On December 11, 2020, HRPDC staff had the opportunity to speak with approximately 30 real estate professionals in a Training Blitz hosted by Mr. Tim Vohar, a Managing Broker at Berkshire Hathaway Towne Realty. Dr. KC Filippino and Ms. Jill Sunderland of the HRPDC presented a brief overview of the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act (CBPA) and how the real estate community can help pave the way for smoother communications between local government staff and new waterfront homeowners who may not be aware of the CBPA requirements for home improvement projects. While each locality implements their CBPA program a little differently, the guiding principals are consistent in all of the programs. There is a connection to land use planning and the water quality of the Chesapeake Bay and because of that, certain regulations must be adhered to when developing on or near the water in Virginia.
Staff shared two new resources, including the askHRgreen.org’s CBPA page and the interactive mapping application that makes it easy to determine whether a residential property is within the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area. By using the mapping application to help a homeowner determine whether a home they’re interested in purchasing would be impacted by the CBPA, real estate professionals can provide another service for their clients. They can also encourage homeowners to reach out to local government staff to be more aware of the CBPA permitting requirements for future improvements like adding a swimming pool, shed, or other structure.
This was the first in what is hoped to be a series of trainings by HRPDC staff on water resources issues that real estate professionals may find valuable. Other topics of interest could include askHRgreen.org’s Get Flood Fluent campaign and upcoming changes to the CBPA regulations that will include climate change and sea level rise resilience.