Stormwater runoff moves to forefront after recent storms - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Stormwater runoff moves to forefront after recent storms

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ROANOKE COUNTY, VA -

The heavy flooding across the area over the last few weeks not only has short-term inconveniences, but long-term storm water run-off can wash harmful chemicals into untreated water ways.

It can pollute our drinking water and affecting local wildlife.

"Storm water is an issue that can affect every single one of us," Cave Spring Supervisor, Charlotte Moore says. "Especially due to the storms, I think people now know how powerful water is when we have storm damage."

She's helping put the issue of storm water runoff to the forefront by bringing together local leaders and the community to continue  taking action.

"We need to be aware of what we put in our storm drains and what goes into storm drains," Moore says.

A number of speakers asked the public to do their part by doing things like keeping trash cans covered, picking up after your pet, or creating a rain garden.

However, with new Environmental Protection Agency regulations set to take place next year, many leaders can agree this will be a costly venture to fix all the drainage issues in the region.

The standards will be much stricter on the amount of stormwater runoff. If the regulations aren't met, it can result in big fines for each locality.

"Bottom line this is going to cost money," Williamson Road Area Wendy Jones, Executive Director says. "You can't do any initiative without having to pay for it. So, we need to be aware and be involved and we need to have some input."

Wendy Jones came to the meeting representing several businesses on Williamson Road in the county and city.

She says she wants to be able to prepare the owners for possible storm water utility fees.

"Everyone needs to know what's coming down the pipe and we all need to make it work the best for our community," Jones says.

Many counties like Roanoke County are kicking initiatives into high gear, hoping to beat the looming EPA deadlines by next summer.

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