Towns asked to meet federal stormwater standards

WILTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has revised its draft Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System permit, affecting over 60 New Hampshire communities — including Wilton.

The draft permit, referred to as MS4, has been updated to replace a permit finalized in 2003, based on comment from local communities.

The permit would require Wilton, among other towns, to enforce a storm water management plan designed to control pollutants, according to a press release from the EPA issued on Feb. 12. Wilton does not have a stormwater management plan currently, according to Sewer and Water Commission Chair Jim Tuttle.

The draft permit outlines control measures the town is expected to take to reduce pollutants, including public education, detecting and eliminating illicit discharge and managing potentially harmful runoff.

The new draft of the permit would implement several changes: It extends deadlines for towns to complete some of the requirements, reduces the required frequency of street and sidewalk sweeping, and allows the use of field test kits to reduce the cost of monitoring pollutants.

The EPA will hold a public hearing on the new draft March 14 at the N.H. Department of Environmental Services Pease Field Office in Portsmouth at 2 p.m. Wilton’s Sewer and Water Commissions will meet at the Town Hall on Feb. 28 at 6:30 p.m.

Ashley Saari can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or asaari@ledgertranscript.com. She’s on Twitter at @AshleySaari.

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