMP-related information on the HRPDC and askHRgreen.org websites. Presentations will be made on request. This component also covers monthly status reports and/or briefings to the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission and the Regional Environmental Committee, both of whose meetings are open and advertised to the public.

4. Training

Conduct four training programs/activities for local governments. Possible topics include environmental codes, LID, wetlands training, CBPA implementation, the Chesapeake Bay-wide TMDL, stormwater regulations, land conservation and funding opportunities, conservation planning, planning for sea level rise, GIS, and integrating sustainability into local plans.

5. Regional Technical Studies

Policy and technical analysis of environmental and coastal issues. Specific studies will be determined in cooperation with local governments. Potential topics include green infrastructure or sea level rise adaptation project prioritization analysis and scenario planning for the Chesapeake Bay TMDL. Project selections may change depending on local and regional needs and concerns. This may also include continued support for coastal-related initiatives, including working waterfronts planning and technical support for the Southeast Coast Saltwater Paddling Trail.

6. Technical Assistance

Provide updated information and help to localities in comprehensive plan and ordinance updates and on environmental issues.

This project is a continuation of activities undertaken by the HRPDC through the VCZMP over the last twenty years. The Regional Coordination Process is integral to all of the program components, linking them into a comprehensive environmental planning program. Through this process, the HRPDC staff manages local government advisory committees addressing the VCZMP, Chesapeake Bay Program, sea level rise, land use and wetlands issues and coordinates them with local and regional initiatives in water supply, stormwater and wastewater management that are supported directly by the localities.  Each of these programs was initially supported by VCZMP seed money. In addition to the programs noted above, it is not known what requests may evolve through the process during the course of the project. They reflect developing local needs and new state and federal initiatives. Through this project, the HRPDC also participates in the Coastal PDC networking process and its involvement in VCZMP and other state and federal environmental initiatives.

To the degree feasible, the HRPDC will document program measures consistent with the NOAA Performance Measurement System.  This will include numbers of individuals participating in the various educational components and discussion of local ordinances, plans, policies and acquisitions being considered

Federal Funding:

$60,000

Project Contact:

Ben McFarlane, 757.420.8300; bmcfarlane@hrpdcva.gov  

Project Status:

10/1/14 - 9/30/15; Project Completed

Final Product Received:

Hampton Roads Coastal Resources Technical Assistance Program Fiscal Year 2014 - 2015 Final Report (PDF) 

Project Summary Provided by Grantee:

This report describes the environmental technical assistance program conducted by the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission during FY 2014 – 2015 through its Coastal Resources Management Program. This program encompasses environmental impact review, participation in state and federal programs, coordination of regional environmental programs addressing environmental issues, such as the Chesapeake Bay and wetlands, public information and education, and technical assistance to Hampton Roads localities. It contains representative examples of the technical work, comment letters, outreach materials, and associated materials generated and used in assisting the region’s seventeen local governments, supporting the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program, and working with the other Planning District Commissions in the Coastal Zone. The report will be made available online at the HRPDC’s website: http://www.hrpdcva.gov.

Environmental Impact Review – Forty-five (45) environmental impact assessments/statements and coastal zone consistency determinations were reviewed.

Participation in State and Federal Programs – The HRPDC staff represents the region on several state and federal technical advisory committees. The HRPDC staff continued to participate in the Coastal PDC Committee and Coastal Policy Team.

Regional Coordination Process – The HRPDC staff facilitates regional advisory committees addressing a variety of coastal and environmental issues. The Regional Environmental Committee met eleven (11) times between October 1, 2014 and September 30, 2015.

Public Information and Education – HRPDC staff maintained information on its website and provided regular briefings to local elected officials, local governing bodies, and to professional and civic organizations.

Regional Technical Studies – HRPDC staff completed and summarized two (2) technical studies or projects. The first special project was an assessment of options for analyzing the economic impacts of sea level rise and flooding. The second project was a survey of local floodplain management programs.

Technical Assistance – Assistance is provided to local government staff, consultants, businesses, and citizen environmental organizations on environmental and planning issues on request.

Benefits Accrued from Prior CZM Grants – As a result of the coastal resiliency work the HRPDC staff has completed with CZM support, the Commission is in the process of establishing a dedicated sea level rise/coastal resiliency regional program.

Disclaimer: This project summary provides the federal dollars initially awarded to the grantee. Due to underexpenditure or reprogramming of grant funds, this figure may change. For more information on the allocation of coastal grant funds, please contact Laura McKay, Virginia Coastal Program Manager, at 804.698.4323 or email: Laura.McKay@deq.virginia.gov

A more detailed Scope of Work for this project is available. Please direct your request for a copy to Virginia.Witmer@deq.virginia.gov

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000


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