Option to an expensive, unnecessary Rain Tax

Option to an expensive, unnecessary Rain Tax

Dear Board of Supervisors:

I had the opportunity to discuss the current Albemarle County Stormwater Management Policy/Proposal with Ms. Mallek today and followed up with the following information. I would be happy to discuss with each of you at your convenience. I can be reached at 443-739-1358. I have simply cut and pasted the correspondence below.

I would encourage you to take a look at www.nutrientstewardship.org This is an overview of the 4R Nurtient Stewardship Program that will shed some light on the program. The Nature Conservancy and Certified Crop Advisors implement this highly effective program. The program now has state legislative bills with support from commodity groups and farmers in NY, OH, and MO. Other states have either adopted or in the process of implementing the program on a voluntary basis in MI, MN, FL, TX, KS, IN, IL, IA and it has been adopted by The Great Lakes Commission and Ontario, Canada. I would be honored to have the board consider this program in Albemarle County as an alternative to spending $22 Million. The program can be funded in Albemarle County for less than $1.5 Million over 10 years ($150,000/year).

Three different approaches that we talked about on the phone that are much more cost effective and reduce N, P and sediment loadings orders of magnitude greater than traditional stormwater management approaches:

  1. Take a look at the 4R Certification Program that has been in place for the Western Lake Erie basin. The website and program statistics can be found at https://4rcertified.org/program-stats/ The program was initiated as a voluntary effort and then adopted by the Ohio State Legislature after the success of the program was demonstrated.
  2. I have included three attachments for a collaborative watershed project covering over a million acres in the Milford Lake, KS Watershed. The approach utilizes a host of private funds (drinking water utilities, farm bureau, other ag commodity groups, private ag business, The Nature Conservancy, etc. and 50% match grant funding).
  3. POTW owned and operated Dixie Drain Agriculture treatment unit in Idaho – http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20161031/dixie-drain-phosphorus-removal-draws-interest and excellent video by the CIty of Boisie. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=69BJUkEKjE4

I have much more information and input to help make a greater impact on water quality than the traditional approaches being considered by the board.


Ed Thomas
Director, Regulatory Affairs
The Fertilizer Institute
425 Third Street, SW Suite 950
Washington, DC 20024