On November 2, the Chesapeake bay Foundation hosted an event, co-sponsored by MACo, to discuss innovative financing approaches to the daunting tasks of providing stormwater retrofits and remediation. Counties are facing a substantial cost of both public and private stormwater projects, necessitated jointly by the federal TMDL requirements for the Bay watershed, plus recent state legislation requiring numerous counties to establish stormwater fees and utilities.
Invited speakers from Restore Capital, a private firm specializing in this emerging field of public finance, spoke about a wide array of potential implementation alternatives for county governments facing these requirements. County professionals from at least ten counties participated in the discussion, and engaged in an exchange about the potential for fees, borrowing, offsets, and oversight that accompany these decisions. State representatives, including multiple officials from the Maryland Department of the Environment, outlined tools available through the state to support counties with these efforts.