Public Involvement/Participation

A regulatory agency or municipal office working alone can only be effective in reducing stormwater pollution if it has the participation, partnership, and combined efforts of other groups in the community all working towards the same goal. The point of public involvement is to build on community capital­—the wealth of interested citizens and groups—to help spread the message on preventing stormwater pollution, to undertake group activities that highlight storm drain pollution, and contribute volunteer community actions to restore and protect local water resources.

Phase II MS4s are required to follow all state and local public notice requirements when implementing their stormwater program. However, to be effective, opportunities for public involvement should be built into the fundamental process of community stormwater management. For example, an MS4 can offer opportunities to the public to participate in stormwater program development and implementation, through positions on a local stormwater management panel.

Public involvement also includes facilitating opportunities for direct action, educational, and volunteer programs such as riparian planting days, volunteer monitoring programs, stormdrain marking, or stream-clean up programs. Groups such as watershed groups and conservation corps teams who want to participate in promoting environmental causes should be encouraged and offered opportunities to participate in the stormwater management program.