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Issue of October 22, 2014
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MS4 designation 'last thing' county needs

April 23, 2014 | 11:24 AM

The Harrison County Regional Sewer District met last Wednesday and the topic again centered around the possible MS4 (Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System) distinction for the county.

Board member Darin Duncan said first and foremost, the goal for the district board and the county was to get an MS4 exemption.

"The last thing we need is the people of Harrison County being made to follow MS4," Duncan said.

The MS4 designation, which includes regulations for stormwater management/water quality, is triggered when an area reaches a certain population density level. According to the census, only a small sliver of Harrison County near Georgetown qualifies for the MS4 designation, so the county sent a letter in about 10 years ago following the 2000 Census results asking to opt out of MS4.

Duncan, who was the Harrison County engineer at the time, said the county needs to do the same thing now, following the 2010 Census.

Board member Bill Byrd asked someone to briefly explain what the MS4 designation means.

"In one word, cost," board member Tony Combs said.

Once a county is designated a MS4, it is required to develop a Storm Water Quality Management Plan, which is basically an action plan for the county or entity to institute the following six requirements or measures: public education and outreach; public involvement and participation; illicit discharge detection and elimination; construction site stormwater runoff control; post-construction stormwater management in new development and redevelopment; and pollution prevention/good housekeeping for municipal operations maintenance.

"We're not urbanized enough yet," Duncan said. "It's just a matter of if we can get an exemption again."

Duncan said one of the main goals and reasons for setting up the RSD was to prepare the county for MS4.

"We want them to say, 'These guys really don't need our oversight'," Duncan said.

In other business, the board reported that two sets of plans (the county's through the RSD and the town of Lanesville's) have been submitted to the Indiana Dept. of Environmental Management for review on the sanitary sewer system at the Lanesville Interstate 64 interchange area.

As for the New Salisbury project, it is essentially complete and ready for flow to start.

The next RSD meeting will be Wednesday, May 21, at 8:30 a.m. at the Harrison County Community Foundation building in Corydon.

Twitter: @rossschulz

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