Griffin, Georgia's Stormwater Utility "A Non-structural Best Management Practice" (BMP)
Keller, Brant D.
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The U.S. Congress passed the Clean Water Act in 1972 with a stated objective to restore and maintain the chemical; physical and biological integrity of the nation's waters through point source and non-point source controls. The method to achieve this restoration process is through the implementation of "Best Management Practices" (BMP's). An effective tool to achieve compliance with the Proposed Stormwater National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase I and Phase II Regulations is implementation of a Stormwater Utility. The NPDES program was created. to ensure that permitted discharges meet applicable water quality requirements. The Phase I and Phase II permitting process involves primarily urban communities of a specific size and population. Phase I of the process required cities (100,000 population or greater) to secure a NPDES permit. The Phase II process will require smaller municipalities and other urbanized areas to secure a NPDES permit. The City of Griffin will undergo the Phase II permitting process based on its size and population. We took a proactive approach to watershed management by addressing both stormwater quantity and quality issues. The City of Griffin felt that creation of a Stormwater Utility (the Utility) was one of the most important steps to take in order to ensure that the overall Stormwater Management Program could be successfully implemented. The Utility is an example of a non-structural Best Management Practice (BMP) that has been implemented for the sole purpose of generating revenues for stormwater related improvements. This paper summarizes the important aspects associated with Griffin's successful effort to create and implement the first Stormwater Utility in Georgia.