Why a stormwater utility now?
The United States EPA issued new stormwater regulations in 1999 that require communities the size of Yakima, Union Gap, Sunnyside, and Yakima County to control water pollution by stormwater runoff. These Phase II communities are required to implement municipal stormwater programs that will reduce stormwater pollution discharges. Washington State Department of Ecology, that administers the NPDES program in Washington, issued the Eastern Washington Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit on February 16, 2007. The permit requires communities that meet certain criteria to perform 6 control measures, comply with any TMDL processes and monitor the effectiveness of their program. This is known as the “6+2” requirement.

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1. What is the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Stormwater Program?
2. What is a Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4)?
3. Which Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems are regulated by the Eastern Washington Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit?
4. How are the regional stormwater utility service areas determined?
5. What is stormwater and why is it a problem?
6. What is an impervious surface?
7. How will the stormwater management program benefit taxpayers, homeowners, etc.?
8. What kinds of pollutants are found in the storm drain system?
9. Are sewers and storm drains the same thing?
10. What can residents do to help improve stormwater quality?
11. What can you put down the storm drain?
12. What happens if the Regional Stormwater group does not comply with its NPDES stormwater discharge permit?
13. What is meant by a "larger common plan of development or sale?"
14. What kinds of stormwater discharges are required to have NPDES stormwater permit coverage?
15. What is the stormwater fee used for?
16. How is the stormwater fee calculated?
17. Is the utility fee just another tax?
18. Why a stormwater utility now?
19. No water runs off my property. Why am I being charged a stormwater fee?