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A Case Study: Insights from the City of Omaha's CSO Program on Negotiations with Regulatory Agencies

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The City received its first NPDES permit for their CSS in October 2002. The permit required the City to continue to develop and implement its Nine Minimum Controls Plan and to develop a Long Term Control Plan (LTCP). Since that time the City has been complying with the submittal requirements included in the permit, and working toward the development of a LTCP. In 2005, the Nebraska Department of Environment (NDEQ) notified the City of the requirement for the City to submit a “Substantively Complete” LTCP by October 2007, Final LTCP plan by October 2009, and to construct the LTCP controls by 2024. NDEQ stated that these dates would be included under an “enforcement mechanism” such as a Consent Order. It was important to both NDEQ and the City that the terms of the renewed CSO permit and the wastewater treatment plant permits associated with the CSOs are consistent with whatever enforcement mechanism was used. The current permits were due to expire on September 30, 2007. Therefore it was necessary for the City and NDEQ to negotiate a Consent Order at the same time as three NPDES permits were being negotiated, in addition to developing a Substantively Complete LTCP. This paper summarizes the City's approach to work with the regulatory agencies to ensure that the necessary activities were timely completed and acceptable to the City.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2008

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