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N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Water Quality - CG&L - Engineering Report FAQs

Water Quality

Mailing Address (US Postal):

Infrastructure Finance Section

1633 Mail Service Center

Raleigh, NC  27699-1633

 

Physical Address (FedEx, UPS):

Infrastructure Finance Section

512 N. Salisbury Street

8th Floor Archdale Building

Raleigh, NC  27604

 

Phone: (919) 707-9160

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

1.  How do I begin the ER/EID submittal process?

We recommend that before you submit your project, that you contact us for a pre-meeting where you can present your proposed project and discuss with us the project itself and the needed funding.

2.  Why do I need to provide a submittal checklist along with my ER/EID?

The submittal checklist allows us to the do the following:  (1) obtain contact information related to the project; (2) utilize information we need to track how the project fits into the Division of Water Quality's overarching goals, (3) obtain an overall picture of project financing, and (4) ensure that the submittal is a complete submittal. 

3.  What is the difference between an ER/EID I submit for a Determination of Minor Construction Activity (DMCA)/Categorical Exclusion (CE)/Approval and an ER/EID submitted for a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI)?

The difference between ER/EIDs submitted for a CE/DMCA/Approval and one submitted for a FONSI is in the level of detail needed.  The smaller projects (CE/DMCA/Approval) are below the minor construction activities requirements set forth in the regulations for minor construction activities (SRL/SEL/SRF projects) or the minimum criteria as set forth by EPA.  There need not be as much analysis for these types of projects; however, at minimum, the points in our current ER guidelines or Department of Administration (EID only) guidelines must be met.  Additionally, contact us for guidance on what needs to be included.

4.  Once you receive my project, what is your review process?

When the project arrives in our unit, the Supervisor will assign the technical portion to a review engineer, and, if a CE or FONSI is required, will assign our Environmental Assessment Coordinator to review the EID.  We will then send copies to the necessary agencies for review and will conduct our own review.  Once both our review and the agency review are complete, we will send you a comment package, to which you must respond.  This is an iterative process that will continue until we are satisfied that all issues are resolved.  We will then draft the appropriate environmental document, send it out for any needed review, and, once the review is complete, draft the approval letter.

5.  Who do I contact if I have questions?

For project specific questions related to the ER, contact your review engineer (Bill Bland, Michael Leggett, or Jessica Sutton).  For project-specific questions related to the EID, please contact Susan Kubacki, our Environmental Assessment Coordinator.  For overarching project questions, contact the FEU supervisor, Jennifer Haynie.  For financing questions related to the CWSRF program, please contact either Mark Hubbard, Project Management Branch Chief, or Don Evans in the Project Management Branch (STAG, SRL, and SEL questions).  For design questions, please contact the Design Management Unit Supervisor, Seth Robertson.

6.  How Quickly should my ER/EID move through FEU?

Our initial review should take 4 to 6 weeks to allow sufficient time for a thorough review.  Once we send you comments, a lot of the time it takes to complete project review and draft an approval letter will depend on how well you respond to our comments and how long you take to respond to our comments.  Please note as well that for STAG-funded projects, EPA must review the documents as well, which may add time.  Additionally, for projects requiring a FONSI, there is a 30-day public review period that must be accounted for.

 7.  I've heard that the guidance will be changing.  Why is this occurring?

  • Over the past couple of years, we have come to realize that our review process and guidance need improvement for the following reasons:
  • Timeliness of review:  We have recognized that our review process is not as efficient and streamlined as it should be and so are seeking to improve on that efficiency.
  • Clarity of expectations:  The April 2005 guidance is vague in several areas.  We are seeking to be more specific as to what we require and what we will accept.
  • Variety of project types:  We recognize that the April 2005 guidance document was designed to accommodate wastewater treatment plant expansion projects and that all of the other project types that we fund (e.g., collection systems, WWTP equipment replacement) do not fit very well into the way the guidance is currently written.
  • Expansion of types of projects funded under CWSRF:  Our CWSRF funding will be expanding in the the coming months, and as a result of some of the requirements, we will need to fund projects, such as green projects, that we have never funded before.  Our guidance as currently written does not speak at all to these project types.

8.  What are some of the ways in which the guidance will change?

We will be making major changes to our guidance to address the needs listed above.  Below are some of the ways we will do that.

  • Tailoring guidance to recognize different project types.  The revised guidance will have different sections to address different project types.  For example, we will have sections not only related to wastewater treatment but also to collection systems, WWTP Equipment Replacement and Rehabilitation, stormwater projects, and stream restoration projects.
  • Clarifying our expectations.  Within each section, we will provide clarity as to what we wish to see in the ER.
  • Tailoring the EID guidance to better fit our needs.  Currently, we follow the Department of Administration (DOA) EID guidelines for our environmental review.  The DOA guidelines are generic environmental guidelines to be followed by every department in the state.  We will incorporate these guidelines and tailor them to better suit our needs for environmental review, including a standard section on environmental justice.
  • Providing more background information.  We also plan to provide information on our funding programs and how the ER/EID review process fits into the entire funding process.  We will also discuss timelines and expectations as well as provide additional environmental information to help you better understand the environmental review process.

9.  When will the guidance be released?

We plan to release the new guidance via our web site by the beginning of May.

10.  Will you provide any kind of training related to the new guidance?

Currently, no formal training is planned.  However, we will be glad to sit down with you individually, or, if there is enough interest, provide training in a more formal setting.

updated 2-23-10

 

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