The Cape Cod Commission, through its District Local Technical Assistance (DLTA) grant program, has awarded a total of $40,000 in grant and matching funds to the Cape Cod Stormwater Managers group. This funding is being used to assist Cape Cod communities in updating their stormwater management programs and meeting the requirements of the newly issued MS4 permit.
The MS4 permit regulates municipal stormwater systems to protect and restore water quality. It is administered by Mass DEP and the U.S. EPA Region 1 Office. Cape Cod Commission staff and an outside consultant will be working together with the towns to develop shared tools, strategies, and materials that are tailored for Cape Cod’s unique hydrologic and geographic setting and can be utilized by all of the member towns.
Applying a regional approach to stormwater compliance prevents duplicated effort and takes advantage of opportunities for cost savings where towns are required to perform similar tasks to meet the requirements of the MS4 permit.
Commission staff are currently exploring the overall costs of MS4 permit compliance and ways to finance these activities for Cape towns. The statewide stormwater coalition developed an outreach program titled “Think Blue Massachusetts” which is being adapted to inform Cape Cod’s significant seasonal population and Cape specific industries (marinas, etc) of their contributions to stormwater and how they can help manage it. As towns work to complete their Notice of Intent applications, Commission staff have interacted with state and federal agencies on behalf of the stormwater managers group to streamline the process.
The goal of working together at several governmental levels is to implement stormwater programs that make sense for Cape Cod, meeting the requirements of the MS4 permit while taking an efficient approach to minimizing stormwater impacts on water quality.